Speedy Ortiz talk favourite records, Festivus, and the perils of working with muppets after a manic 2015
Fingers crossed for another Hannibal Buress collab next year…
It’s been a whirlwind 2015 for Speedy Ortiz. Back in April the band released ‘Foil Deer,’ by way of a aluminum-themed comic book announcement, and we duly awarded it a full-whack five star rating in our review. Since then, they’ve enlisted complete comedy legend Hannibal Buress (best known for starring as Lincoln in Broad City) as a drummer at a SXSW show, worked with a entourage of Muppets on a David Lynch inspired video, and attempted to scale the Eiffel Tower.
Besides all of that, Speedy Ortiz have been doing some very cool work to empower marginalised people across music. On tour during 2015 they started up a hotline for gig-goers to phone if they felt unsafe at shows. They’re also just about to wrap up an all-ages tour to raise funds for the Girls Rock Camp Foundation - a charity which puts on educational camping trip for girls who want to learn about making music - too.
With a manic 12 months to take stock of, we caught up with Speedy Ortiz about everything from their favourite David Lynch creations, to the possible return of Hannibal Buress.
What has been your ‘Most Iconic Speedy Ortiz Moment’ of 2015?
Sadie: We got to tour to Mexico City for a festival, and I spent a few hours at the Frida Kahlo museum, Casa Azul. It’s a beautiful house in which she spent her whole life, filled with her art and materials and clothing. Does it get more iconic than Frida Kahlo?! Nah.
Devin: Jeff Tweedy’s backstage taco truck after we opened for Wilco on tour at an amphitheater in Portland. And the daiquiris.
Darl: The taco truck was the best one.
Mike: Can we all agree on taco truck? That was pretty cool.
Last time we spoke to Sadie, she was very ‘into’ playing the Sims. Is that still a major obsession within the band?
Sadie: I’ve taken some time off from The Sims. They kept getting stuck in corners while trying to answer the phone and it was frustrating. Also, my main Sim got jealous after her wife became too friendly with the babysitter and their marital spat was needlessly complicated to clean up. Grow up, Sims!
Is there an album from 2015 that you haven’t been able to stop listening to?
Darl: ‘Swish’. ‘Cuz it’s the greatest.
Mike: ‘Black Messiah’ [D’Angelo]. I can’t stop listening to it. But it doesn’t count because it came out last year.
Sadie: Super into the All Dogs record ‘Kicking Every Day.’ Really well crafted songs that run the emotional spectrum.’s Maryn has the coolest voice.
What is the best present you have been given by a fan this year?
Devin: A guy in France drew a portrait of us as characters from the Love and Rockets comic ‘The Death of Speedy Ortiz.’
Sadie: I met my now-friend Logan after he gave me a painting for my birthday at a festival we played last year. This year he gave me an amazing vinyl art toy that is a blue anthropomorphic sandwich with glasses named Julian. Very strong gift.
Darl: We met the Chicago artist Ghetto Art and he drew us sitting in a park in Chicago. Ghetto Art is always my answer.
Who is your favourite band you’ve managed to catch live this year?
Mike & Darl: Beak>. Beak>.
Devin: Alex G. I managed to catch them.
Sadie: Touring with Downtown Boys was amazing. Seeing The Good Life in Omaha was awesome too. Or maybe D’Angelo… or Perfume Genius… ahhh, too many good shows this year!
Do you know what you’re getting each other for Christmas?
Devin: We only believe in secular holidays.
Darl: We air our grievances for Festivus.
Sadie: I gave them all Simpsons pins last year. Maybe I’ll do that again.
Have you lost anything on tour this year?
Devin: My pink hoodie in Arizona. Pretty mad.
Sadie: Various shades of blue lipstick.
Mike: I was bummed when I lost my tambourine.
This question is inspired by your latest video for ‘My Dead Girl’ - whats your favourite David Lynch film/other thing he’s made?
Mike: Mulholland Drive.
Sadie & Devin: Twin Peaks.
Darl: Blue Velvet.
Are muppets difficult to work with, or did you find them fairly relaxed when you were making ‘My Dead Girl’?
Mike: Puppeteering was really fun.
Devin: The puppets were fairly chill.
Darl: They were all divas and got their own trailers. I was jealous.
Is Hannibal Buress going to be making a return to the ranks of Speedy Ortiz any time soon?
Sadie: The real question is, will Speedy Ortiz be making a return to the ranks of Hannibal Buress anytime soon?
Speaking of Hannibal Buress, and by extension, Broad City - is Speedy Ortiz more of an Abbi or an Ilana band, personality-wise?
Devin: Ilana. Duh.
Sadie: Hmm, maybe Bingo Bronson, the huge bunny character Abbi sees after she’s drugged up after having her wisdom teeth out. Or maybe Val, Abbi’s blackout drunk alter ego lounge singer, ‘cuz that’s sort of my job description. I definitely identify with Abbi whenever I enter a Bed Bath & Beyond.
Mike: We’re all Kelly Ripas.
Speedy Ortiz’s latest album ‘Foil Deer’ is out now.
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