Child actress and singer/songwriter Bethany Cosentino started Best Coast with guitarist Bobb Bruno in 2009—and they immediately became the talk of the Los Angeles music scene. On Friday night, Best Coast played a sold-out show at Pappy and Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace—and made it clear there’s nowhere for them to go but upward.
Best Coast’s sound mixes lo-fi, garage rock and surf pop—and I even hear some country-Western as well. Best Coast attracts a typical indie Los Angeles music crowd—as well as a lot teenage girls. Such was indeed the case at Pappy’s Friday night.
Opening band Lovely Bad Things put on a loud performance with a deep bass sound. The punk-pop group was a hit with the audience. The band’s legit pop-punk sound has earned the group slots on tours with acts such as Dinosaur Jr., King Tuff and The Cribs.
Best Coast’s intro track was the Metallica’s “Battery.” Kudos to them for the selection. The show started off with “Last Year,” from Best Coast’s 2012 album The Only Place. Early in the set, before playing a new song called “Heaven Sent,” Cosentino mentioned the band’s current tour of smaller California venues is in anticipation of a new album, California Nights, due out in May.
Cosentino noted that they rarely play “The End” during live performances, yet they decided to include it in the setlist for the night. The one song that managed to get a stir out of the audience, as well as a sing-along, was “When I’m With You.”
Cosentino mentioned she checked the band’s Twitter feed and saw that many Los Angeles fans were present—and then said she’d seen a tweet mentioning someone was there from Canada. The fans from Canada caught her attention; she pointed them out and thanked them for coming all the way to Pioneertown for the show.
Love songs and break-up songs have helped build rock ’n’ roll since its inception. Best Coast’s love songs and break-up songs are deep with an edge—yet at the same time catchy and fun, while not coming off as cheesy or “emo.”
Toward the end of the set, Cosentino praised Best Coast fans for correcting her and telling her the correct lyrics whenever she messes a song up.
Best Coast’s three-song encore featured “Each and Everyday,” “Bratty B” (which is about “a bitch,” Cosentino explained) and closer “Boyfriend.” Cosentino joked that it was about Bobb Bruno.
Considering that Best Coast came out of some of Los Angeles’ best-known independent music venues, it’s not a shocker that their live performance lives up to the hype. Whether you’re a boy, a girl or a man approaching middle age such as myself, Best Coast is worth seeing—as long as you like rock music.
- Last Year
- This Lonely Morning
- Heaven Sent
- The End
- When I’m With You
- When the Sun Don’t Shine
- Something in the Way
- Crazy for You
- California Nights
- The Only Place
- How They Want Me to Be
- Our Deal
- Summer Mood
- I Want To
- Fade Away
- Feeling OK
- Each and Everyday
- Bratty B
- Do You Love Me