Today’s Song: Seattle’s THEM Emerge With a Grunge-Laced Pop/Rock Fervor on “Can’t Call It Mine”

THEM © Ericka Clevenger
THEM © Ericka Clevenger
Seattle pop/rock band THEM pay homage to their hometown’s grunge roots while finding their own exhilarating voice in the indie space on “Can’t Call It Mine,” a charged and churning fever dream that hits hard and leaves a lasting mark.
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Stream: “Can’t Call It Mine” – THEM

Grungy, gritty, fresh, and all fired up, THEM’s first song of the year is as impassioned as it is intoxicating.

The teenaged pop/rock band from Seattle pay homage to their hometown’s roots, while finding their own exhilarating voice in the indie space on “Can’t Call It Mine,” a charged and churning fever dream that hits hard and leaves a lasting mark. Nothing makes for a more cathartic release than a solid, searing grudge – especially when those visceral feelings can’t be easily expressed – and what better grudge to hold, than to a so-called partner gaslighting you, dismissing your feelings and denying you your identity?

THEM are unleashed as they finally let go in a haze of dramatic, sweltering sonic heat and raw, achingly vulnerable emotion.

Cant Call it Mine - THEM
Can’t Call It Mine – THEM
Told me to learn my lesson
That he knows best and
He tells me I could never understand
Still try to impress him
Such an ache in my chest when
He tells me I’m spending
too much time with my band
You don’t make it easy on me anymore
Picking new fights to level out the score
Then calling me pretty, both knees on the floor
Saying you miss me,

Released February 29, 2024 via version iii (“an alternative to traditional record labels and distribution“), “Can’t Call It Mine” is the beginning of a bold new era for Seattle’s THEM. Three years out from their debut “BAD 4 U” – and when the band’s ages spanned from just 16 to 19 – THEM have honed their craft and their identity without sacrificing any of their charm or youthful energy. Comprised of Thompson Whitehead, Hudson Steere, Ellie Vann, and Maia Schinkel, the four-piece have already shared stages with artists like Duckwrth, Blu DeTiger, Dayglow, Jens Lekman, and MICHELLE, and are poised for an especially exciting year as they roll out their sophomore EP one track at a time.

“Can’t Call It Mine” is truly a singular reintroduction: While grungy, effected electric guitars call back to grunge legends (and hometown heroes) Nirvana, the band’s hot-on-the-mic vocals, shuffling guitars, and sweetly invigorating melodies are distinctive and equally as emphatic. They expertly build tension and energy, rising to a resounding climax where all those pent-up feelings come flooding out at once in a dazzling, dizzying rush:

But you don’t pickup my calls
See you posting online
When I bring it up
you say I’m wasting our time

Don’t tell me i know
I’m supposed to be fine
I love what you built but I don’t like the design
I can’t call it mine
No I can’t call it mine
I can’t call it
THEM © Ericka Clevenger
THEM © Ericka Clevenger

“‘Can’t Call It Mine’ holds a special place in our hearts, being one of the few songs collaboratively penned from start to finish by our band,” THEM tell Atwood Magazine. “In a concise two-minute span, the song skillfully weaves fiery anger, conflict, passion, and resolution into its lyrics, crafting a captivating narrative. This track captures the moment when the challenge of staying with someone surpasses the difficulty of letting them go. It explores the complexities of a person or situation one desires but cannot keep, encapsulating the bittersweet emotions that accompany such realizations.”

“Drawing inspiration from the likes of Olivia Rodrigo, Claire Rosinkranz, and Clairo, our band has crafted a piece that not only reflects these influences but also carves out its own unique identity.”

I’ve made it so easy for you
Hearing you out ’cause I have to
Walked hundreds of miles in your shoes
But baby you don’t even try to

As catchy as it is uncompromising, “Can’t Call It Mine” sets the tone as THEM reemerge in 2024, more unapologetic and self-assured than ever. This truth already holds for their second song of the year: Released in mid-April, “Confused and Upset” is bouncy and  buoyant – more bubblegum than bubblegrunge, but nonetheless immersive, hypnotic, seductive, and all-consuming. THEM are doing it their way, and we can’t wait to hear what more they’ve got in store over the coming months!

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:: stream/purchase Can’t Call It Mine here ::
:: connect with THEM here ::
Stream: “Can’t Call It Mine” – THEM

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Cant Call it Mine - THEM

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? © Ericka Clevenger

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