The Mummies performing live
|Origin||San Mateo, California, United States|
|Years active||1988–1992, 1993, 1994, intermittently since|
|Labels||Estrus, Telstar, Planet Pimp, Sympathy for the Record Industry|
|Past members||Trent Ruane
Originally hailing from San Mateo, California, the band was formed by Trent Ruane (organ, vocals), Maz Kattuah (bass), Larry Winther (guitar) and Russell Quan (drums). They became a key part of San Francisco's burgeoning garage punk scene, along with The Phantom Surfers. With influences of surf rock, 1950s and 1960s garage rock bands such as The Sonics and more contemporary garage punk bands like Thee Mighty Caesars the Mummies eschewed the contemporary rock music of their time. Their first show was at the Chi Chi Club in San Francisco in December 1988. The Mummies are especially known for their matching, tattered mummy costumes they wore on stage and their impertinent and insulting attitude that they brought with them. They created and promoted the concept of 'Budget Rock', which rejected professionalism and star status in favor of a simplified do-it-yourself (DIY) aesthetic. As part of this concept they performed and recorded only on outdated and often damaged equipment. For a tour vehicle they used a garishly painted 1963 Pontiac ambulance. As part of their lo-fi manifesto, they released their music only on vinyl for many years, allowing 'official' CD format releases only in the 2000s. Billy Childish would later say that The Mummies were the only garage group he really loved.
The band's first single "That Girl" was recorded in a furniture warehouse in San Francisco. It was released on their own Pre-B.S. label, with further singles following on labels such as Estrus, Telstar, Regal Select, and Rekkids. These early singles were compiled for the band's first long player, The Mummies Play Their Own Records, in 1990. The following year Crypt records sent Mike Mariconda to help the band record their debut album proper. Recorded in the back of a cabinet shop in Belmont, California, the band rejected the material as they preferred the lo-fi sound of their earlier releases. This material was later released on the bootleg album Fuck the Mummies. They started again, and the results were released in 1992 as Never been Caught.
Later Years (feat. Break-Ups)
They toured the US in 1991, playing with Childish's Thee Headcoats on their tour of Northwest America, but broke up on New Year's Day 1992, shortly before Never Been Caught was released. They later reunited for two European tours, in 1993 and 1994. The '94 tour had Beez from the Smugglers filling in on bass. Their next LP, a fake live album 'Party at Steve's House,' was actually recorded at an industrial warehouse in Martinez, CA with Darrin of Supercharger playing bass.
- Maz Kattuah has been involved in several bands since the demise of the Mummies, with his current project being Christina and the Bippies.
- Russell Quan has been involved in numerous projects since the early nineties, including the Count Backwurds, the Dukes of Hamburg, the Easys, the Phantom Surfers, the Flakes, the Bippies and the Bobbyteens. He is somewhat of a celebrity amongst garage aficionados for his playing, for his discovery/promotion of the band Supercharger, and for the way he salutes the flag.
- Larry Winther played guitar and wrote or co-wrote a handful songs for San Francisco indie rock band The Orange Peels for seven years.
- At one time Trent Ruane played with the Phantom Surfers and the Untamed Youth, but has maintained a low public profile since the Mummies' breakup.
- Larry Winther and Maz Kattuah also played in an early Foster City, California band called The Batmen.
The band reunited in 2003, releasing Death by Unga Bunga on CD only, leaving behind their original "vinyl only" ethos.
The Mummies played an unannounced show in June 2008 at the Stork Club in Oakland, Cal. as well as a show in October 2008 in Valencia, Spain at the Funtastic Dracula Carnival. They also played in June 2009 at Born Bad Festival at Le Trabendo in Paris, France.
In October, 2009, The Mummies played two shows at the Budget Rock 8 festival in San Francisco.
- The Mummies: Play their own records! LP (1992), Estrus Records
- Never Been Caught LP (1992), Telstar - issued in the UK as Fuck C.D.s! It's The Mummies, on Hangman Records, and on CD in 2002 by Telstar
- Party At Steve's House LP (1994), Pinup
- Runnin' On Empty Vol. 1 LP (1996), Estrus
- Runnin' On Empty Vol. 2 LP (1997), Estrus
- Death By Unga Bunga!! CD (2003), Estrus Records - Rerelease of many earlier tracks, only Mummies album released exclusively on CD
- 1991 Northwest Budget Rock Massacre! (1991), Pre-B.S.
- The Mummies Vs. The Wolfmen EP (1991), Sympathy for the Record Industry - split with the Wolfmen
- Live At Café The Pit's (1993), Demolition Derby - split with Supercharger
- The Mummies Vs. Supercharger Tour '93 7" Flexi EP (1993), Pinup - split with Supercharger
- "That Girl" 7" (1990), Pre-B.S. - reissued by Estrus Records in 1996
- "Food, Sickles, And Girls" 7" (1990), Pre-B.S. - reissued by Estrus Records in 1996
- The Fabulous Mummies 7" (1990), Estrus
- Shitsville 7" EP (1990), Regal Select
- "Skinny Minnie" (1990), Rekkids
- Greg Lowery & The Mummies EP (1992), Rekkids
- Larry Winther And His Mummies (live) EP (1992), Planet Pimp
- Introduction to The Mummies (7" promo) (1992), Estrus
- "Stronger Than Dirt" (1992), Telstar
- "(You Must Fight To Live) On The Planet Of The Apes" 7" EP (1993), Sympathy for the Record Industry.
- "Gwendolyn" (1994), Pinup
- "Get Late!" (1995), Estrus
- Double Dumb Ass... In The Face double-7"EP (1996), Estrus
- Tales From Estrus Volume One (1990), Estrus
- The Estrus Half-Rack (1991), Estrus
- Clam Chowder & Ice vs. Big Macs & Bombers (1991), Nardwuar the Human Serviette
- Follow That Munster: Raw Sixties Punk Vol. 2 (1991), Rock Records
- Groin Thunder (1992), Dog Meat Records
- Fuck You Spaceman! (1992), Planet Pimp
- Turban Renewal: A Tribute To Sam The Sham & The Pharaohs (1994), Norton Records
- Blood Orgy Of The Leather Girls Soundtrack LP (1994), Planet Pimp
- Strong, Martin C. (2003) The Great Indie Discography, Canongate, ISBN 1-84195-335-0, p. 881
- Schinder, Scott. "The Mummies". TrouserPress. Retrieved 2008-04-13.
- Deming, Mark. "The Mummies Biography". allmusic.com. Macrovision Corporation. Retrieved 2008-04-13.
- Artistica - Modern Art Blog » Blog Archive » Interview with Billy Childish
- MySpace.com - FUNTASTIC DRACULA CARNIVAL - ES - Garage / Punk / R&B - www.myspace.com/funtasticdraculacarnivalcom
- - FR - BORN BAD RECORDS - www.myspace.com/bornbadrecords