Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Shonen Knife at the Rock n' Roll Hotel, Washington, DC 2010

Okay look, I know it was a Sunday night and it was raining, but if you didn't make it out to Shonen Knife's September 26th show at the Rock n' Roll Hotel in Washington DC, you really missed out on something special. Shonen Knife demonstrated once again that they love doing what they do best, and they never do it half-way.

The ladies from Osaka got up on stage around 11pm and got to work right away
with their set, blazing through classics like "Twist Barbie" and "Banana Chips" that sounded as fresh now as they did when they were first recorded. Songs from their two most recent albums, "Supergroup" and "Free Time" , like the already classic "BBQ Party" and the ode to the giant cuddly rodent called a "Capybara" were just as endearing and fun to hear, The crowd was oddly a bit shy at the beginning of the show, but it wasn't long at all before everyone started getting into the spirit of this epic rock n' roll moment, and before long the entire room was screaming and cheering as they danced to the Knife's infectious tunes with abandon.

Shonen Knife founder Naoko was in great form, and clearly was enjoying herself as she played to the crowd and led the band through early material and new anthems as well. She displayed her well-known rapport with the crowd that made the show feel like a gathering of friends more so than just a superstar rock concert. Her good spirits were magnified by bass player Ritsuko, who lit up the room with an enthusiastic energy and pure joy that made everyone forget the rainy night outside. I just adore Ritsuko for what she brings to the band, and it's always great to see her.

And then there's new Shonen Knife member Emi on drums, and I have to say she is absolutely amazing. Emi-chan went from being a new face into a cherished member of the band in virtually no time at all. Her boundless positive energy and sparkling personality is irresistible within seconds, and simply can't fail to win you over. See them live and you'll know exactly what I mean!

The show went by quickly, but it never felt rushed or forced. The pacing of the songs was perfect, and the three of them played tightly without feeling overly slick, It was quite simply a perfect night of rock n' roll. As the lights went up, the smiles on the faces of the audience beamed around the room. We walked over to the merch table, which is run by their fantastic tour manager and fellow artist, DJ Sashimi, who's every bit as kind and likable as the band members, to check out the goodies and get autographs from the members of Shonen Knife….

What else can be said? Shonen Knife was fantastic, and continues to be more awesome everyday. There's still a few stops on this tour, and you owe it to yourself to go see them. As for me, I can't wait to see them again. Next time they tour my way, I'm going again for sure. In the meantime, my memories of last Sunday evening will keep me smiling…

1 comment:

thaitanica said...

Great review! Saw then at the Knitting factory in NY and Milford Ct.
I really feel their latest(Perfect Freedom),is their best work ever,and Im familiar with their whole catalog.Very rare for most bands to get better over the years.I really hope Naoko wasnt disapointed with the turnouts.What can one expect with no airplay in this country. Im sorry I missed seeing them in the past. Specially Atsuko,she was so hot looking! Not only are they good looking,they make awesome music.Now my favs over the Ramones,who were always my heros.