There's no good way to describe a band's grassroots rise in popularity in this day and age. "Word of mouth" is a weird way to describe the internet's ability to create a fanbase without any kind of commercial attention, but "word of keyboard" is a terrible alternative.
At any rate, I came across Beach Slang just as their peers were starting to call attention to them. By the time they were gracing NPR they already had a huge fan following and the support of countless music blogs and journalists. For good reason too. Their music is passionate and powerful, while staying damn fun to listen to. They released the first track from their forthcoming debut album today, so I'm taking the opportunity to post a full gallery from their Valentine's Day show with Cursive. This set was an absolute treat to cover, and reminded me how challenging it is to shoot photos while singing and dancing along. I can't recommend catching them live enough.