March 26, 2012

Song Review: Best Coast's "The Only Place"

"Why would you live anywhere else?," Best Coast frontwoman Bethany Cosentino perches on the title track off the noise pop group's sophomore LP, and with that, we're right back in the middle of Southern California's sunshine-riddled highways and byways that warmly saturated stereos during the band's 2010 debut Crazy for You. This time around however, Cosentino steps away from the sugary fuzz brought forth from electric pedals and opts for sweet-sounding, simple acoustic guitar textures in a decidedly country turn that antithesizes the suburban slacker's immature punk image of yesteryear. Speaking recently with Pitchfork about making the Jon Brion-produced The Only Place, Cosentino -- now a well-traveled, more confident 25-year-old -- said she's done a lot of growing up since Best Coast's overnight success made them a hipster household name and that the new LP represents her need "to figure out a way to get people to stop thinking of me as the 'stoner, cat loving' girl.'" It certainly doesn't sound like Bethany is pulling the brat card on the album's first preview, as her genuine longing for homelier surroundings attests to a more meaningful disposition to listeners than juvenile feline love. Short and simple, but it speaks volumes about where the sour-voiced songwriter is at this stage in her life.

Best Coast - "The Only Place"

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