Best Coast, “California Nights”
It’s goodbye low budget, hello high society on Best Coast’s third full-length California Nights. Don’t call it a graduation, but the Los Angeles duo of singer-songwriter Bethany Cosentino and guitarist Bobb Bruno have moved from indie label Mexican Summer to an offshoot of major label Capitol Records—and it shows. The six-year-old band eschews its previously petite arrangements in favor of an ambitious, larger sound that is at equal turns supremely infectious and overwhelming. With huge instrumentations and production value, this is Best Coast blown up to the nth degree. But unfortunately, the results are nothing new—even though they seem to be headed in the right direction after the band’s lackluster sophomore LP, 2012’s The Only Place. While the duo’s core themes seem to be intact, it’s hard not to yearn for the old Best Coast, the one content to get high and talk about life under the sun. Not the one grasping for major pop hits. Or straws.