On Thursday Oct. 5, Best Coast performed at College Street Music Hall in New Haven, putting on an energetic show full of their signature positive vibes and pristine live sound.
The California-based rock duo was formed in 2009 and have been releasing their unique surf pop music ever since. Best Coast is made up of songwriter, guitarist and vocalist Bethany Cosentino and guitarist and multi-instrumentalist Bobb Bruno.
Best Coast is currently touring with Paramore but have been playing their own shows at smaller, more intimate venues on their days off from the main tour. The intimacy of the College Street Music Hall venue automatically created a comfortable familiarity between the band and the audience. While Cosentino and Bruno were the stars of the show, there were three additional touring members on stage: Brady Miller on drums, Brett Mielke on bass and backing vocals and Joe Bautista on guitar and keyboards.
Best Coast came on in a burst of energy that was playful and exciting. Cosentino’s vocals were impressive, sounding similar to the record without losing the charm of live performance. Both Cosentino and Bruno were very active on stage, dancing and interacting with each other.
Perhaps one of the most unique aspects of the show was the band’s close and constant interaction with the audience. After playing “California Nights,” a riff on a love ballad, Cosentino awarded a flower as a prize to a slow-dancing couple. A few songs later, she gave a flower to a girl who sang along to all the lyrics. A few other members of the audience received flowers for various reasons as well.
Cosentino’s honesty with the audience was also refreshing and unique. Before singing the song “Boyfriend,” one of the band’s first big hits, Cosentino admitted she now hates the song, but still loved to sing it because she loved watching the audience get excited about it.
The positivity associated with Best Coast’s music was also very present at the concert. Before singing the song “Jealousy,” Cosentino explained the backstory behind the piece. She spoke of the human tendency to judge others without getting to know them and the danger of doing this, especially in today’s political climate.
Best Coast began gaining popularity after the release of their first full album, “Crazy For You,” which features some of their best-known songs such as “When I’m With You” and “Boyfriend.” The duo continued the momentum with the release of their sophomore album “The Only Place” in 2012. They experienced a break-out moment on the indie scene with the release of “California Nights,” their third studio album, in 2015. “California Nights” is by far the band’s most polished album and deals with their signature themes of love, teenage angst and California.
Frankie Cosmos opened for Best Coast, setting up a relaxed and intimate atmosphere for the concert that continued in Best Coast’s set.
Overall, Best Coast did not disappoint live. As Greta Schmitz, another concertgoer from UConn, said, “Best Coast’s live show was everything their music exudes: fun and freedom.” Cosentino and Bruno’s exciting energy and positive message were both fun and touching. Based on both their musical talent and lively performances, Best Coast is an indie band that is here to stay.
Lucie Turkel is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.