Release Date 09/23/2008
Starfucker is a name that is not so much a rejection of the seriousness in the music industry, but a commitment to the playful spirit of their music; an understanding between three multi-instrumentalists in a ethereal galaxy of drums, drum machines, keyboards, guitars, turntablism, and a live performance powerful enough to transcend the guilt of actually having fun at a live show.
Josh Hodges, chief songwriter and home-recording wizard, built Starfucker in the summer of 2007 on an almost philosophical foundation; one that pairs the fragility and impermanence of life with the need to have fun and enjoy the present moment. The project was a significant shift from Sexton Blake, a more melancholy indie group that started with Josh's home-recordings incepted during an emotionally anxious 4 year stay in New York City. Josh moved back home with fellow Portland native Ryan Biornstad, eventually releasing two Sexton Blake albums including the 80's covers CD 'Plays the Hits,' on Expunged Records. But Josh was depressed, seeking out the help of long time friend Rawnald Gregory Erickson the Second. Rawn hypnotized him to help relinquish his anxiety and hopelessness. Josh also began meditating. "I went traveling to Thailand and went on a ten day meditation retreat called Vipassana, and that kind of changed everything for me. The hardest part was not masturbating."
Josh soon discovered his philosophies could be shared through a new project, and asked Ryan to join in on his endeavor. After being introduced to Shawn Glassford, the three became friends without effort, and the band Starfucker was formed; following their shared dreams and philosophies from the stage to the basketball court. "The greatest thing about being in this band is that we all really like each other and share the same goals and ideas. We just want to have fun. We want everyone to have fun," says Ryan.
And have fun they do. The experience of seeing Starfucker's live performance delivers a certain nostalgia; a reminder of what it was like to be a teenager: inspired, curious, open, hungry for anything new, and smiling uncontrollably. Whether dressed in '80s era Brooklyn hip-hop style, electro clash, or full drag, the three bring a new experience and unpredictability to every show. Shawn Glassford gets a bit sassy while plucking his bass - playing coy and cute - which is paradoxical to the deliberate intensity he gives the drum kit. Josh, just across the way, is more nonchalant with his drum playing, sometimes bouncing his head effortlessly and smiling between trips to the microphone where he delivers a beautiful, naturally angelic vocal style reminiscent of a trip through the milky-way, stopping off here and there to say hi to the keyboard waiting patiently for his attention. Up in front, centered between the two drum kits, Ryan enjoys the stage with dance moves that could challenge the most practiced talent while switching between guitar, keyboard, record scratching, and tucking his vocals neatly in the mix.
After seeing Starfucker perform, Dylan Magierek of Badman Recording Co. was blown away. "Seeing them play for that first time was one of those very rare occasions when I immediately felt I had to work with these guys. Their sound is absolutely infectious and they have all the elements I look for in a great band." Josh and Dylan went to work at the Typefoundary to layer in some extras to Josh's home recordings, rounding out the album into a cohesive package of electro indie pop with a light hip-hop after-taste. It's like playing an 8-bit video game where your primary objective is to over-come heartbreak and an obsession with death, your only weapon a love lazer mounted on a space bike that zaps out bright red blips and neon bleeps. This may be the music Josh was playing for his imaginary audience of aliens when he was a kid. It's poppy, it's catchy, and it's palatable, and that's a good thing.
"If I was a betting man, I'd bet Starfucker will be the breakout Portland band of 2008. The kids love Josh Hodges' low-fi dance-pop steez, and they show up in droves whether he plays house parties or clubs." - Willamette Week