STRFKR at the Observatory, Feb. 23, 2012

The Observatory
Feb. 24, 2012

Starfucker was last in Orange County in January, but they might as well never have left.The first of their two-show Southern California mini break from recording left fans cheering their name as they dispersed across the parking lot of The Observatory.
The night started low key. A line of bearded hipsters, toned-down Kandi Kids and highschoolers stretched around the dividers outside, waiting an extra half hour for the doors to open. Once inside, fans were met by opening band, White Arrows, who were dressed in blotchy tie-dyed dress shirts.

White Arrows, eager as they were, started out on the rough side. This being only their second live show, their lack of experience was apparent. The front man's voice strained through the first two songs, scaring away a fair amount of people from the dance floor. It wasn't until they debuted new song “Fireworks in the Sea” that White Arrows finally settled, finishing the rest of their set as if they were an entirely different band.

Following them was Robert Delong, who spent a month as the Observatory's resident DJ all-around electro musician. The transition between the two artists was difficult at first; Delong's wubs contrasted harshly with the MGMT and Passion Pit-esque music of White Arrows. Delong quickly became a crowd favorite, however, luring a fair amount of people back onto the dance floor with his Wii-Mote assisted mix of dupstep, pop, house and glitch samples.

After Delong, the crowd began to buzz, searching for any signs of Starfucker in the crew moving equipment. As the band's instruments began making their way onto the stage, bringing Joshua Hodges, Shawn Glassford and Keil Corcoran with them, the energy level both visually and audibly spiked.

Everyone got on their feet and started dancing as Starfucker began to play, including a patron who wore a cast and had been seated for most of the night and the band photographer, who had been circling the stage wearing only his boxers. As the band transitioned into their second song, “Bury Us Alive,” the first single off of “Reptilians,” the dance floor erupted into full cheer.

By the time the third track, the chip-tune driven “Holly,” began every single person in the Observatory had pushed as far forward as they could, clearing the dining areas the crowding the second levels.

Half way through Starfucker's set, fans began to crowdsurf. Though initially chaotic, many fans slowly began making their way towards the stage. As the lights began to fade to black between songs, all that was visible were the silhouettes of fans flailing their arms around in front of the band.

After a final fade to black, the monitors began to output pure noise. The band could be seen in the regularly lit back room from the nearly completely dark dance floor. After a few minutes of band talk, Starfucker reemerged, plunging their way into a three song encore.

As plucky chords of “Rawnald Gregory Erickson the Second” began to play, the energy crescendoed. The crowd became a rapibly boiling pot, throwing more and more fans up onto the stage. Where bassist Shawn Glassford joined them for a few moments.

The show ended with the band's rendition of “Girls Just Want to Have Fun”: A perfect dancey ending to a near flawless set.

Critic's Bias: I may have spent a fair amount of time before, after, and during the show in the company of a really attractive girl.

Overheard in the Crowd: “The kids standing in front of me right now make me want to destroy things.”

Random Notebook Dump: Starfucker might be called Starfucker, but that doesn't mean you should be grinding that on the dance floor.

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