LIVE: STRFKR Gets Party Going At The Fonda (03/02/13)
By Alejandra Gomez on March 5, 2013
Los Angeles, California
March 2, 2013
There are times when words don’t need to be said in order to understand the moment, you just need to be in the right place at the right time to be part of it. Watching STRFKR perform their sold-out show at The Fonda just happened to be one of those moments. Frontman, Josh Hodges, previously mentioned to us that they enjoyed playing intimate venues and creating an experience that was “interesting and unique.” Together with bandmates, Shawn Glassford, Keil Corcoran and Patrick Morris, the Portland group put on a memorable show filled with everything from pulsating LED lights, electronic sounds and an array of dancing men in costumes (including Gumby!) throwing balloons into the audience. Even when not much was said in between numbers, you simply had to feel the music to know you were a part of a party.
The crowd started dancing as soon as the first notes of “Hard Smart Beta,” played through their ears and pulsed through the lights of their 8-foot tall LED wall. It was clear that STRFKR wanted this to be a party, and the energy of the crowd only grew stronger as the show progressed. As they transitioned into “Sazed” there was still no word to the audience, but everyone was too busy dancing and swaying to the sounds and lights to even care. In between songs, the stage grew dark, leaving only a couple of pulsating lights before a thunderous boom along with a flash of bright lights to keep us on our toes.
The only time that the band really came forward to speak to the audience was when Glassford took the microphone and gave the LA crowd a greeting. “What’s up, Los Angeles?! We are so happy to be here and it’s kind of a hometown show for us! We kind of live here now...so it’s good to be home. Thanks for having us!” That little message was enough to get the crowd cheering and ready to dance for what now felt like a more intimate show.
The set held a wonderful balance of songs ranging from their earlier favorites to songs from their latest album, Miracle Mile. The group truly got comfortable towards the middle of their set and the crowd could feel it as they began to jump, dance, and crowd surf toward the front of the stage. Hodges and Glassford exchanged amused glances about the crazed pit in front of them throughout the entierity of the show.
The show really started picking up with their latest single, “While I’m Alive,” that hyped up the crowd by engaging them to sing along. What had initially felt like an electronic pop concert suddenly changed into a fast-paced club party. Everyone’s hands shot up into the air as they jumped up and down from their place as they smoothly transitioned into “Medicine.” There were no more lulls in the songs that followed, which made the experience that much more enjoyable. The lights dimmed, allowing the wall to shine and provide the pulsating visuals that went along with the beats of the songs. By the time they played “Julius” and “Leave It All Behind,” everyone was completely immersed in the music.
The highlight of the night came with instrumental favorite, “Quality Time,” when the band was joined by men in costumes that threw balloons into the crowd. Gumby and a panda could be seen dancing and jumping on the stage as the band members completely belted out the song for their fans to enjoy. The energy on stage stayed strong for their last two numbers “Millions” and “Bury Us Alive.”
The band left the stage with a brief thank you as the stage grew dark with only the LED wall flashing at moments. Immediately, the audience shouted out for “one more song” and after a couple minutes of waiting, STRFKR took the stage again and played four more songs including “Malmo” “Girls Just Want To Have Fun” and favorites “Rawnald Gregory Erickson The Second” and “Boy Toy” (much to one particular fan’s rejoice). The audience stayed captivated and immersed in that extended moment of synths, lights and a collective movement. F
STRFKR set list
01. Hard Smart Beta
03. German Love
06. Say To You
08. Beach Monster
11. Mystery Cloud
13. While I’m Alive
16. Leave It All Behind
17. Quality Time
19. Bury Us Alive
21. Rawnald Gregory Erickson The Second
22. Girls Just Want To Have Fun (Cyndi Lauper Cover)
23. Boy Toy