Review: Best Coast and Bully at First Avenue – Minneapolis, MN – June 8, 2015

Published by JB on June 9, 2015

Review:  Best Coast and Bully at First Avenue – Minneapolis, MN – June 8, 2015

No longer part of the new indie darling group, Best Coast has been clubbing it, with a couple hundred shows and a few thousand miles now under their jangly belt.   Gone are the days of Drew Barrymore-directed videos and the lo-fi sound that carried them through their honeymoon period of their debut album (Crazy For You) back in 2010.  Best Coast is back and louder than ever as a rollicking 5-piece touring band, shedding much of the pop glory found on their 2nd album, The Only Place and replacing it with more rock and roll than ever before.   The California-style sun-baked melodies take a backseat behind the triple guitar threat onstage.

While oldies (‘Boyfriend’) elicit the biggest crowd responses, the Best Coast duo of Bobb Bruno and Bethany Cosentino have found their anthem for now and the years ahead.  ‘California Nights’, the lead single, title track and most endearing mid-tempo rocker from their new album is the evening’s musical highlight.   It’s a song that lyrically captures the essence of the band more than any other since Barrymore’s ‘Our Deal’ direction lit up MTV five years ago.   ‘Night’s is the centerpiece of a show that is carried by Cosentino’s Jenny Lewis-style voice.  Her genuine modesty at the outpouring of support from the boisterous Minneapolis crowd was evident between most of the songs.

1200 fans filled the venue at 90% (which common sense would say is 100% when you’re there) and watched a singularly focused Bruno and the rather enigmatic Cosentino rage through a long collection of 3-minute rockers.   Cosentino stopped at one point to let the crowd know what it meant to her for them to sing her emotionally driven lyrics back to her.   It was an 80 minute love fest, clocking in at just the right amount.   While perhaps never being able to revive the pop song glory of The Only Place, Best Coast is still interesting enough to believe there’s ample room for more musical growth and something new a couple years from now.


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