By Kevin Zimmerman
Best Coast : Right Time, Right Place
Bursting out of the L.A. music scene in 2009 with a signature lo-fi fuzzy, surf-rock-ish sound, Best Coast – consisting of singer/songwriter/guitarist Bethany Cosentino and multi-instrumentalist Bobb Bruno – immediately caught the attention of alt-rock fans everywhere, thanks in large part to Cosentino’s breathy, ‘60s-girl group style of singing and her personal, insinuating lyrics.
The group, now touring in support of Green Day, is looking to release an EP this year as a follow-up to last year’s well-received album The Only Place (Mexican Summer). And even though Cosentino already has a career as a child actress and experimental pop band Pocahaunted behind her, she’s still, at 26, at the beginning of what’s shaping up to be an impressively long and influential career.
“My dad is a musician, so I was always around music,” she notes. “I started performing when I was really young, and I never stopped.”
By her early teens, Cosentino was already experimenting with composing her own material. “As soon as I started writing, I was like, ‘Oh wow, this is really cool’,” she recalls. “I guess it was just another way for me to be creative and expressive, and it was an outlet for me to get things off my chest. I was heavy into journaling when I was younger, but I don’t really do it anymore. I guess, in a way, songwriting is like my way of journaling.”
A few years later she was introduced to Bruno – “He was just this guy in the L.A. music scene who knew everyone and was at all the same shows as me” – and, after playing together in Pocahaunted, they decided to continue with a new project: Best Coast. “I knew he was the right person to start Best Coast,” she says, “and throughout the years we have just become much closer. “We’ve kind of started to become the same person in weird ways,” she adds, laughing. “We can read each other’s minds!”
That point is underscored by how they go about writing and recording. “I just write when an idea comes to me,” she explains, “but the songs are not complete until Bobb plays his parts on them. I don’t typically hear what Bobb is going to play until we are physically in the studio. We have a very strange way of working, but it works really well for us, so we’ve never had any desire to change it.”
And for the growing legion for Best Coast fans, that is cause for celebration.