The Most “Kawaii” Punk Rockers in the Whole, Wide World

Shonen Knife played a set at the Paradiso in Amsterdam last night and rocked everybody’s socks off. It’s amazing to think that 2011 marks the 30th anniversary of this punk trio from Osaka, Japan. Lead singer Naoko Yamano, the only original member, will celebrate her 51st birthday this year but she can still shred like a maniac. Bassist Ritsuko Taneda joined up in 2006 and her enthusiasm is unmatched. I’ve never seen a musician so incredibly happy to be on stage. In between banging her head wildly, she bounced around like a cartoon character.

I bought a CD from their merch table after the show. They each took the time to sign it and drew little cat doodles next to their names. Too cool/cute.

Here’s a clip from their encore, which included four Ramones covers. Featured here: “Sheena is a Punk Rocker” and “The KKK Took My Baby Away.”

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