Wavves, Best Coast @ Webster Hall 2/2/2011

(Photo courtesy of Meghan Cederberg)

Best Groundhog’s Day ever!  (Except for that year I got stuck in a time repeat and learned how to be a better person, of course.)  Best Coast and Wavves played Webster Hall, with No Joy opening.  Here are my thoughts…

No Joy is not my kind of music.  There’s a reason I don’t like Sonic Youth, and No Joy reminded me of it for 40 minutes.  My friend Meghan even made a pun on their name vs. the enjoyment their show provides, and I bet you can figure it out.  Honestly though, I can’t even judge their music because I have no background In the genre.  They might have been the best noise band ever, but could you tell?  The crowd seemed to think this too, and the never ending loops of feedback did not make any hipsters shake a leg.  The applause seemed more courteous than anything else.

Next up was Wavves, who I was totally sure would headline; until they walked out, that is.  Simply put, they rocked it.  They set themselves up as druggie slackers playing fast reverb-filled surf punk, and that’s exactly what they deliver onstage.  The X-Files theme, beach ball bonanza, and alien dolls didn’t hurt either.  The crowd loved it, the band had fun, and leader Nathan Williams was admittedly drunk, but incredibly confident and on point.  I did start to notice that a lot of Wavves songs do exactly the same thing, but for some reason it doesn’t get tiresome to listen to.  Maybe that’s just me, though.  All in all, the band played a kajillion tunes that included all the best ones from their last two albums.  They ended with “Post Acid,” played it in fast forward, and nobody cared because it was awesome.

Best Coast wasn’t something I was particularly looking forward to, and I’m glad because I would have been disappointed.   I really liked their album, but their show did not live up to it.  I read a bit about this in other reviews, and the general consensus is that the band’s sound is difficult to recreate live.  That was completely true, but leader Bethany Cosentino was noticeably off for the beginning of the set, even having to restart a song as well.  She got by on her cute remarks and overall presence, but that doesn’t make up for poor showmanship.

We ended up leaving about five songs in, because it was getting late and the show was not really worth staying for.  If Wavves had closed, things would have been quite different.  I’m sure Best Coast will get better in time, but for now they need to work on their game.  They sound more like a decent opener than a Webster Hall headliner.  Thank gosh Wavves was there to make the evening a memorable one, or else all might have been lost…

Wavves – Post Acid

Best Coast – Boyfriend

And here are some more pics!

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