Best known as a co-founding member and co-primary songwriter of renowned indie dance pop/indie funk act Rubblebucket, Alex Toth’s new side project, Alexander F, which features Steve Marion, Dandy McDowell. Christian Peslak and Noah Rubin as part of the project’s touring band, along with contributions from Kimbra is a decided change in sonic direction for him. Reeling emotionally after the suicides of a couple of musician friends and struggling with living as recovering alcoholic, Toth went to a Buddhist, eleven-day silent meditation retreat in Quebec. And during the silent retreat, a handful of Buddhist-themed experimental punk songs exploded in Toth’s head, which at the time was unexpected and surprising for him, as he’s a jazz trained musician.
While the songs manage to be aggressive, they also manage to be profoundly joyous, boisterous and frenetic as thematically they focus on the Buddhist concepts of freedom from the self, freedom from ego and freedom from the illusion that we’re separate entities. And as you’ll hear on “Swimmers,” the first single off the band’s forthcoming self-titled, full-length album, the band specializes in an infectiously anthemic, frenetic and stompingly boisterous, pop-leaning take on punk rock — that also manages to be a playful and mischievous take on the concept of prenatal memory that imagines how it must have been to be sperm swimming towards an egg, just before fertilization.
And unsurprisingly, the project has quietly started to build up a local and national profile as they’ve shared bills with Speedy Ortiz, Perfect Pussy, Downtown Boys, Colin Stetson, Margaret Glaspy, Mac McCaughan, Delicate Steve and Reptar. So be on the lookout for them; in fact, they’ll be opening for Toth’s primary project Rubblebucket for the final show at Brooklyn’s Manhattan Inn, as well as a date at Gowanus’ Threes Brewing. Check out show dates below.
Nov 11 – Brooklyn, NY @ Manhattan Inn (w/ Rubblebucket)
Nov 13 – Brooklyn, NY @ Threes Brewing