Best Coast did surf pop with “Crazy For You” and brought out the Fleetwood Mac sound with “The Only Place.”
Right now, the band’s Bethany Cosentino and Bobb Bruno are preparing to release an EP, “Fade Away,” that Cosentino told us is somewhere in between — “like the baby of ‘Crazy For You’ and ‘The Only Place,’ ” she said.
I talked to Cosentino earlier this week about all that’s going on with the band, particularly the new EP and how she’s grown into making the kind of music she wants to make.
Kevin Coffey: You’re doing a short tour on the way to Riot Fest. What can fans expect on this run of shows?
Bethany Cosentino: We have a ton of fun on tour, so we try to make our shows just as fun. We are playing a lot of new songs from the EP, so fans can expect to hear some new material, which is cool because we haven’t played any new stuff since “The Only Place” came out.
KC: What can you tell me about “Fade Away?” Is it in a similar vein to “The Only Place?”
BC: Production wise it’s a bit dirtier sounding that “The Only Place.” We used a lot more distortion and reverb than the last record, but it’s not as intense as it was on “Crazy For You.” The songwriting is a bit different as well, seeing as my songwriting changes with basically each song I write. There is a heavy, moody jam called “Fade Away,” which is a lot different than any other Best Coast song I’ve written and we’ve recorded. And then there are some typical poppy Best Coast-sounding songs like a song called “I Wanna Know.” I was listening to a lot of Mazzy Star and My Bloody Valentine at the time of recording the EP, so I wanted to make it a bit hazier sounding.
KC: Why do a seven song “mini-album” so soon? Did you just have a lot of extra material?
BC: We wanted to get back in the studio and record something, but we weren’t quite ready to do a third album. We originally recorded 5 songs for the EP, but since we had released 2 songs for Record Store Day that were recorded by the same producer, and had the same kind of vibe, we decided to include those as well. The Record Store Day songs came out on as vinyl-only and weren’t really available to the general public to purchase, so it’s nice that they’ll be on this EP and people can now own them as opposed to only being able to stream them or own them only on the Record Store Day 7″.
KC: Have you worked on a full fullowup to “The Only Place?”
BC: I’ve been writing some material for a new album, and we actually begin recording our third full length in mid-November. I’m really excited to make a new record. I love being in the studio, it’s so much fun for me, and Bobb loves it as well so it’s a really good place for us to be. We are hoping to do something different than our other two albums, but nothing insanely different.
KC: Your music has grown up a little bit since “Crazy For You.” Is that a reflection of changing tastes or something else?
BC: I think it’s just a reflection in my own growth. I was 22 when the band started. I’m 26, almost 27, now, so I’ve grown up a lot and I’ve experienced a lot of changes. I feel like since my songwriting is so personal and specific to who I am as a person, it changes with me.
KC: You said recently that your music career happened very organically. When you started making music was it your intention to sort of make it big, so to speak, or was it simpler than that?
BC: I mean, I’ve been making music my whole life, so I always knew this was something I would end up doing, but I didn’t necessarily expect to be on this big of a scale. When Best Coast first started, I never imagined we would one day be doing world tours on buses and playing sold out venues and doing shit like opening for Green Day and stuff. I never had a real “plan.” I was just making music and going with the flow. I’m still like that though. I don’t really expect anything, ever. I just wish and hope that I can keep playing music for the rest of my life, even if it’s not as Best Coast, because it’s something I’m fully comfortable and confident doing, and it’s the best job I’ve ever had.
KC: Obviously, your life has changed in the years since. What’s the biggest thing that’s different for you between then and now?
BC: I guess the biggest difference would be the fact that people know who I am now, and people recognize me in places I never would have expected them to years ago. I was in the airport the other day and this guy came up to me and started telling me how much he loved my band and how awesome it was to meet me, and I just thought like, “Wow, what a trip.” If 4 years ago you had told me that would be happening to me I would never have believed you. My life has changed a lot, but I’m still the same person I was before fame. I will never allow fame or fortune or any of those things to go to my head. I’ve always been a humble person, and I always will be.
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