Like a Shonen Knife through Butter


Words: Ralph Mexico

I was minding my business, lifting some lead off the St. Lukes Church, when I was engaged in conversation by a priest in a tutu. “What have the Japanese ever done for us?” he rather strangely asked, as I hid my booty (not a euphemism) behind my back.

“Well, apart from the bullet train, instant noodles and general anaesthesia the Japanese have also given us Shonen Knife, without doubt the finest all-girl group since The Shirelles.”

The bizzarely-clad cleric wouldn’t take me at my word. He professed ignorance of the mighty Knife and demanded I sing a few Shonen classics.

The lead was getting heavy in my hands (again, not a euphemism) as I sang ‘Catnip Dream’ and ‘Riding On The Rocket’. The priest started rocking out and shaking his rosary beads in time to the songs.

A crowd had gathered at this stage, further lessening my chance of an escape. The masses demanded more Shonen Knife songs.

I gave them ‘Twist Barbie’, cunningly followed by a sing-a-long version of the Carpenters’ anthem “Top Of The World” (as covered in the early 90s by the Knife).

Everyone started singing along and swaying. I got a bit carried away and started juggling the lead as I kept repeating the chorus. No-one cared. They were all singing away to their hearts’ content.

As they launched into the umpteenth “Looking down on creation” line I scarpered with the lead and the priest just looked at me, waved, and continued singing. The whole crowd of them could still be above at St. Luke’s Cross for all I know or they may eventually have taken the singing into Henchy’s Bar.

That’s the power of Shonen Knife.

This utterly fabulous group are coming to Crane Lane on Thursday, May 8th. The gig is at 8.30pm. Tickets are €12.00. Ike! Ike! Ike! Ike! (Go! Go! Go! Go! in Japanese). This could very well be the gig of the year.

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About Noise

Cork music since 2010
Millroom 2,
3rd Floor,
Thompson House,
MacCurtain Street,
Cork City,
Conor O'Toole
Graham Lynch