STRFKR Brings First Avenue to Outer Space

STRFKR at First Avenue

I definitely felt a little odd walking into First Avenue on Saturday since it was the Nicki Minaj concert across the street and everyone was dressed in pink. But I was proud to wear my stage black attire to be in the photo pit for the one and only STRFKR. STRFKR was a band I found a long time ago, with my partner also being a fan, so I was very excited to cover this band. On tour with them was Chromatics Ruth Radelet and her new band, and STRFKR’s friend happysadface, who was the first to take the stage.

Happy Sad Face

An artist from Joshua Tree, California, this was a total surprise for me. Their stage presence was a sort of comedic skit, along with psychedelic pop tunes. It was mesmerizing to see what they were going to do next, and they had the crowd enthralled in their performance. Happy Sad Face’s music is based on the film Happy Sad Face, and is releasing an album this upcoming winter.

Ruth Radelet

Ruth Radelet who was formerly the lead vocalist for Chromatics, is now touring under her name with a new band. This was a bit of whiplash of openers, with Happy Sad Face’s comedic skit to Ruth Radelet’s slower melodies and ethereal vocals. The last time she played at First Avenue was five years ago, and the artist seemed happy to be back again. 


Immediately when STRFKR took stage the vibes were happy, magical, and full of fun. With the noodle-like blow up guys at the ends of the stage, and confetti flying through the air, this band did it all. With their electronic alternative and indie sounds, they were wooing First Avenue. At first the venue wasn’t super full, but became crazy packed once they took stage. And I mean crazy packed. They had some back up dancers who wore outfits and danced around the stage during their set, and a projector portraying various visuals throughout the set. The production was fantastic. 

Something they did that I love when a band does this is they played their most popular songs interspersed rather than all at the beginning and end. I feel that this keeps the crowd going all night. At one point as well, Joshua Hodges and Keil Corcoran switched places at vocals and drums. The overall talent of all of the members of this crew was great to experience. 

After the song “Open Your Eyes”, Hodges explained that a line from the song was inspired by First Avenue (or Minnesota). This made me love this song even more. At the end their friend Happy Sad Face joined on stage as an astronaut backup dancer and got the crowd going once again. The smallest astronaut ended up crowd surfing, even doing the splits at one point. STRFKR’s set and production kept the crowd entertained all night, and even if you were just coming to see live music I am sure you left a fan of this band. 

Check out other shows in the Twin Cities HERE.

Check out other tour dates HERE.