With plenty of nods to Pavement and other nineties alt-rock greats, the Massachusetts four-piece Speedy Ortiz stakes out its own territory on the merit of its whip-smart lyrics and eschewing of self-seriousness. The band self-identifies as part of the “snack rock” genre, and the quartet’s LiveJournal (the very existence of which is a bit offbeat) documents their life on the road with each post featuring a “pup of the day.” Put together, this might be the perfect setup for an eye-roll, if not for Sadie Dupuis’ knack for poetic songwriting and Speedy Ortiz’s gleefully wandering arrangements heavy on distortion but anchored by catchy, knotty hooks. Their new EP, “Real Hair,” takes the listener on a journey through sleepless nights, experiences that include falling for “bonebags” and waiters, and word play such as “every trope a trophy world’s designed to want.” The comparisons the quartet draws to nineties rock legends, by the way, are coming full circle; the band’s April 16 visit to the Empty Bottle will be right after a tour with Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks. Yes, Speedy Ortiz has truly arrived. (Robert Szypko)
April 16 at Empty Bottle, 1035 North Western, (773)276-3600. 8:30pm. $10. 21+.