The conversation started something like this…
Umphrey’s McGee entered I.V. Labs Studio in Chicago in November of 2016 to record what would become the band’s eleventh full-length studio album. The result was, it’s not us, the most vibrant, mature expression of the band’s growing studio prowess to date. “We decided to go in for a week, live, eat, and breathe Umphrey’s McGee,” recalls Joel, “we’re known as a strong live band, but we take so much pride in our writing. [In this album] the focus is on that writing.”
The first single “The Silent Type” is powered by a bombastic beat, funkified rhythms, fiery fretwork, and a chantable refrain, introducing it’s not us with a bright and brilliant bang. “Half Delayed” builds from airy guitar into an iridescent refrain, meanwhile, the bass strut anthemic beat production and percussive wallop of “Looks” could be the love child of Nine Inch Nails and Talking Heads. The metallic shredfest outro of “Remind Me” bleeds effortlessly into the gorgeous acoustic love song “You & You Alone.”
The album is Umphrey’s McGee at its peak prowess, creating music with both precision and emotional content 20 years into a career. it’s not us is an expression about it being bigger than individuals, it really isn’t about them – but all of us.