By now any self-respecting fan of female-led indie-noise rock has heard, (and hopefully enjoyed) Speedy Ortizâ€™s previous releases, most recently last yearâ€™s Real Hair EP. Next up is the bandâ€™s sophomore full-length release, Foil Deer. On the first single â€śRaising the Skateâ€ť, singer, songwriter and guitarist Sadie Dupuis plugs in and lets her vocals ride on a wave of jagged guitar noise in her soft vs. loud style, producing some sweet results. Check it out below and jump on the limited gold vinyl if you feel the urge.
Special limited LP on gold vinyl comes with sticker. All vinyl comes with band-designed chapbook and digital download card in gatefold jacket.
Speedy Ortiz said they would get the flowers themselves. What a lark! What a plunge!
When considering Massachusettsâ€™ Speedy Ortiz, that line from Virginia Woolf comes to mind. Not only for the obvious echoes to DIY, a form and function that's characterized the band's nascency, but in the proto-feminist undertones driving much of their sophomore album, Foil Deer. â€śI'm not bossy, I'm the boss,â€ť Sadie Dupuis sings on â€śRaising the Skate,â€ť invoking in spirit one half of the Carter-Knowles clan and echoing the other's wordplay. And wordplay makes sense, considering Dupuisâ€”the bandâ€™s songwriter, guitarist, and frontwomanâ€”spent the band's first few years teaching writing at UMass Amherst. She's drawn to the dense complexity of Pynchon, the dreamlike geometry of BolaĂ±o, the confounded yearning of Plathâ€”all attributes you could easily apply to the band's 2013 debut Major Arcana, which fans and press alike have invested with a sense of purpose and merit uncommon in contemporary guitar rock.
The group, including Mike Falcone on drums, Darl Ferm on bass, and new addition Devin McKnight of Grass is Green on guitar, have spent the last year on an almost endless cross-continental touring jag, tagging along with the likes of The Breeders, Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks, and Thurston Moore. That shift into full-time musicianship brought with it an attendant reordering of priorities when it came to songwriting, and the band membersâ€™ lives in general. They would get the damn flowers themselves.
Dupuis wrote much of Foil Deer at her motherâ€™s home in the Connecticut woods, where the songwriter imposed a self-regulated exile and physical cleansing of sorts, finding that many of the songs came to her while running or swimming alone. â€śI gave up wasting mental energy on people who didn't have my back,â€ť she says. â€śListening to our old records, I get the sense I was putting myself in horrible situations just to write sad songs. This music isn't coming from a dark place, and without slipping into self-empowerment jargon, it feels stronger.â€ť Many of the songs deal with a similar sense of starting over, editing out the unnecessary drama. â€śBoys be sensitive and girls be, be aggressive,â€ť she sings on â€śMister Difficult.â€ť
And while their debut album was recorded on the fly, Speedy Ortiz spent almost a month in the studio on Foil Deer. Falconeâ€™s drums are taut, mechanistic; Fermâ€™s bass ranges from the aggressive rattle of an AmRep classic to smoother, hip-hop inspired lines. McKnight, meanwhile, lends spacier, textural riffs to complement Dupuisâ€™ wiry, melody-driven guitar style. â€śThe demos for our songs have always had tons of small details and production experimentation, but we never had any money to pay for more than a couple days in the studio, so the songs came out very live-sounding and guitar heavy,â€ť Dupuis says. It was recorded and mixed at Brooklynâ€™s Rare Book Room with Nicolas Vernhes (Silver Jews, Enon, Deerhunter), with the record mastered by Emily Lazar (Sia, Haim, Beauty Pill), lending a more polished sound and a pop sensibility that will stand out to existing fans and new converts alike. For all the lyrical complexity and guitar-based excursions Speedy Ortiz have built their reputation on to this point, Foil Deer has a sense of light-footed fun. What's the point of doing things yourself if you're not going to enjoy the trip?
1. Good Neck
2. Raising the Skate
3. The Graduates
4. Dot X
7. Swell Content
9. My Dead Girl
11. Mister Difficult
12. Dvrk Wvrld
- Maybe Buy
- Not My Style
- Too Expensive