Like the snow outside, rumors had been swirling lately around a potential new Pearl Jam
album waiting in the wings, and today we have confirmation that the band is indeed gearing up for a release, as well as a new track "Can't Deny Me". The song was originally released as an exclusive for members of the band's group of ultra-fans Ten Club (stunned that those are still a thing), though it makes its public release today.
Capitalizing on the political and social climate of our present day and age, "Can't Deny Me" is full of politically-charged riffage and is likely Pearl Jam's attempt at a Trump-era #resistance jam, though it notably lacks any identifying characteristics. It feels a little weaker in that sense, opting for generic, veiled lines such as "You plant your lying seeds, watch as the roots take hold, the country you are now poisoning, condition critical", somewhat in the same vein as Broken Social Scene's one-size-fits-all resistance track "Protest Song". It could just be me, but I think Pearl Jam has the notoriety and backing to deliver a song with some more cutting and direct lines.
Otherwise, it's about as quintessential a Pearl Jam track as you could expect, with plenty of grooving riffs affable to the headbanger in all of us. It's also interesting to hear how Eddie Vedder's voice has changed over the years, as he sounds more in line on the new track with classic rock revivalists like Velvet Revolver-era Scott Weiland instead of an Andy from Parks and Rec
approximation of himself. Regardless, the track is solid all around, and does justice to the Eddie Vedder tattoo you got all those years ago.
Pearl Jam's upcoming album currently does not have a title or release date set.