Upset – ’76 EP (Stereogum Premiere)

Upset is something of a supergroup at this point. Previously, vocalist/guitarist Ali Koehler played drums in Vivian Girls and Best Coast, and Upset’s current drummer, Patty Schemel, was formerly Hole’s percussionist. Bass player Rachel Gagliardi is also in Slutever, and guitarist Lauren Freeman is a member of Long Beach pop punk garage outfit Benny The Jet Rodriguez (formerly Jennifer Prince of La Sera was part of the group). Listening to Upset drives all these other bands completely out of your mind, though, with their smattering of pop-punk energy and anxiety-addled rock riffs.

Today we’re premiering Upset’s ’76 EP, the eight-song follow-up to their debut record She’s Gone. It includes the homage to Charlie Brown’s beloved “Linus” that they released as a one-off last year, a moody track that fits nicely with Hail Mary “I miss you” anthem “Do You Still Hate Me?” and the stark nostalgia of “Wonder.” Closing out the EP, “Wonder” meanders through memories of growing up with slow sadness, culminating in a Bleed American reference really hits home for me: that Jimmy Eat World album was the first CD I ever bought with my own money.

“It doesn’t feel good but at least it feels like something,” Koehler sings on the end of “Home,” a flippant, fitting commentary on the knotty, complex relationship some of us have with our place of origin. Upset’s music is a kind of of emotional eye roll, the ideal soundtrack for the days when everything irks you. It’s vulnerable, brittle punk rock that fearlessly takes on negativity and pummels it into submission with catchy, clever songs. Stream the whole EP below.

This spring they’re touring with Colleen Green — another favorite around here — so get out to a show if you can! Full dates below.

03/30 Scottsdale, AZ – Pub Rock
03/31 El Paso, TX – The Loversprout
04/01 Austin, TX – Hotel Vegas
04/02 Ft. Worth, TX – The Grotto
04/03 Houston, TX – The Shop
04/04 New Orleans, LA – Circle Bar
04/05 Birmingham, AL – Seasick Records
04/06 Atlanta, GA – Drunken Unicorn
04/07 Durham, NC – The Pinhook
04/08 Baltimore, MD – Metro Gallery
04/09 Philadelphia, PA – Lava Space
04/10 Brooklyn, NY – Shae Stadium
04/11 Pittsburgh, PA – Modern Formations
04/12 Cincinnati, OH – Woodward Theater
04/13 Chicago, IL – Beat Kitchen
04/14 Milwaukee, WI – Cocoon Room
04/15 Minneapolis, MN – Hexagon
04/16 Fargo, ND – The Hawk’s Nest
04/18 Missoula, MT – The Real Lounge
04/19 Moscow, ID – The Pizza Pit
04/20 Seattle, WA – The Black Lodge
04/21 Portland, OR – Bunk Bar
04/22 Arcata, CA – The Farmhouse
04/23 San Francisco, CA – Rickshaw Stop

The ’76 EP is out 3/31 on cassette via Lauren Records. Pre-order the tape here.