All-Female Punk & Avant-garde Bands from Japan

The page features some of the punk, avante-garde all-girl hard-rock bands from Japan. It is part of a series: All-girl Rock Bands from Japan.

Active Bands

The following bands are still active with a few of them being around for a couple of decades already.

Su凸ko D凹koi

Doi (vocals, bass), Oumu (drums, vocals) Rina (guitar, vocals)

Su凸ko D凹koi : ゆうと (Yuto)

Suttoko Dokkoi (stylized as Su凸ko D凹koi) is a pop-punk band (the song in the above video is quite slow and tame in comparison to some of their other songs). The band was formed in 2010 when the band members met after taking an entrance exam for a music university. The band members don’t take themselves too seriously; the band’s name is an expression meaning ‘idiot’ and their songs and videos are often humorous. For example, the song MOMANAIDE focuses on large breasts and 元カノ地獄 is a punkified version of Offenbach’s Can Can melody. (official website: stdk.jimdo.com)

Tsu Shi Ma Mi Re (つしまみれ)

Original line-up: Mari (vocals, guitar), Mizue (drums, vocals), and Yayoi Tsushima (bass guitar, vocals)

Tsu Shi Ma Mi Re: Sex on the Beach

Tsu Shi Ma Mi Re (TSMMR) are an indie band who play in…whatever style they want. They dabble in punk, post-punk, indie rock, indie pop, ska and a host of other genres. The band was formed in 1999 when the band members were attending college in Chiba. They are quite prolific, releasing 11 albums between 2004 an 2017 and recording well over a hundred songs.The band’s name is a kind of play on words.

‘Tsushimamire is a neologism coined by the band, not a real Japanese word. It is a combination of Tsushima (the family name of bassist Yayoi) with “Ma” (from guitarist/vocalist Mari Kono) and “Mi” (from original drummer Mizue Masuda). In addition, mamire means “mixed up” in Japanese: thus the effect is that of “Tsushima (Yayoi), Mari and Mizue all mixed together.’


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tsu_Shi_Ma_Mi_Re

In 2017, Mizue left the band and was replaced by Maiko Takagi.
(official website: tsushimamire.com)

The 5.6.7.8’s

Original lineup: Sachiko Fujiyama (drums), Yoshiko “Ronnie” Fujiyama (vocals, guitar), Rico (guitar), Yoshie (bass).

The 5, 6, 7, 8’s: Woo Hoo

This long-serving retro rockabilly, surf-rock garage band from Tokyo is best known for appearing in Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill. Here they are performing Woo Hoo at a bar in San Francisco. There have been a few lineup changes, but the founding members, sisters Sachiko and Yoshiko Fujiyama, have been with the band since they formed the band in 1986. The band is still active and released their latest single just a few days ago. (official website: www.the5678s.com)

tokyo pinsalocks

Naoko (vocals, keyboards), Hisayo (bass & and programming)

tokyo pinsalocks: YOU

The duo tokyo pinsalocks features Naoko and Hisayo. Their style is influenced by electronica, funk and psychedelic rock. They were originally a quartet, but their their guitarist, Tomocchi, left the band in 2006 and they later lost another band member in 2012, when Reiko (drums & programming) left due to health concerns. The band went on hiatus in 2014 when Naoko became pregnant and only recently became active again, releasing a mini-album early in 2019. http://www.tokyopinsalocks.com/


Defunct Bands

2.5 MESCALINE DRIVE

Core members: Hideko Itami (guitar), Yoko Utsumi (vocals)

MESCALINE DRIVE: West Psychedleia Live

MESCALINE DRIVE was a all-female garage rock band from Osaka active between 1984 and 1993. The band underwent numerous lineup changes with only guitarist Hideko Itami and vocalist Yoko Utsumi appearing in all incarnations. Itami went on to co-found the more widely known band Soul Flower Union.

Thug Murder

Ryoko Naitoh (guitar, vocals), Chisato Ohtsubo (bass, vocals), Yurie Sakuma (drums, vocals)

Thug Murder: Double Fist

Thug Murder were a short-lived punk band active between 1989 and 2001. They went for a traditional seventies-punk-rock style. The band toured with the Dropkick Murphys.


One thought on “All-Female Punk & Avant-garde Bands from Japan

  1. For all-female punk bands, I’m loving The Let’s Go’s after finding out about them a couple of months ago. They play fast and fun ‘old fashioned’ punk with hints of The Ramones, maybe The Undertones at times. They are still a very small band, but since reforming a couple of years ago, with a new line-up including the daughter of Guitar Wolf frontman Seiji, I get the impression they’ve really kicked on. Their look and attitude might be a long way from the spiky hair and safety pins of the 70s, but their sound echoes to the soul of the era.

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