Beach Slang have removed guitarist Ruben Gallego from the band after the emergence of sexual assault allegations, as Pitchfork points out. “Although this occurred four years ago and prior to him joining Beach Slang, we cannot in good conscience continue with him,” the band said in a statement posted to their Facebook earlier today. “We believe survivors and we want to believe Ruben, but until we learn more information, we don’t feel it’s appropriate for him to be a part of Beach Slang.”
The band is scheduled to kick off the tour in support of their new album, A Loud Bash Of Teenage Feelings, tonight in Washington, DC, and each show will now be a solo acoustic set featuring only frontman James Alex. At the end of the tour, the band says they will make a donation to RAINN.
Here’s their full statement:
For us, Beach Slang has always been and will always be a safe place for everyone. It was built to be welcoming. It was built to be soft. If we are going to continue to exist, we have to exist in this way.
There have been allegations involving sexual assault and our guitarist, Ruben. Although this occurred four years ago and prior to him joining Beach Slang, we cannot in good conscience continue with him. We believe survivors and we want to believe Ruben, but until we learn more information, we don’t feel it’s appropriate for him to be a part of Beach Slang.
We strongly support survivors and organizations such as www.rainn.org and we encourage you to use their resources if you need help. We will be making a donation to RAINN at the conclusion of this tour to do our part in helping to ensure these resources are there for those who need it.
Given the timing of this, our only option is to play as Quiet Slang (James solo acoustic). I mean, giving up never seems to fix things. Maybe today, we can start putting some stuff back together. The Bleached Slang tour starts tonight in Washington, DC. Maybe that’s a good place to start.
Keep each other safe,
UPDATE: Gallego responded to the accusations in a statement to Pitchfork. Read it below.
I’d like to say that what’s important to me is that people stand with survivors and that we continue to foster an environment where people aren’t afraid to speak out against their abusers.
Although I do feel like what’s being said about me is inaccurate it’s irrelevant. I think it’s totally possible for people to see a situation completely differently and if this person feels I harmed them then that’s what I care about and I want to make that right.
I also care deeply about how this affects other victims of sexual assault specifically the ones who attend Beach Slang shows and felt that sticking around would further isolate them.
James [Alex] and Ed [McNulty] are the sweetest most caring people I’ve ever known and I feel they did the right thing and I will always support them.