Summer is here! After wiping away the tears of seasonal affective disorder and compulsorily playing Alice Cooper’s “School’s Out”, you know it’s time to break open that long yearned for, sun-baked music you’ve been dreaming of during those dreary winter months. Los Angeles-based Best Coast, led by Bethany Cosentino, is a solid place to start. Although their new release, The Only Place, failed to dazzle, the group’s first album remains an unblemished example of blithe summer pop.
Best described as lo-fi surf pop, the band received a lot of attention in 2010 when they released their debut album Crazy For You. The album echoes with 50’s and 60’s aesthetic, evoking imagery of Chevy wagons laden with surfboards and tanned, skinny, long-haired, blonde boys. Cosentino described the sound as “California beach music with elements of the Ramones, 90’s alternative stuff, and early Beatles drumming.”
The group excels at writing simple, straightforward, pop songs with fuzzed out guitars and light lyrics. Cosentino sings about ephemeral topics, mostly boys, boredom, and the summer. There’s plenty of music out there to help you unravel all those complicated emotions inside you, but as Pitchfork put it, when “you’re lonely and bored and sitting there thinking about how you wish your cat could talk… Best Coast is there.”