‘A Loud Bash of Teenage Feelings’ will punch you straight in the heart.
Label: Big Scary Monsters
Released: 23rd September 2016
Philadelphia’s Beach Slang, particularly vocalist and guitarist James Alex, have embraced and documented their admiration of The Replacements, and the influence they’ve had on the band. In the way that a previous generation of teenagers will have grown up with them, there’s a sense that ‘A Loud Bash of Teenage Feelings’ has the same ambition, carrying the legacy of their heroes.
This is the sound of sixth form common rooms discovering music to believe in, of first punk shows at the local youth club. With the familiar, distorted vocals in ‘Future Mixtape For The Art Kids’ and the jarring ‘Atom Bomb’; the life-affirming nature of the record peaks with the carefree, anthemic ‘Punks In A Disco Bar’.
It’s a great thematic progression from 2015’s debut ‘The Things We Do To Find People Who Feel Like Us’, breaking down the dynamic between band and fan in favour of community, revisiting youthful excitement and rebellion. The dreamlike adolescence of ‘The Perfect High’ with its more-than-a-little Smiths’ influenced guitar line winds the record down to ‘Warpaint’ – a low-key but powerful call to the outsiders, an encouragement to the kids who don’t belong, asserting “Don’t be afraid to want to be alive”.
Call it the restorative power of punk rock, or the emotive and relatable lyrics, but there’s something about Beach Slang that resonates so deeply. True to the band’s own words, ‘A Loud Bash of Teenage Feelings’ will punch you straight in the heart. Kristy Diaz