Updated: Apr 8, 2020
Best Coast front woman Bethany Consentino started writing songs in 2009, locked in a bedroom at her mom’s house in Burbank, California. A college drop-out, she moved back home without ideas about life, and what her life was about to become. “Every day I would write a song or two about the angst, confusion, anxiety, and existential dread I felt as an early twenty-something college drop-out. I would sit in that little room, on a mattress on the floor and have what felt to me like a therapy session with my guitar and a notepad. I started sending these songs to my friend Bobb Bruno, who I’d known since I was seventeen, and he started sprinkling his parts on top.”
An admitted “party girl,” the beginning of Best Coast’s rise through the maze of becoming a band signed to a record deal, world tours, playing on late night television, and making music videos with Drew Barrymore, was a time when Cosentino felt stuck in a dark place. With every part of her life on public display, she had questions about her romantic relationships, her cat, alcohol and drug usage, and why she repeated those self-destructive actions daily. “We played Lollapalooza in 2011 and I literally started the set by flipping someone off in the crowd and saying, ‘F**k you, we’re Best Coast.’ I didn’t do that because I was some badass Joan Jett rock star. I did that because I was deeply miserable and deeply insecure about what you thought of me so I wanted you to see me as someone who didn’t give a f**k.”
Following the album cycle for 2015’s California Nights, she felt creatively paralyzed. She could not write music for the first time in her life. With nothing to say, she retreated to her home and didn’t leave the house, watching every season of Vanderpump Rules and sat alone on her couch drinking wine. So much was happening inside her psyche that she felt miserable, as if nothing would ever change.
Locking herself in her closet, she forced herself the write, with “Everything Has Changed” being first song she’d written in years. That song was a vision of a life she wished was hers, where things were not so foggy, where she no longer drank. That song proved to be prophetic because it described the life she would soon live. On November 12, 2017 she made the decision to get sober, changing her future from failure to a sober, successful singer-songwriter.
Best Coast’s new album, Always Tomorrow, tells a story about the struggles we face in life for which there is no blueprint, about leaving the darkness behind reaching out for the light, understanding that nothing is perfect, and attempting to fix broken patterns while learning to get out of your own way. In her own words, ”This album is the story of getting a second chance.”
Photo by Kevin Haynes