(Details for the give-away are at the bottom of the post!)
Last night Drew and I headed up to the Grog Shop to catch Best Coast with Male Bonding and local CLE band, Clovers. We had seen Best Coast once before, last April at the Sco, and you could tell that the BC hype machine had been working overtime since then. The tickets for this show cost about twice and much and there were maybe twice as many people there.
This show has some good moments and bad moments. I really enjoyed Clovers’ opening set. I had seen them once or twice before at the Happy Dog & they grow on my every time. Their lo-fi surf pop sound was a great fit for Best Coast & the crowd seemed to really enjoy their performance. You can listen to some songs & see upcoming tour dates on their MySpace (Clevelanders — Clovers will be playing this weekend for Ingenuity Fest & they also have a show in October at the aforementioned Happy Dog.)
Male Bonding really surprised me. I feel like I’ve been seeing their album cover all over the place, but I never really bothered to check them out. But after last night, you can consider me a convert. Male Bonding blend elements of hardcore and pop & there’s almost nothing I like better than punk songs with infectious melodies. Their full-length, Nothing Hurts, is out now on Sub Pop. You can stream tracks from Nothing Hurts on their MySpace.
Best Coast was great — they played pretty much every single song off their debut LP, Crazy for You (out now onMexican Summer.) The band was just is spirited as they were the last time Drew and I saw them & though they fucked up a few songs, Bethany Cosentino was candid in her stage banter & used those fuck ups as a way to engage with the audience. There was sort of a dark moment where someone in the audience shouted, “Where’s Snacks?” (referring to Cosentino’s cat) — she replied, “Back in California,” and you could just tell that she did not want to have this conversation and was probably sick of people corralling her into talking about her cat all the time because it’s “quirky” or whatever. Things got ugly when the same heckler shouted, “I heard he had a medical condition,” and Cosentino replied, “Yeah, he does.” People in the audience started cracking jokes about her “sick” cat and she snapped and shouted, “It’s not fucking funny, he gets seizures!” (The audience responded to this with a chorus of “My ______ (mom, brother, dog, etc.) gets seizures!” and “Epilepsy! EPILEPSY!!!”)
Over the last few months, as Best Coast has become increasingly more popular/visible and this narrative of Bethany “cat lover” Cosentino has continued to grow, I’ve heard a lot of criticism about Cosentino’s lyrics and the way she’s focused both her songs and her public persona around cats, weed, and her boyfriend. Everyone says that it’s naive or tame or cloying or whatever, but last night reminded me of just how risky it is to sincerely be who you are in a public forum. So you’re not afraid to tell the whole world that you love your cat, Snacks? Great, people who don’t know you will get drunk and make fun of you because your cat gets seizures.
The give-away is closed! Congrats to Miranda! So, as a give-away, I have a souvenir from last night: It’s a Best Coast button, 2″ in diameter featuring the bear from the California state flag. If you want one, just leave a comment here with the title of your favorite Best Coast song. (I understand that OpenID hasn’t been working for everyone, unfortunately because of the volume of spam comments I sometimes get, I do have to have them moderated. If you’re unable to post here, feel free to post elsewhere (on your own blog, tumblr, twitter, wherever) — just e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org with a link to your post.)) As always if you post a link to SP elsewhere, you’ll get an extra number when I run the random number generator. I’ll leave comments open until midnight on Sunday! This is open to everyone, not just US residents.