© 2024 Iowa Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Best Coast: A Song For What's Left Of Summer

As summer rambles on, Best Coast's bright guitars and lovelorn lyrics are a perfect soundtrack for bumming around the beach on a sweltering day. The band is fronted by Bethany Cosentino, who, among other things, seems to have a songwriter's obsession with boys, laziness and marijuana.

She rounds one of those bases in "Boyfriend," obsessing not over the identity of her sweetheart, but the distress caused by life without him. Twangy surf guitars and self-sung backup vocals are slathered in angst-ridden lyrics, while the story comes to a head as it explains that the affections of another woman might be standing in the way.

It's a sunny sound, with numerous influences affecting the climate. A strong wind blows from the direction of Phil Spector's girl-group production, with an assist from the longing found on classic pop tracks like "California Dreamin'." But Best Coast isn't a revivalist’s oasis. The distorted guitars and booming drums can still hash it out with contemporaries like Dum Dum Girls and Vivian Girls. The crush on "Boyfriend" might not last forever, but it's still a fine reason to lug a boom box around for what's left of the summer.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Anthony Fantano