During the early-’90s alternative wave, quirky Japanese indie rock trio Shonen Knife made major fans out of alt-rock’s elite (Sonic Youth, Nirvana, and Redd Kross, among others) and built a solid worldwide cult following with their Ramones-meets-Beatles brand of sticky-sweet punk-pop. Following their early-’80s rise as indie upstarts, they signed to the majors for the release of 1992’s breakthrough Let’s Knife. With vocalist Naoko Yamano at the core, four albums were issued with the founding trio, before the first of many lineup shuffles.
The band’s early-2000s output included 2003’s Candy Rock and 2005’s Genki Shock! Cementing their veteran status in the 2010s, Yamano kept the band going, their endearing charm and no-nonsense punk bursts packing efforts such as 2011’s Osaka Ramones and 20th album, 2016’s Adventure.
In 2018, the band celebrated their comeback success with ALIVE! in Osaka, a live collection culled from their lengthy list of punk confections.