Welcome to The Drop, Refinery29's home for exclusive music video premieres. We want to shine the spotlight on women artists whose music inspires, excites, and (literally) moves us. This is where we'll champion their voices.
There is, alas, very little potty humor in Potty Mouth's new song "22," a raucous examination of the weirdest part of your twenties. Instead, the East Coast pop punk band focuses on the more upsetting things about the age of 22: how it makes you feel infantilized, and how you still long for it even though, rationally, you understand that age is just a number.
"Don't want to wake up 22," the band croons over and over again. With all that repetition, you can't help but feel that band doth protest too much — maybe they do want to wake up 22. (Don't we all?)
"I really liked being 22," Abby Weems, the lead vocalist and guitarist, tells Refinery29. "It felt like a fun age and our band did a lot in that time, so it was really exciting. But ... it felt like an age where I suddenly needed to become more of an adult."
In the music video, which debuts today, the band — made up of Weems, 25, on guitar/vocals, Ally Einbinder, 30, on bass, and Victoria Mandanas, 28, on drums — explores the boredom and alienation of that specific age. The band members are isolated in the video, each one existing in a separate ecosystem and season. Einbinder, the bassist, lounges on a beach chair in a summer set, while Weems is in winter and Mandanas is picnicking in fall. The changing seasons in the video represent that time itself is just a construct.
"When we look all confused, and we're looking at the hanging [bird], and the leaves that are attached to clamps — that's supposed to represent that realizing that, okay, this is an artificially constructed reality we exist in, and time isn't real," Einbinder explains.
As the video progresses, the bandmates swap locales, exploring the different climates until, finally, they start destroying the sets. Being young is desirable, but time is also a myth, so, who cares?
Potty Mouth has been dishing achey, plaintive pop-punk for the better half of a decade. The three-piece band met at Smith College, where Einbinder and Mandanas attended as students, and hasn't stopped playing together since. They make a point of curating mostly women spaces when they play and when they tour. "We are a three piece, but when we play live, we always have another guitarist," says Weems. "We always make sure to have someone who is not a cis male [playing second guitar]. That's really important to us. And when we book shows, we prefer not to play with all men. There's just little things like that we do to make sure that we're contributing in that way."
Adds Einbinder, "There is not a shortage of women who play guitar. There really isn't anymore. That's a myth. Historically, rock music instruments have been dominated by men, but at this point — there is not a shortage of talented women who are playing music."
The band's album, SNAFU, hailing from independent label Get Better Records, will debut on March 1, 2019.
Check out the music video for "22," directed by Nydia Hartono and Ari Anderson and debuting exclusively on Refinery29, below.