Calumet don’t spare the funk in their nostalgic new single Save Us From Ourselves — showcasing today on Tinnitist.
Serving as a companion piece to the Phoenix funkateers’ 2020 summer hit This Is How it Ends, Save Us From Ourselves decries the dismantling of American democracy by a “handful of awful people who mislead millions for their own gain and political power,” according to bandmember Jason Mitchell. “The earlier song foretells of a dystopian future heading our way due to decisions made (or not made) recently. The latter acknowledges that our society is infected by poisonous lies and it feels that we may already be too far gone to save it.”
Mitchell reveals it was the “fastest” they’ve ever produced a song — one month between writing it and releasing it, to be exact. “There was an urgency to its creation after the Capitol insurrection,” he says. “The U.S. is gripped by a darkness it may not be able to escape. Lyrically, I like to plant a seed to question why people believe what they do. There’s a fine line between being a good communicator or being preachy; I don’t like to hit people over the head with obvious criticism. But still, some situations are so dire, they demand that things be said to call out wrong-doing or foolishness.”
Drawing on a host of classic sounds and styles, Save Us From Ourselves was produced by long-time engineer and studio owner John Herrera, who has been producing for Calumet since they broke out in the early 2000s. The band features vocalist/keyboardist Eric Mobley, rotating bassist and guitarists Jason Mitchell and Josh Prior, drummer Jeff Pivin, percussionist Ian White, alto saxophonist/flutist Marvin Scott and multi-instrumentalist Jeff Jones on tenor sax, soprano sax and flute.
With a career spanning more than two decades now, Calumet have a diverse array of singles among its back catalogue, as well as two top-tier studio albums: The 2002 debut Retro Energy, and its long-awaited followup Life In Transition, released just last year.