Stranger Than Paradise

The '80s hair metal tribute band Stranger Than Paradise will headline the 'Birthday Bash for Mama Bear' at 9 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 26, at Cafe Acoustic Concert Hall.

For the ‘80s hair metal cover band Stranger Than Paradise, things seem to fall into place at the right time.

Looking for its next chance to show off its neon spandex, soaring guitar solos and gigantic choruses, the band found the perfect occasion with Cafe Acoustic co-owner Christina Grimes’ birthday.

“She always treats the bands well and it’s a super fun room to play. We were talking dates and she’s like, ‘You know, that is my birthday.’ I’m like, ‘I’ve got the perfect band for you,’” drummer Brian Smith said.

Performing at the “Birthday Bash for Mama Bear,” Stranger Than Paradise will break out both classic and deep cut ‘80s hair metal songs starting at 9 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 26, at Cafe Acoustic Concert Hall, 1918 Frederick Ave.

When the band started about a year ago, the members did it out of love for the genre and the fun groups like Def Leppard, Kicks and Danger Danger.

“It’s just kind of fun (to) bring that excitement and the whole vibrant look, imagery, sound, everything, just to kind of remind everyone of more carefree times,” Smith said.

One thing the band didn’t expect was a full-on revival of the genre through the HBO Max and DC Comics show “Peacemaker,” which famously features several hair metal bands.

“I think the soundtrack itself is fantastic and definitely a really cool vibe. I’ve kind of thrown that at the guys. I’m like, ‘Hey, we’ve been talking about doing the song. Guess what? It’s on ‘Peacemaker,’” he said.

The hope is that the resurgence in interest in the genre will bring more people out to re-live those days in the ‘80s with Stranger Than Paradise. Smith said he’ll be happy with anyone who shows up to have a good time and pay homage to Grimes and Cafe Acoustic.

“We’ll play a lot of classics so you can sing along and the girls would get out on the dance floor and have a good time. And then maybe a few songs you’ve never heard before. (We) might turn you on to some other acts that you maybe weren’t aware of,” he said.

Admission to the show is $5. It is open to everyone 21 and older. A costume contest will take place for those dressed in their favorite ‘80s hair metal look.

Andrew Gaug can be reached at

Follow him on Twitter: @NPNOWGaug

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