Album Review: Beach Slang – The Things We Do To Find People Who Feel Like Us (2015 LP)

Angsty pop-punk isn’t a new thing. It isn’t a bad thing. It will always have a place within the lives of adolescents trying to find something to connect with. And frankly, I’m not ashamed to admit that some of my favourite times listening to music now is when I revisit the music I listened to more than a decade ago, as an angsty junior high schooler. For Beach Slang they’ve more than rightly justified the continued existence of pop punk, with the release of 2015’s wordiest debut album, The Things We Do To Find People Who Feel Like Us.

The Pennsylvanian act have been kicking about since 2013, and with their debut LP, they’ve released 10 tracks clocking in at just under a half-hour of power. One thing you notice about Beach Slang is their ability to create summery guitar licks (in line with their band name), while also managing to make the tracks more than impressionable on the listener’s ears. They’re not ear-worms, but they’re tracks that you feel comfortable listening to. It’s an album of songs that makes the listener feel like they’ve got something to connect to and with, within the wider community (I guess this is where the LP title comes into play).

Album opener “Throwaways” is far from that, with its brutish opening before it closes out with wailing guitars and an amalgamation of all things you come to expect from a ‘guitar’ band. If I had to compare it to another track from another band, it would be a ‘roided up, slightly disheveled version of Cheatahs’ “The Swan”. “Bad Art & Weirdo Ideas” is infectious with its hook, before it slowly exits with the epitome of ‘do-do-do’s.

Every albums needs a ballad of heartfelt earnestness, and this comes about on “Too Late To Die Young”, a commentary on the fact that front-man James Alex is 40 years of age. Perhaps a look at how he’s now the older guy still going to shows with the youth, “Too Late To Die Young” feels as though it’s a story told from the eyes of a well travelled man. “Young & Alive” is manic and slightly bipolar, as it can’t decide whether it wants to be a slow builder or a punch in the face of aggressive sound. Whatever it is, it’s pretty bloody good.

For Beach Slang, this album is about trying to afford anyone the opportunity to find something (or someone) to connect with; whether that is your past self trying to find an understanding of who you are/were, or the current you, just trying to enjoy life as it is. Either way, The Things We Do does a stellar job in getting its point across. One way or another, it’s a belter.

Review Score: 7.6 out of 10.

The Things We Do To Find People Who Feel Like Us is out now


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