awkwardsound - Speedy Ortiz

As a discrete New Englander, AS can attest to you that it doesn’t take long for summer to flip Western Massachusetts the bird once September rolls around. It forces its musically-inclined residents to stuff away all their feel-good ambient pop, peppy punk and other bright-hued listens that made up their sunshine soundtracks to find solace bundling their ears inside cozier corners as the scenery around them exhales one last burst of color before it begins to cool and decay. It’s a bittersweet time for the most part, with kids exchanging emo mixtapes, quenching seasonable brews, mustering up schoolboy crushes with eventual disastrous consequences and getting stoked for the two or three weeks between late September and October where they can layer up without having to worry about a winter coat cramping their style, all before it ultimately swan-dives into a fit of frigid air despair. Speedy Ortiz are the life preserver keeping these type of people’s hopes afloat during the cold climate transition. Currently based out of Northampton, MA, the Love and Rockets character-saluting project began taking shape in 2011 inside the home of defacto leader and guitarist Sadie Dupuis, but has since transitioned into a buddy quartet featuring her friends Mike Falcone on drums, Dan Ferm on bass and guitarist Matt Robidoux. Angular, calculated yet still messy, Speedy Ortiz — like their area BUZZSoundmates California X — are well-learned disciples of WMass’ ’90s indie rock lineage who blend it with a bit of smart hardcore. Yet, Dupuis’ ever-so-slight rasp inflicted on a sharp tongue of dark wit places her and the boys somewhere on an alternate universe where Courtney Love never fronted riot grrrl anthems, fell in love with failed geeky romances and wrote an angrier version of Rainer Maria’s catalog instead. It’s spunky warmth through lyrical connect you can hear in their growing discography, beginning with a collection of early demos, a single and this year’s ode to athletic break-ups, Sports EP. Fittingly enough, Speedy Ortiz will head out to NYC in the midst of autumn to take part in October’s CMJ circus, where the equally bitter and sweet indie punk darlings should have no problem giving listeners some new hope for the future.