James Alex is pretty much the poster child for pop-punk band lead singers everywhere. Alex not only dons the atypical school-boy punk uniform of a collared shirt, argyle sweater, jacket and accompanying corduroy pants very well, but he, and the rallying anthems he churns out with his boisterous band Beach Slang, embody the genre's precious odes to adolescence and positively charged musical expression that’s been diminished by most bands in recent years.
Since Beach Slang's unexpected entrance to the mainstream in 2014, with the release of their two critically acclaimed 7-inches Cheap Thrills On A Dead End Street and Who Would Ever Want Something So Broken?, the Philadelphia foursome has become widely known for their explosive sound - an amalgamation of whirlwind guitars and Alex's angsty lyrical sincerity - and their energetic live show. Beach Slang pick up where their two rookie EPs left off, on their debut full-length, The Things We Do to Find People Who Feel Like Us. It's filled with ten power-punk anthems, whose output lands squarely in the good old American indie rock territory; broad, sincere, and filled with the yearning of a young person's mindset.
The Things We Do shows a mature band that is not afraid to be exactly what it is; optimistic, hungry for more, and relentlessly pushing the cultural expectations to give up on such idealistic outlooks. Think hopeful Americana a la Springsteen. The first song on the record, "Throwaways," is like the band's punk response to "Born to Run." And other songs “Noisy Heaven,” “Hard Luck Kid,” and "Young & Alive," fly a flag for optimism and plow over the same three or four topics of being young, feeling alive, getting drunk, listening to and playing music loud.
Feel Like Us, touts the sincere and overwhelmingly positive notions you have as a kid taking on the world for the first time, except are sung by someone on the other side, and nostaligically looking back at the ideals that are always worth keeping in touch with, no matter how far removed from them you get.
Watch Beach Slang's video for "Bad Art & Weirdo Ideas," below.