After the split of Boston band Ten To Six, a new power pop trio was formed. SHRUG immediately had an identifiable pop/punk style but really never had the chance to develop. Alex abruptly split from the group in the middle of a stressful gig at the Boathouse on Lake Merced. 'I just didn't want to do it anymore.' Recalls Alex about playing shows, 'So I spent the next few years working on dozen's of song demo's without the distraction of hauling gear around town and the day to day politics of being in an independent band.' At the time, Alex had a whole new batch of songs, many of which have gone unreleased and sit in the archives, but 14 of them made their way onto 1999's BLUEPRINT. A few years were spent toiling around the old basement studio on 32 Desmond street in the Visitation Valley area of San Francisco. Then setting up a short lived studio in Marin County, where final vocals and mixing were completed and the eventual release of BLUEPRINT in late 1999. With eager hopes Alex began talking with producers and independent A&R folks, who had expressed interest in shopping a demo to major labels, but after relocating to Los Angeles, the 'industries' thinking was, as Alex often tells it, 'we'll take track #5 and Track #14, make a new demo and work the power-pop angle.' Disappointment's aside, spending a year in Hollywood, working with former band mate, Crazy Town guitarist TROUBLE and local Ranchero act Los Primos, was time well spent. 'The best thing for my music' says Alex 'is to stay independent and make it the same way I always have. I just had to decide where.' Alex founded Last Stop Records in late 2000 to advocate San Francisco's independent music artists, resulting in a full time job as an engineer in the Last Stop Records Recording Studio.