Shonen Knife tonight. A Japanese Pop-Punk band, around since 1981, who were hugely influenced by 60s girl groups and The Ramones and they had a pretty solid following in their native Japan as a fringe element of the J-Pop movement. But it was when they were discovered by the likes of Nirvana, Sonic Youth and Redd Kross, that they suddenly achieved worldwide attention. Kurt Cobain was credited as being one of their first die-hard fans, being turned on to Burning Farm, a cassette only release which made its way into the import shops in the Sea-Tac area in 1986. Prior to that, their albums were available in very small quantities via the Import market. SubPop would eventually secure right to issuing their material in the U.S., while at the same time, word of mouth was spreading and many Alternative bands were citing Shonen Knife as big influences on them. Sonic Youth invited them to join them on their Japanese tour in 1987. And it was in 1991 that the band came to the U.S. to play several dates on the West Coast.
This session, their second for John Peel, comes around the time they were making inroads to British audiences. Having embarked on a UK tour, opening for Nirvana late in 1991, the band were continuing to gather fans and create good word-of-mouth. John Peel was also a fan, and was playing their records for a while. So it was only natural they took part in the tradition of a Peel session. Their first was recorded around the time of their headlining show at Camden Underworld in London in December of 1991 – their first Peel session was in January of 1992.
Still together, but with a few personnel changes – they released their 20th album in 2016.
In case you missed this Peel session from 1992 – here it is, in all it’s high-energy glory.