Kristin Recommends: “Storms” by Best Coast

“Storms” is possibly my favorite Fleetwood Mac song. Maybe even my favorite Stevie Nicks song. It’s hard to pick a favorite — she’s an actual goddess.

Opening with what sounds like a gust of wind, Best Coast brings their stripped-down style to this classic song. The Los Angeles duo — who have cited Fleetwood Mac as an influence — trade in the elegance of finger strumming for a surfy-er vibe as perfect backdrop to Bethany Cosentino’s voice.

And like any musicians worth their salt, they have come to Stevie’s classic melody with their own sense of movement, dipping and dodging to create a new narrative with just the pitch of Bethany’s harmonies. The signature sunniness in her voice is such a contrast to Stevie’s dark and breathy style—this ability to make such a deeply melancholy song feel almost uplifting is almost some sort of witchcraft.

But there is still that feeling of urgency. As the song ends, Bethany refuses to swallow it. The outro swells, echoing “we were frail” — an almost throw-away line easily missed in the original — as a refrain and an invocation. And while Stevie asks, in 1979, “Is there anything left to say?” Bethany answers with this simple and profound ending — an open ending that perhaps was always there for us to hold.

(Song recommendation by E. Kristin Anderson)

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