Twerp Verse

Speedy Ortiz - Twerp Verse
Critic Score
Based on 23 reviews
2018 Ratings: #348 / 735
User Score
Based on 75 ratings
2018 Ratings: #509
April 27, 2018 / Release Date
LP / Format
Carpark / Label
Indie Rock / Genres
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This is Speedy Ortiz at their most refined and most accessible.


While the band attempt to make sense of a turbulent modern world, they’re just feeling more playful than ever.

The Independent

Their latest effort is a much-welcomed return to form.

Northern Transmissions

A grimy pop energy sets things off in “Buck Me Off” as Dupuis et al. let their loose grooves give them an unpredictable charm.

Though the majority of ‘Twerp Verse’ was written after Sad13’s solo debut ‘Slugger’, it’s easy to spot the creative similarities between the two, and the result is a sharpening of Speedy Ortiz’s axe to grind. Succinct, wry, and in tune with its context, there’s plenty to unpick, here.

It's easily the band's most direct album, but rather than dumbing things down, they've removed anything that might get in the way of their messages.


Speedy Ortiz’ most pertinent, pointed and playful album to date.


It’s their strongest album to date, and while Speedy Ortiz are probably never going to make that giant leap into the mainstream – they’ll always be a bit too abrasive and lo-fi for mass acceptance – Twerp Verse is the sound of a band standing on the verge of great things.

No Ripcord

With their 3rd LP, the Massachusetts four-piece are at their most pop-sensible, with the ever-growing influence of the synths that first made an appearance in second LP Foil Deer before becoming a more focal point of Dupuis's 2016 solo effort, Slugger.


Dupuis and her bandmates have a knack for pairing sugary hooks with chaotic musical accompaniment, resulting in a push-pull effect that is occasionally disorienting and just as often exhilarating.


“Twerp Verse” stands as Speedy Ortiz’s most confident, biting, and refined album to date whose urgent message rings clear, and reinstates the fact that the personal is political.

The Line of Best Fit

This is the most listener-friendly and accessible that Speedy Ortiz have ever been. But the band hasn’t left behind their heavy grunge sound ... They’ve just given their sound a clever makeover, and taken the next step in their evolution as a band by doing so.

A.V. Club

Twerp Verse is as strong as anything the band has compiled.

Tense, knotted, suspicious of climaxes, their third official album is the right album at the right time for them.

Twerp Verse is a solid entry that should please fans of Speedy Ortiz and might also gain them some new ones with its hints of pop.

Loud and Quiet
Musically, ‘Twerp Verse’ has more in common with Sadie Dupuis’ home demos than previous Speedy Ortiz records, with a lo-fi production sound that gives the album a sense of lightness in spite of the themes of frustration. Even the lightheartedness of the album’s title is key – on ‘Twerp Verse’, Speedy Ortiz are refusing to get bogged down in the slime. But they want you to know that it’s there.
The 405
She and the rest of the band perform a zeitgeist hat trick: making an album about issues of the present, inspired by sounds of the past, that seems likely to hold up in the future.
Crack Magazine

Combining heavy instrumentation with sweet sounding melody, Twerp Verse is the best demonstration so far of the Speedy Ortiz balancing act. An enjoyable record by a band working hard to have a good time.

The Skinny

Twerp Verse is a polished, sonically inventive record that’s both playful and punchy, but its purpose feels unclear.

Spectrum Culture

There’s a lot of well-crafted tension on Twerp Verse, but when taken as a whole, the album lacks the sort of catharsis that Speedy Ortiz really need.

FLOOD Magazine

The band ... deliberately favor Pavement-inspired oddness in an attempt to introduce some levity into these songs. But it’s an unnecessary whimsy, and one that serves more to erase (or at least reduce) the passion and fire that was present in their first two records, which is ultimately needed if these songs are to make the statement the band intends.

Serviceable to the dying breed that is p4k indie. Stuck somewhere in between delivering something gritty or something with more pop appeal; the former being something the band was always much better at achieving. Hope to see the band approach the sloppy, grunge stylings of the previous records again soon(as grossly niche as that genre can be nowadays). They definitely had an interesting riot grrl and In Utero-era Nirvana combo style that's sorely missing here.
A pleasant surprise from an indie rock album. the singing is so odd but it fits in this chaotic, noisy, soundscape that it goes for. The writing is clever and refreshing. It nails it's direction and gives a very pleasurable listen for the entirety of it's runtime. I would highly recommend.
Although similar to last years Charly Bliss debut, the fun is not quite as much apparent on this album, but the tracks are still noticeably catchy and the album as a whole is a considerably good undertaking.

Favorite track: Villain
As on past albums, Speedy Ortiz draw from generations of indie rock past to create an accessibly grungy album, striking an appealing balance between sparkle and crunchy grittiness. Sadie Dupuis remains a compelling lyrics writer, channeling personal experiences into confrontational songs delivered with just enough sweetness that you might miss the punch. But something about “Twerp Verse” falls short. There’s a slight sense that the album is a little bit off. Dupuis’s ... read more
Some of the most musically strange indie rock I've ever heard. Those of y'all who are really into interesting uses of meter changes and key modulation will dig this a lot.
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Year End Lists

#43/No Ripcord


#24/Uproxx (First Half)

Track List

  1. Buck Me Off
  2. Lean In When I Suffer
  3. Lucky 88
  4. Can I Kiss You?
  5. Backslidin'
  6. Villain
  7. I'm Blessed
  8. Sport Death
  9. Alone with Girls
  10. Moving In
  11. You Hate the Title
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thisisabtlgrnd, patton, Edgeworth, bgod

Added on: February 21, 2018