Back to newer music this week with some good songs for summer…
Best Coast is a band that has been around for 6 years and released their 4th album a few months ago. I didn’t pay too much attention to them prior to their new album. I heard a few singles and wasn’t overly impressed. Not bad but nothing great that really grabbed my ear. But I heard a track from their new album on the radio recently and it resonated enough with me to check out their new album “California Nights”. I think their new album is very solid and provides some great background music for the summer. The band was founded by the duo of Bethany Cosentino on vocals/guitar and Bobb Bruno on guitar. They later added a permanent drummer, who eventually left the band after their second album. The current drummer is Brady Miller. The band initially drew their inspiration from ‘60s surf rock and girl groups, with a lo fi sound. However, they have evolved their sound where it is now more polished in the studio. They’ve also incorporated more of ‘90s alt rock influence into their music as well. Given the influences, it’s no surprise that it’s good summertime music (and the album cover matches this mood). The new album places Cosentino’s vocals more up front and while the sound is clean, it’s not overly polished. Drums boom, guitars echo and the songs have hooks that should resonate. I think the band has now found a sound that really works for them on all levels. Check out the whole album, the tracks below aren’t necessarily any better than the other 10 songs on the record.
“California Nights” – The title track from the new album was the song that got my attention on the radio. And it sounds great when you’re driving on a sunny day. I didn’t realize the song was five minutes long, which may hamper it from becoming a popular single. The track starts off with some shimmery guitars and effects, while Cosentino’s vocals are up front and prominent with nice reverb (helping them mesh with the guitars). Once the drums kick in, the whole song kicks it up another level. It’s a mid-tempo song, but it carries a lot of heft within its slow and steady pace. The vocal effects on the choruses where her voice just gets lifted off into the sky is a great touch. Bruno also gets in some nice guitar licks in the latter half of the track. I just don’t understand why this is track 8 of 12 on the album.
“In My Eyes” – This track is more uptempo but still has massive pop hooks. Again, big vocals front and center, with some nice background vocal effects. Nice tempo shifts when moving from verses to chorus. Chorus sounds ready made for the radio. Bruno has a great riff on this track that doesn’t go into a repetitive overkill. Just a very straightforward rock/pop song that highlights a different side of the band.