Beach Slang Biography:
Beach Slang are a band who have garnered a lot of attention considering that they’ve only released two 7-inches, 2014’s Cheap Thrills On A Dead End Street and its companion Who Would Ever Want Something So Broken? Refreshingly this Philadelphia-based act have built their hype the old-fashioned way, without any gimmicks or marketing teams, which makes sense when you consider that frontman and writer James Alex cut his teeth in the Pennsylvania pop-punk act Weston while drummer JP Flexner and bassist Ed McNulty also play in buzzed about projects such as Ex-Friends and Crybaby. However there’s something indefinable about Beach Slang’s music that evokes the spirit of punk and juxtaposes it into something that’s as brutally honest as it is infectiously catchy.“When this whole thing started it was like, ‘Alright, i’m going to get to hear my sappy little songs played loud and interact with other human beings again,’ the admittedly shy Alex says looking back on Beach Slang’s existence. “Then one day this really sweet explosion happened and Beach Slang became a thing that mattered to people.” As anyone who has seen Beach Slang live can attest, it matters to people a lot including the group’s peers like Cursive who hand-selected Beach Slang to open for them on their upcoming headlining tour. “I used to skate with this really sweet girl who would refer to the way I spoke as ‘beach slang’ and I’ve never shaken that off,” Alex continues. “The really soft parts of your childhood, I suppose, have a way of sticking around. I like that.”
That feeling of youth and vulnerability also lie at the core of Beach Slang’s music, which is part punk, part pop and all catharsis. It references the ghosts of The Replacements but keeps one foot firmly rooted in the present. It’s fun and it’s serious. It’s sad but it isn’t. It’s Beach Slang. Enjoy it and look out for the band’s debut full-length later this year because they’re still just getting started.
For Dave Hause the American dream is a broken promise, a childhood ideal that has been shattered by the reality of the past two decades. On the musician’s second solo album, Devour, Hause scours the foundation of that crumbled dream in an attempt to discover how everything we believed growing up could have turned out so differently. The album, initially written to become the third record from Hause’s rock band The Loved Ones, follows his 2011 solo debut Resolutions, a disc that allowed the musician to understand his potential as his own artist.As Hause, a Philadelphia native, began penning new music for a new album from The Loved Ones, it became clear that the group, who had taken a break after their second album, had stalled. These songs, however, which showcased a clear thematic journey, were meant to be vocalized by Hause and over the past few years he transformed them into Devour. Hause solidified the album’s sequence before even going into the studio, aiming to craft a narrative arc that drove the album from its dark, heavy first half into a lighter, more hopeful tone. A thematic line of melody runs through the songs, reflecting the overarching ideas in the music itself. The disc explores the heartbreak of shattered childhood promises of a better world and concludes with optimistic hope.“Devour is about that inherent American appetite,” Hause says. “It’s in all the songs in some degree. There’s a reason why Tony Soprano became such a huge American icon – he’s this guy with this insane appetite for women and food and power. I think for the American public to latch onto a figure like that says something. Some of the positive things about America come from that as well, but there’s a real sense of reckoning that comes from devouring everything in front of you. Is it ever enough?”The rock songs, tinged with folk and punk tones, are firmly rooted in Hause’s own upbringing and the sensibility that comes from growing up in a blue collar neighborhood driven by the lingering anticipation of upward mobility. In the lyrics, the fulcrum around which the album revolves, Hause grapples with this working class ideal and the fact that America’s recent shifts have caused it to no longer fit. From “The Great Depression,” which centers on the unfulfilled promises laid out in the Reagan-era ‘80s, to the more specific-minded relationships of “Father’s Son,” Devour comes to terms with the loss of youthful innocence in a rapidly evolving world.“I wanted to shine a light back on what was going on,” Hause says. “It was a topic that was close to me and I wanted to write about it. In the end, it leaves you with the idea that if you have music and love you may be able to save yourself. It’s going to be alright. That simple John Lennon concept of all you need is love. That’s how I wrote myself out of the dark and the music begs the listener to come take that risk as well.”Once Hause had the track sequence and overall narrative in place he enlisted producer Andrew Alekel along with musician and co-producer Mitchell Townsend. The producers helped Hause collect the right musicians to build the songs in the best way possible, including My Morning Jacket keyboardist Bo Koster, Social Distortion drummer David Hidalgo Jr. and bassist Bob Thomson. Frightened Rabbit’s Scott Hutchison, Alkaline Trio’s Matt Skiba and The Watson Twins also appear on several tracks. Hause and his crew recorded the album over several weeks from mid-February to mid-March at Grandmaster Recorders LTD. in Hollywood, CA, focusing on giving each song the right tone while maintaining an overall musical aesthetic that helps tie the lyrical themes together.
“It was this group effort,” Hause says. “A lot of trust went into letting Andrew and Mitch be the architects of the record. I trusted that we would get in there and they would know who was right for the music. They wanted to bring these people together in this great studio to get a record that was greater than the sum of its parts. I’m glad I trusted them because it was great to work with everyone there.”
For the musician, who has toured with Social Distortion, The Gaslight Anthem, Bouncing Souls and Chuck Ragan since launching his solo career, Devour is a cathartic release, both sonically and lyrically. Hause recently relocated to California and is committed to pursing the music he feels best reflects him individually. The journey on the album, the search for the light at the end of the tunnel, mirrors his own trek. The record closes with the delicate introspection of “Benediction,” a song that pulls lyrical lines from all the tracks that precede it. After all the ruined promises and the culminating disappointments of the world, Hause ends the album with the sentiment of possibility. “It’s love my friend in the end that can save us tonight,” he sings. “So are you in?”
Named “The Next Big Thing” by Seattle Weekly, the band combines aspects of early MBV and Swervedriver with the likes of Superdrag and Cloud Nothings.
Hannah Racecar burst into the Tacoma/Seattle scene in 2015, starting out as a trio comprised of guitarist/vocalist Adam Bredlau, bassist Seth Bernard, and drummer Ian Call. The 3 put out a self titled EP (recorded in SOTA Studios) in October of 2015. Soon after, they discovered the missing link of their sound with synth player Austin Milner. Milner rounded out their sound and completed the line up.
Since being a quartet, the group has played with bands Beach Slang, Pinkwash, Season of Strangers, Cool Void, and many other fuzzy bands. The band has also participated in the 2016 Seagaze festival, as well as Tacoma’s 2016 Music and Art in Wright Park, and the 2016 Pierce County First Night event.
November of 2016 brought on the change of Seth moving to guitar, and Austin taking on bass as well as synth.
Recording of the first LP took place in December 2016, and followed with the release of their single “Never Had” in February 2017.
The band’s debut album “Renovations” released on June 21st, 2017.