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Best Coast accuses US newspaper of sexism over live review

"Sexism is alive and well. This makes my blood boil."

Aaron Farley/NME
Photo: Aaron Farley/NME

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Best Coast has hit out at American publication 'The San Francisco Foghorn', accusing the publication of sexism in their review of her recent show at the city's Fillmore venue.

The review's comments are aimed at front woman Bethany Cosentino, though it's not clear which member of the duo wrote the post on the band's Facebook.

"Sexism is alive and well people!", the post says. "This literally makes my blood boil. If you aren't happy with my show that's perfectly fine, but leave my looks and outfit out of it"

The review comments on Cosentino's style and looks, despite saying a couple of lines earlier that "music should never be a fashion show":

"I need to describe the outfit bandleader Bethany Cosentino was wearing," it states. "She looked sexier and badder than any rock star I've seen in years. Sporting a short latex skirt, a sheer mesh top, and a pair of suede heels, and armed with a drink and a blood red Fender Jaguar, she took the stage to applause that might have weakened the floorboards. Women gasped, men swooned, the claps went on and on and on."

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The Foghorn's editorial team has responded to the complaints as follow:

"We at the Foghorn would like to speak to those who took offense to the Best Coast concert review recently published in print and on our website. Best Coast and their many fans are entitled to their reactions. We are glad to see that they read the piece, and that they felt comfortable sharing their opinions about it. Journalism is not a one-way street, and the Foghorn appreciates hearing any feedback or difference of opinion that any of our readers may have."

"That said, we are not sorry for publishing it. The review was simply a representation of what our critic felt was important to the audience that attended the show. It is unfortunate that it was misunderstood as an act of sexism."

"As Mr. Garcia said in his review, music should never be a fashion show. He certainly did not attend the concert looking for one. He went hoping to hear good music, and as he clearly stated in the article, that is what he heard."

"What he did not like was the idea that a popular band — a band that can pull crowds to a historic San Francisco venue like The Fillmore on a Wednesday night — did not seem to be able to form a connection between themselves and the crowd. After seeing Cosentino’s immaculate outfit and hearing her wonderful music, it seemed a shame that the band was unable to give their fans what they deserved: some interest and personal investment in a show they had all paid to see."

"Several readers have criticized Mr. Garcia’s comment about how Cosentino did not smile throughout the show. This was compared to asking a woman on the street to smile, something that, we agree, is horribly sexist. It is important to keep in mind that Bethany Cosentino, at least while on stage, is not a woman on the street. She is a rock star, one with fans who buy her albums and journalists who will be critiquing her performances, of which appearance and presentation are always a factor."

"After further review, we realized that smiling is simply not apart of a typical performance put on by the band, thus the absence of a smile should have no affect on the quality of the band’s perceived performance. However, it should be expected that a paying audience member can anticipate some form of connection from the artists–which Best Coast did not provide at that particular show."

Best Coast released their third album 'California Nights' in May, peaking just outside the top 50 of the US album charts.

The band are currently touring the album, and play the following UK/ Ireland dates over the coming few weeks:

Electric Brixton, London (October 29)
The Kazimier, Liverpool (30)
Academy, Dublin (31)


View the post and Best Coast's comments below:

Sexism is alive and well people!!!!! This literally makes my blood boil. If you aren't happy with my show that's...

Posted by Best Coast on Friday, 2 October 2015
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