STRFKR is a band for Millennials. It's something you can tell from the minute you walk up to the venue: the gaggle of college students looking for an extra ticket to the sold out show. The skimpy clothes. The beards. Kids thrive on this pulsing, percussion driven electrona-mess created by four guys from Portland, Ore. And they should, because it's FKing great.
In truth, the guys of STRFKR don't say much in their songs. With the exception of an occasional sound bite or a string of nearly incoherent lyrics, the bulk of their arrangements focus on raw instrumentation, backed by meaty synth beats. On stage, the story is the same.
As the act proved Tuesday night, there's really no need for transitions - the awkward banter where the artists makes a joke about the rain. They're from Portland. They get it. So besides the occasional "thanks, Seattle," or "you guys fucking rock," they skip the bullshit and stick to what they do best.
Amongst the strobes and graphics and high-energy instrumental breaks, there's a lot going on. The avid fans - the ones who've been following the act since 2007 - sing-along to hits like "Bury Us Alive," "Medicine" and "Rawnald Gregory Erickson The Second," as well as newer cuts from 2012's Miracle Mile. But, in general, the vocals are second to everything else. And it's not like it really matters - because you aren't there to listen to the words of a song. You're there to feel them.
It's chaotic and loud and hyperactive. From one second to the next it's fuzzy, then clear. In another setting, on another night, it might feel disconnected. But not here, amidst kids who spend most their time sending links, texts and emails to their closest friends. Then the balloons come, and the sensors in this crazy musical brain explode - go into overdrive. And it feels so FKing good.
Overheard in the crowd:
How are you going to bone her knowing she has a Hotmail account?
Millennial confession: As a fellow 20-something, I support this being a totally valid concern. I mean, Hotmail is like the new AIM screen name, right? Note: If you still have one, YOU CAN'T SIT WITH US.