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Her husky soprano and incisive third-wave folk first became the soundtrack to fans’ lives 20 years ago, from their postcollege idealism through to today, as they approach 40 and beyond. Nowadays, there’s chrome on the hood, daily seething at the corporate job and a fair amount of stumbling through the postfeminist landscape. To those loyal soldiers, Dar Williams has a simple message on “Write This Number Down,” from her latest set, In the Time of Gods: “Carry justice in your heart/And we’ll be there to get your backs.” Cascading angelic voices and shimmering acoustic pop betray the song’s central theme—that we’re on a treadmill, fighting the same inequities.
Though its members were bred elsewhere, feminist electropunk trio Le Tigre is firmly rooted in New York City: Frontwoman Kathleen Hanna resides downtown, guitarist Johanna Fateman lives in Harlem, and keyboardist JD Samson represents Brooklyn. The band even featured an ode to the city's subway system, "My My Metrocard," on its 1999 self-titled debut album. The group has been on hiatus since 2006, but fans clamoring for a fix can relive Hanna & Co.'s frenetic live performances with the upcoming release of Who Took the Bomp? Le Tigre on Tour, directed by Kerthy Fix (Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and the Magnetic Fields).
In the lump-in-throat-inducing "Fleet of Hope," from Indigo Girls' latest and 11th studio release, Poseidon and the Bitter Bug, Emily Saliers likens herself to a fisherman at daybreak: "We will have caught on to something by the end of the day / But mostly we'll think about the one that got away."