Shonen Knife (meaning “Boy Knife” in Japanese) is an all-female Japanese pop punk band formed in Osaka, in 1981. Heavily influenced by 1960s girl groups, pop bands, The Beach Boys, and early punk rock bands, such as the Ramones, the trio crafts stripped-down songs with simplistic lyrics sung both in Japanese and English.
They continue to be the most internationally recognized name in Japanese Rock, the indie darlings of hipsters and rock stars alike, thirty-three years since Naoko and the band began releasing albums of their joyous mixture of pop, punk, food and fantasy for the world to enjoy. Since their inception featuring Naoko’s sister Atsuko and their friend, bassist/vocalist Michie, through to their current lineup featuring members Ritsuko (bass) and Emi (drums), SK have maintained their rightful place in the ever changing indie rock scene.
Despite their pop-oriented nature, the trio maintains a distinctly underground garage rock sound rooted in edgy instrumentation and D.I.Y. aesthetics, which over the course of their long career has earned them a solid, worldwide cult following and made avid fans out of seminal ’90s alternative rock bands such as Sonic Youth, Nirvana, and Redd Kross. The band has been credited with making “the international pop underground more international” by “opening it up to bands from Japan”. They have also performed as a Ramones tribute band under the name The Osaka Ramones and have recorded music for numerous films including the theme song to the popular “PowerPuff Girls” cartoon series. Shonen Knife has toured worldwide playing their unique brand of sugar-pop-rock touring in the US, Canada, UK, Europe, Japan, China, Australia, Thailand and thickening their rich syrup as a band with each and every release.