Who: Wavves and Best Coast
Where: Bluebird Theater
When: Saturday, February 27
Take Aways: A grown-up Best Coast swims into harder rock while Wavves does what they do best — start heart-filled riots with their fast-paced musical journey.
“Wake up, you know I feel ok / Go to sleep, it’s just another day,” lead singer of Best Coast Bethany Cosentino crooned into the microphone on Saturday, February 27th at the Bluebird. But it wasn’t just another day for those crowded into the cramped and sweaty theater — the two super indie bands, Best Coast and Wavves, were finally performing a two-night series together.
When Wavves took the stage after Best Coast, the crowd drifted from subtle rock vibes to a full-on mosh pit. Standing in the balcony, I lost count of how many crowd surfers were pushed from the stage by the crew, making sure lead singer Nathan Williams stayed away from flailing limbs and gangly legs. Yet Best Coast had pushed into an edgier feel from past albums. While they opened with pop hits like “Feeling OK” and “Crazy For You,” they brought the crowd into metal guitar sessions as the set progressed, as if prepping us for Wavves.
The quick and lilting sounds that I am used to hearing from this band contrasted with the thrashes of guitars and hammering of drums. You could hear the punk ties that slowly pulsed through this beach loving band in Bethany’s voice — her LA voice rang pure, reminding us that every band needs to transition and change from their first singles. They went on to perform a cascade of all favorites along with songs from their most recent release, California Nights.
I’m sure Coloradan’s admire Bethany’s adoration for weed and all her songs that give ode to one of her favorite pastime activities. However, just like the transition of her music, this album features a darker side of this lovable plant, as if mirroring the melancholic undertones, “But I try to stay alive / I never wanna get so high / That I can’t come back down to real life,” Bethany sings, with a backdrop of synth and electric guitar highlighting her moody words.
Ending with “Boyfriend,” Bethany and her band quickly popped off the stage while fans were left wanting more beer and angsty lyrics — and that wish sure did get fulfilled.
Nathan and his band grabbed the stage and rioted off into heavy guitar jams, sliding synth reels, and pounding drums. It was hard to hear his voice from far upstairs, cornered away from the raucous jumping down below. Whereas Best Coast had distinct changes of musical direction, it seemed as if Wavves was just rolling one song into the other to create an ocean of sounds.
“Sorry, if I woke you up this morning / It was early / The sun was coming up and I’ve been drinking, too much /
Drinking too much,” Nathan sardonically sang the single, “Way Too Much” into the microphone. Having just released the album V in 2015, it was expected they would play the entire roll call of new songs.
They interacted with the crowd the entire night — even apologizing for the “15 to 20 kids that had already gotten kicked out,” Nathan joked, “But at least you’re turning up.”
No wiser words had been said all night.