Sad13’s Slugger Hits Home


Meghan Mahar

Sadie Dupuis, multi-instrumentalist and lyricist of Speedy Ortiz, debuts her own sound with her first solo LP Slugger (pronounced as “Sadie”). Dupuis wants the world to know that she is an empowered individual that is not satisfied with the status quo.

Dupuis’s success and quality of craft can be attributed to all of her past experience. She earned a degree in music and writing with a concentration in poetry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Barnard College. She later earned her Master of Fine Arts at University of Massachusetts Amherst. Dupuis worked with one band and had a side project before finding success with Speedy Ortiz, an alternative band that released its first EP in 2011. Dupuis abandoned her job to pursue her passion with Speedy Ortiz and has not looked back.

Sadie Dupris is now challenging the confines of society with her debut as Sad13. Slugger is an  11-track project, which consists of experimental tracks that push the limits of existing genres. Dupuis layers dance-worthy beats with electrifying guitar and synth, creating grungy alternative with a uniquely pop twist. The lyrics counter this catchy sound; where Dupuis tells her story in more words than a pop verse could ever contain. Dupuis captures feelings of garage-band angst with a Lana Del Rey degree of darkness on important topics such as female independence and consent.

“Fixina” is everything one would imagine a grunge track about love to be: distorted synth and electric guitar with a simile comparing love to narcotics. Dupris resounds the struggles of being in love with someone who is a bad influence like “a toxic wonderland of narcotics.”

Slugger’s fourth track “Get a Yes” is a bold change of how music portrays sex. The usual illusion of glamor that normally surrounds the topic is stripped away. Dupuis is perfectly straightforward with her point: a lighthearted instrumental with electronic touches contrasts an upfront message that consent is necessary for all parties involved.

Dupuis ends the album with newfound confidence. “Coming Into Powers” is a self-validating, girl power anthem, which Dupuis owns who she is and acknowledges her own accomplishments. Featured rap artist and self-proclaimed activist Sammus complements Dupuis’s vocals. Both artists come together to shut down haters and prove that gender will not be an obstacle on their journeys to success: “Girls on the microscope see the truth about you trolls / Intrinsically, you were born as good as me / I’m coming into powers.”

Slugger serves as a cultural piece that places Sadie Dupris amongst alternative’s female icons. Putting a grunge twist on bold social justice issues is a great risk, but Sad13 is the perfect result. Dupris puts her heart and soul into song, converting feelings of frustration with today’s world and channeling it into something far greater – a collection of powerful, feminist ballads that will resonate with females everywhere.