A Japanese all-girl power pop/rock band. I'd describe their music as a cross between The Ramones
and The Go-Gos
. Their music is usually happy and upbeat, and their lyrics range from a variety of cute
topics, but they also tend to have a lot of songs about food
. Regardless of their sometimes silly lyrics, Shonen Knife's music always puts me in a happy mood.
Shonen Knife has been around in Japan since the early Eighties (1981, I think). They were relatively unknown in the US until the early Ninties. Kurt Cobain
, lead singer of Nirvana, really dug Shonen Knife's music, and took them on Nirvana's tour. Not only did this launch their career to a new high, but Nirvana was an influence in later Shonen Knife tracks; you can hear some heavy Nirvana-esque guitar riffs in songs like Twist Barbie
, and Banana Chips
(which is my personal favorite SK song).
Until recently, Shonen Knife consisted of three members: Naoko Yamano (guitar), Atsuko Yamano (drums), and Michie Nakatani (bass). Michie left the band, leaving just the Yamano sisters. However, their last album, Strawberry Sound
, was recorded before Michie left.
Discography of US Releases:
Shonen Knife (1990)--this is their fist release in America. It's a compilation of their earlier songs from the Eighties.
(1993)--this is re-recordings of their earlier songs.
The Birds & the B-Sides (1996)--this is all cover tunes. Included is an awesome cover of the Carpenter's
hit Top of the World
( FYI, Shonen Knife's version of the song was used in Microsoft's
TV commercials for Windows 95
Brand New Knife (1997)
(1998)--my favorite SK album.
(2000)--so far, only released in Japan
; hopefully in the US