Album Review: Best Coast – Fade Away (EP)

Score: 7/10

 

Cosentino and Bruno go back to 2010 and just turn up the amps a little.

Published by JB on December 7, 2013
Release date: October 22, 2013
 

They call this a mini-album.  I call it an EP.  The head scratcher here is why Best Coast chose to not just add two more tracks and call it an ALBUM.   Either way, the comparisons to Fade Away‘s two predecessors is the first prerequisite.   For me this album is nothing like the outstanding guitar-pop masterpiece they released in May of 2012.  That album (Only Place) was filled with jangly hooks and melodies and featured Best_Coast_2013July31-38a sequence of tracks in the middle of the album that will carry Best Coast forward for another half decade.   The Only Place had both a bigger pop sound and a far more studio-savvy hi-fi recording than their ultra lo-fi debut album Crazy For You.   Where Crazy For You featured what is still the best Best Coast track in their catalog (the sublime “Our Deal”), The Only Place was a dramatic leap forward that alienated only a tiny handful of critics who preferred the lo-fi vibe of their debut.  If you want lo-fi, go play The Only Place on a transistor radio.

Fade Away is a louder version of the lo-fi feel from 2010, and slightly more catchy – but nowhere in the category of The Only Place.  It’s more guitar oriented than both of its predecessors but with a lot of the same reverb studio vocals of their debut album.   Nearly every track is heavy with Bruno’s guitar work yet still has the girl-next-door melodies and vocals from Cosentino.   The ace in the hole for Best Coast continues to be Cosentino’s singing.  From a girl that has a google-search record of partying like a real rock star her vocals are typically outstanding, carrying each track without wearing thin on the microphone.  That coupled with the wonderful Bruno has setup Best Coast for more modestly-anticipated releases in the future.   But at some point in the near future this style will begin to show wear and tear on its tires.  Best Coast has about one more album of songs like this in their holster, and then the obvious question will become, “Can they do anything else other than this?”.   We’ll see.

–TWTHS

See our review of Best Coast – live in Minneapolis, 2013

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