Philadelphia punks Beach Slang hit it big last year, delivering their debut album The Things We Do to Find People Who Feel Like Us to critical acclaim. They’re currently in the midst of a North American tour, but it looks as if they’ll be completing the run of shows without their original drummer JP Flexner.
In a Facebook post, Flexner announced that he has left the band to further pursue a career in design and illustration. Things seem to have ended fairly amicably, though, with the drummer wishing his bandmates, co-workers and crew all the best.
“When ‘Slang started to take off, I would tell myself (and anyone who would listen) that I’d would always be happy to play and tour endlessly as long as it was fun — and no matter how that comes to an end, I would just be glad to have had the opportunity to experience all of that in the first place,” he wrote. “I can very sincerely say to you today — that is in fact the case.”
He continued, putting a call out to friends and fans to get in touch about any design-related work projects or just to make plans to drink, bowl or play baseball now that he’s got some more spare time on his hands.
Read the full farewell message below.
Flexner’s announcement comes two months after rumours that the band had broken up after a disastrous gig in Salt Lake City.
“Westerberg was playing his favorite guitar […]. Suddenly, he grabbed it by the body and slammed the neck down on the amplifier and splintered it completely. Afterwards, soundman Brendan McCabe approached him in shock: ‘Paul what the hell did you do that for. How could you wreck that guitar? You loved that thing.’ ‘Well that’s the difference between me and you Brendan,’ he told him. ‘You cherish things you love. Me? I destroy them.'” The first time I read this part of Trouble Boys, I thought, “Fuck, maybe there’s really something to that. Maybe there’s romanticism in destroying the things you love.” Or maybe I’m just a messed up kid who thinks he never deserved any of this. I don’t know. After I left the stage in Salt Lake, thinking I was ending Beach Slang, I was walking down the street, back to the hotel, when a girl from the show ran up to me, hugged me so sincerely, and said, “Don’t do this. We need you.” Straight away, I realized I was wrong. There is nothing sweet, there is no light, and there is nothing romantic when the thing you love is broken. Salt Lake, for the car crash last night and Boise, for fumbling on you, I am gigantically sorry—even bigger than that. I am going to make good on making it up to you. Cross my heart. This, and all of you, mean too much to me. I love you with thunder. I love you all the way. So, yeah, Seattle, we are still coming to your good city, wild-eyed and ready, our hearts bashed back into shape. If you’re still in, we are. For us—all of us, James Alex
Beach Slang currently have a hefty string of live commitments lined up, including a couple shows at Gridlock Festival in Halifax this Saturday (July 9). You can see the full list of their upcoming shows here.