It feels like a long three-and-a-half years since I first witnessed Coastal Cities play a dingy upstairs room in a shabby pub in High Wycombe, their hometown, to a bewildered group of metal-heads and skinny emo-teens, but it’s been quite a journey since then. In that time, the band have been endorsed by their musical heroes, The Drums, played one of Paris’ most prestigious live music venues, La Fleche d’Or, and have starred in a Burberry campaign. They’ve also released a string of well-received EPs and singles, culminating in the release of Summer Reign in November 2013.
With a penchant for nostalgia and an ear for delightful pop hooks in equal measure, Coastal Cities are certainly a band on the rise. Debut release Thinktank earned the group praise from far and wide, and deservedly so - few acts have produced such a captivating pop song in recent memory; their combination of sharp guitar lines, shimmering synths and wistful vocals have proven transfixing. Whilst Coastal Cities have continued the trend, later releases Relief and Entropic embody a refined slickness that comes only with experience. The 80s references ring abound, but it’s an appreciation of contemporary pop and alternative music which nudges them ahead of the revivalists. Latest single, Summer Reign, a case-in-point.