gullbuy music review

The Mummies


The Mummies: Never Been Caught


Telstar Records


Image: The MummiesThe Mummies were legendary even while they existed. Proud to be in the pre-digital age, they made no bones about releasing only vinyl releases ("F*ck CDs" they said on them) - slabs of trashy no-fi snotty who gives a shit punk rock. They did not even really care if that slab of plastic made it into your hands, putting out singles in small quantities on even smaller labels. Eventually they put out a full-length (and a singles compilation) but only after they broke up - and all of this output was recorded as if through one microphone in someone's mom's garage on somebody's cousin's musical instruments not used since 1966.

This was in the early 90s - jumpcut to the early 00's and someone decided it was a good idea to re-release the Mummies album Never Been Caught on cd but ha-ha the joke is on the digital fools because this cd reissue on Telstar Records was lovingly mastered straight from a vinyl source - which only endears them closer to my heart because I've a love for cds made from lps (even if it is a legitimate release as is the case here).

The Mummies sound reminds me of the Sonics and Thee Headcoats (Billy Childish has even claimed the Mummies his favorite band at one time) but with a definite Californian punk mentality and sound added to the brew. The covers they do are great: Come on Up-the Rascals, Sooprize Package for Mr. Mineo-Supercharger, Shot Down-the Sonics, I'm Down-the Beatles, Skinny Minnie, Stronger Than Dirt, She Lied, Your Love, Uncle Willie, Justine, and Jezebel. But I think their originals are even better: Your Ass (Is Next in Line), Little Miss Tee-N-T, Rosie, The Ballad of Iron Eyes Cody, The Red Cobra #9, The Frisko Freeze, The Thing from Venus, Shut Yer Mouth, and (You Must Fight to Live) On the Planet of of the Apes (MY personal favorite). And Let's not forget the odd goof that is Mariconda's a Friend of Mine - some of us will get a chuckle out of this (extra card...heheheh).

The only two faults I find with this reissue: the fuzzed out recording style of this record makes it so it probably is not something you would listen to everyday and perhaps might be hard to listen to all in one sitting. The other oddity is the fact that at the end of the lp proper and before the bonus tracks, during Jezebel the sound just seems to cut off in mid-scream and we're left with the crackle of vinyl: whether that was on the original or not I'm not sure but maybe it is just a piss-take on the cd generation. Whether you like it or not - the Mummies are back!

---Patrick, February 4, 2003