Best Coast | The Only Place
After their incredible debut album “Crazy for You,” can the California duo best themselves in this sophomore effort?
In 2010 a pleasant little surprise landed in my lap. A CD of fuzzy guitar sounds, smothered with a sort of haziness around it and drowned in muffly, relaxing, vocals that spoke tales of heartbreak, love, getting ridiculously high, and playing with the cat delivered by California surf-pop band Best Coast in their debut album Crazy for You. I remember being completely enamored by just how relaxing and chill the album was, even when it went into a dark place.
The album was so melancholy and personal, but thanks to singer Bethany Cosentino, whose new line of clothing for Urban Outfitters drops this month, her lovely soothing voice still made me just want to sit on the hood of my car and stare at the stars. I was excited for their newly released sophomore album The Only Place as soon as it was announced, wondering if it could surpass their first or be doomed to reproduce a slightly weaker sound (*ahem* Sleigh Bells). I must say that it does indeed deliver, and then some.
Expounding on the lo-fi California surf-pop that brought them to national attention with the help of producer/composer Jon Brion (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, I heart Huckabees, and producer for Katy Perry and Kanye West), Best Coast unleashes a second album that completely blows away their freshman effort in terms of lyrics and music.
Bethany seems like a completely new singer, combining the hazy, breathy tone we’re used to with this new sort of rockish persona to great results, showering her voice over every song, not letting the music overtake her sound. Songs like Up All Night and Dreaming My Life Away hearken back to the hazy, dreamy songs of their first album. She also takes herself into a darker place than previous (focusing less on just relaxing and smoking blunts) delving into a more personal vein about relationships in songs like My Life and How They Want Me to Be. Best Coast’s other half, Bobb Bruno, brings these themes to life with his music, turning the album into one of the more relaxing ones released this year.
I have to say that Best Coast truly outdid themselves with this album. With its catchy hooks, dreamy atmosphere, and soothing vocals it’s one of the albums I’ll have playing over and over again in my car this summer.
Download Best Coast’s first single off their new album, “The Only Place” at their website, and check out the Drew Barrymore directed video for “Our Deal” (from Crazy for You) below: