By MIKE CHAIKEN
A long, long time ago—5,000 years ago to be more precise—the members of the group now known as Here Come The Mummies found themselves cursed for a life as the undead and, subsequently buried for centuries in the Egyptian desert.
It wasn’t until 1922, the story goes, they were unearthed and found in an ancient discotheque where they were “throwing down… (the) terrifying funk from beyond the grave.”
Here Come The Mummies released their latest album, “Cryptic” on May 14. And the band, which includes Eddie Mummy, K.W. Tut, Mummy Cass, Spaz, The Pole, Midnight, Mummy Rah, The Flu, and Java— arrive at the Mohegan Sun Wolf Den in Uncasville on Friday, June 7.
We caught up with Java via email to talk about the lives (and deaths) of Here Come The Mummies and their music.
Observer: There’s something about the living dead in 2013. Zombies are everywhere. And mummies, of course, are the living dead, as well. Why do you think people have the hots for the undead these days?
Java: Let’s face it, we are just plain sexy. And the living, y’all are cool, but we are the ultimate in taboo. We have a serious danger factor that drives any reasonable parent to the hardware store for stake lumber.
O: How has this helped Here Come The Mummies’ career?
J: Our blatant sex appeal has both helped and hurt, though we would really like to be known for our music instead of our boyish-dead-for-millennia good looks.
O: Here Come The Mummies are pretty funky. Where did the living undead learn to “get down” like that?
J: Same way everybody else did … by watching “Soul Train.”
O: Who do you guys look up to musically when you create your own particular style of funk?
J: We listen to everything: all styles, all eras. It may be The Fatback Band one minute, Beatles the next, and a little Iron Maiden and Fats Waller between snack and nap time.
O: If you guys were still back in ancient Egypt, what kind of dance would your fans be doing at a show?
J: It would still be the Fenk Shui. That dance is timeless, and has been done since Cleopatra first learned to double dutch.
O: There’s also a good deal of songs with a reggae feel. Have you been to Jamaica? If so, how do you handle the sun in all those bandages?
J: No, never been to Jamaica. We are total reggae frauds. Funny story: we fell in love with reggae listening to Madness (45 RPM) singles at 33 RPM.
O: Some of the lyrics on “Cryptic” are pretty “saucy.” In your time, what were you guys like with the ladies?
J: There is no “in your time.” I know it sounds crazy, but everybody loves a sexy mummy. It is a true 2,000 years ago as it was yesterday.
O: What was a “hot night on the town” in ancient Egypt?
J: Ten times as naughty as it is now. Think barrels of wine and a beast with 35 legs.
O: Are groupies a problem for Here Come The Mummies?
J: Depends if we ate our Wheaties.
O: How many of the songs are based on true stories and how many are stories of how Here Come The Mummies would like things to be?
J: They are all true … sort of. Like most things one creates, there is a nugget of truth inside. Me, I am full of nuggets.
O: Finally, what’s the scoop on the “curse” that landed you in the 21st century?
J: You know how boys are. We chased the wrong daughters … well, they were all right, it was their daddy who was the problem. He cursed us thinking that being undead mummies would be punishment, but one night of romper room turned into an eternity of romper room. Now how we got to the current day is another matter altogether.
Here Come The Mummies bring the funky sounds of the undead to the Mohegan Sun’s Wolf Den on Friday, June 7 at 8 p.m. For more information about the show, go to MoheganSun.com.
For more information about the band, go to HereComeTheMummies.com. You also can stream their album live at https://soundcloud.com/ideaden/sets/cryptic/s-paoxU.