Historically, Massachusetts is a hotbed for fuzzed-out College Rock. It’s where Amherst’s Dinosaur Jr. first fiddled with the Muff pedal knobs that gave You’re Living All Over Me its iconic sludginess. Galaxie 500 strummed its first droning G chords in Cambridge while still enrolled at Harvard. It’s also where the four members of TWEN met — in Boston, circa 2015.
Though the band has since relocated to Nashville, Tenn., its debut EP—TWEN LIVE — is a woozy amalgam of its hometown’s signature sounds. The record’s title isn’t a touch of ironic embellishment. It’s actually a recording of TWEN’s first-ever show at The Trade Shack in Allston, Mass., brimming with anxious energy. Standout cut “Damsel” ripples with the languid Jangle Pop riffage of Drop Nineteens, tinged with some of Real Estate’s New Jerseyan tranquility. Stir in Blake Babies’ Folk Pop sentimentality and you’ve got the recipe for the Garage Rock that TWEN strums up with apparent ease, glistening with summery melodicism and kissed by coastal breezes.
“Mostly, we feel our music has been informed by our college years in Boston and the bands,” guitarist Ian Jones told Nashville’s The Deli Magazine in an interview last year.
There’s definitely a sense of this homesickness tucked away in TWEN’s sound. Singer/guitarist Jane Fitzsimmons — who has designed an impressive catalog of Bandcamp album covers — sends vowel sounds spiraling into the bittersweet abyss forged by Jones and bassist Jim Connily. Imagine Molly Rankin’s reverb-soaked yawps, sprinkle in a considerable amount of gloom and you’ll get the picture.
The quartet plans to drop a 10-song LP this spring, via Florida-based Fuzz Baby Records.