From Ethan Hill ’16:
Come to Eclectic this Friday night to see Northampton indie rock band Speedy Ortiz and their grungy blend of guitars, thoughtful lyrics, and 90s sensibilities. The much buzzed-about band, featuring Wesleyan graduate Darl Ferm ’12 on bass, is coming to Wesleyan with much anticipation after an unfortunately cancelled show at Earth House last spring. Playing with Speedy Ortiz will be Burlington, VT experimental pop musician Ryan Power.
SPEEDY ORTIZ – grungy northampton indie rock
RYAN POWER – weirdo vermonter pop
NEO SORA – ambient fun
Date: Friday, Nov 8
Place: The Eclectic Society
Darl Ferm ’12, second to the right in the hat,
called his band’s new exposure a “surreal experience.”
When new bands emerge, press coverage revolves around two major aspects: the recorded music, and the live show. Nailing one will get you talked about; both, and you’re the new rising stars. Speedy Ortiz, coming out of Northampton, Mass. and featuring Darl Ferm ’12 on bass, have been hailed as funny, sharp, and explosive by blogs, magazines, and newspapers galore, gaining praise equally for their concerts and their debut full-length, Major Arcana. They are “best new music,” “best new artists,” and pretty much best new everything else you can think of.
Although most publications talk about the rock band’s witty and outspoken front woman Sadie Dupois, Speedy Ortiz’s lo-fi but finely constructed ’90s-esque sound stems just as much from the extra guitar, drums, and bass piled on top of each other. Darl Ferm ’12, a film studies major at Wesleyan, is the most recent addition to the band. He spoke to me about the recent success and popularity of Speedy Ortiz, how Wesleyan makes it difficult to be in a band, and his own personal influences and musical contributions. Oh, and Speedy Ortiz wants to play a show at Eclectic this fall, so somebody should make that happen.
Andrew Zingg ’13 writes:
Oh u liek rawk’n’roll? Last day of classes, I got some bands for you!
Featuring Wes alum Dan Ferm ’12, this Northampton band is certifiably
blowin’ up. Poopfork recently big up’d not one, but two tracks off
their new 7″ and they also got nifty articles written about them in
Spin and on MTV.com. Next stop TRL, amirite? I’m not gonna say they
sound like Dinosaur Jr or the Breeders because, contrary to popular
belief, they’re not like totally in love with 90s. If having one bro
from Wesleyan on bass counts, then they are our school’s Next Big
Thing. Wisen up! Wesleying coverage here.
Speedy Ortiz is the project of long-time Sound Coop member Dan Ferm ’12 and a bunch of other friends from Northampton, MA. Appropriately, the band sounds a whole lot like fellow western Massachusetts noise-makers Dinosaur Jr. and Sebadoh, plus others from the early ’90s indie/lo-fi cloth—earnest melodies swamped in dense, fuzzy overdrive, with melodic vocal lines and inventive guitar tuning. Don’t believe me? Listen to “Taylor Swift,” which sounds not very much like its namesake at all:
Speedy Ortiz plans to release a 10″ EP on vinyl, CD, and hopefully tape at the end of the month, so start dusting your cassette players. The band has been spotted performing in various houses on campus, and hopefully more before graduation. The band is also planning to tour cross-country this summer, so members have set up one of them fancy Kickstarter thingamajigs to raise $4,000 to bring noise to your freaking hometown:
VANS ACROSS AMERICA! Speedy Ortiz wants to bring our rock show to a city near you this summer, and we can’t do that without a van! And hopefully a van with decent gas mileage since gas just might cost more than ever this year. But if we can bring the rock out on the road to you, it will be totally worth it!
A WesBand you haven’t heard (of)? At least, I haven’t. In support of musical diversification at Wes, Daniel Ferm ’12 writes in:
We’re Speedy Ortiz. We’re from Northampton and Connecticut. I, Daniel Ferm, am the only one in the band from Wesleyan. We play lots of shows in New England and New York, and we played a show here in March in a house. We just got signed by Exploding in Sound Records. We are Speedy. Take a listen to our latest single.