Before Babymetal there was Shonen Knife (translation: boy knife). Founded 33 years ago (sidebar: the same year as Metallica was formed) their high energy, happy rock/pop-punk sound and songs about unlikely subjects such as cats, food (ramen, choco bars, sushi, and many more), sunshine, bubbles, etc have given them a cult following amongst music fans. Shonen Knife have toured with Nirvana (Kurt Cobain was a massive fan), played with Sonic Youth and feted by John Peel. The present incarnation consisting of one of the original founders Naoko Yamano (vocals/guitar) along with Ritsuko Taneda (bass/vocals) and Emi Morimoto (drums) keep the energy going after all these years.
After last playing in Belfast 2 years ago they returned to an enthusiastic crowd at the Black Box during the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival. Their set did not lose momentum with Naoko and Ritsuko carrying out synchronised moves and classic rock star posing during older classics as well those from their new album, Overdrive. The enthusiasm and energy that exudes from Shonen Knife makes it very hard not to enjoy one’s self and indeed I cannot recommend it highly enough.
Their new album, Overdrive is out now.
1st – 11th May 2014 – Cathedral Quarter, Belfast