Fans of Beach Slang need no introduction to the talent of James Alex, frontman and guitarist for the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania band that has stolen more than just a few hearts since their 2013 inception. The 40-something songwriter is fond of experimentation, getting drunk and loud, and most importantly, embracing the unexpected.
Last year, Alex decided to flip the script and formed a side project for himself, lovingly titled Quiet Slang, where he re-envisions Beach Slang songs with piano, strings, and minimal accompaniment. “I was asked to do an NPR Tiny Desk. So, it was just me and my guitar, and I got so much feedback from that where people were like, you should do a record like that. There's just, it really changes it in a really great way, and the lyric becomes the sort of a center point of focus,” Alex explains over the phone from the road.
After meeting Dan Delaney (cello) and Keith Giosa (piano), Alex had the team in place to take his rowdy rock ’n’roll songs, which are typically played more in the vein of a band like The Replacements all hopped up on Red Bull and vodka, and put a Stephen Merritt (The Magnetic Fields) spin on them. The result is rich, lovely, and well worth your time.
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Quiet Slang play Saturday, June 30, at Valley Bar. Tickets are $13 to $15 at ticketfly.com.