Logo 1978

Egg Foo Rock (1992)

Liner Notes for Egg Foo Rock:

Welcome, Friends:

A wise man once said a thing is not worth doing if it cannot be done well. The rock band Mente has never believed in this philosophy. The rock band Mente has never even heard of this philosophy.

"Egg Foo Rock" is the new three-cassette offering from the worst band in the history of rock and roll music. We spared no expense to ensure that these three cassettes in a Chinese food take-out box would perfectly recapture the feeling of our live shows. Like a Chinese repast, the music is sloppy and uneven, varying widely from dish to dish. It is also filled with bad chemicals. And it leaves the consumer unfulfilled, angry at his waiter, and above all, confused.

Excelentemente, the first tape, is probably the lowest quality recording that has ever been successfully sold as music. We see it as the equivalent of a poorly prepared egg roll before the main meal. John Murphy, founder of the rock band Mente, made these abysmal recordings with a portable recorder in his bedroom in suburban Wilmington, MA, circa 1978. Lonely and friendless, Murph cajoled several neighborhood kids into joining his imaginary band. Mente, as it was then constituted, never played a single concert. In fact, they could not play their instruments, as is all too obvious. The "drummer" hit an armchair with a stick. Until now, the existence of this tape, was only rumored, but it is now released for the first time, having been recently discovered underneath a sofa cushion at the Murphy estate.

Despite the lack of interest in music, the original members of Mente designed several albums covers and even the original bad 70s Mente logo. At this point we would like to point out that Mente is not an annoying 70s tribute band, we are an annoying actual 70s band. Founded in 1978, we are the oldest still-performing band on the Boston rock scene, and perhaps in the United States (except for The Styx, our heroes).

In the 80s, John Murphy's life changed in many ways. He secured employment at the Burlington Mall, specifically in Radio Shack (America's Technology Store). Here he tried in vain to improve the original tapes with studio wizardry, but to no avail. After earning the coveted transfer to the Dayton. Ohio office. Murph met and fell in love with a country singer he met in a Ramada Inn. Kim Deal soon became Mrs. John Murphy, and the couple moved back to Boston. or more specifically, to the ancestral Murphy home in Charlestown. where John retains his primary residence to this day. Besides John, there are 46 John Murphys in the Boston phone book.

Soon tiring of the domestic chores Murph forced her to perform, Mrs. John Murphy answered a Phoenix ad to join a band. They became the Pixies, a band that achieved world fame through almost no effort. Seeing how easy it was, John decided it was time to get the rock band Mente back together.

Unfortunately, he had no friends anymore. So he joined a Tuesday night bowling league underneath the mean streets of Central Square, Cambridge. There he met three hungry young lads who changed his life. Gringo Starr was a grizzled veteran of the Boston rock scene, having played several gigs as a bassist. He was given the drumming assignment, an instrument he had never played. Edward Van Mente and a balding man known simply as "Mazz" had also formed an imaginary band in their Rhode Island adolescence, although they could not play either. Despite their different backgrounds, the four had much in common. They were all from New England. They were all stupid. And they loved rock and roll.

After several coaching sessions from Mrs. John Murphy, the band played out. The first gig was at a bowling league party in an East Boston backyard in August 1989. With airplanes flying several hundred feet overhead and elderly Italo-Ainericans shaking their fists in anger from neighboring windows, all agreed it was a rousing success. Soon the song and the gigs were coming fast and furious. There are hundreds of songs in the Mente oeuvre, many of which have been totally lost. For years we wrote a new song for every gig to give our audience a feeling they had seen a unique show. Almost no song took more than ten minutes to write, and very few use more than three chords. To date, Mente has not played a minor chord in any song. Et Tu Mente? and Mente Bowls Your Mind, the main courses of this musical meal, are from the 1989-1991 period. Many songs were left off the tapes and may surface later.

Three years later and the band has changed. But not much. We have now played several hundred gigs at clubs and parties, primarily in Boston, Providence and New York. We tried several ambitious projects, including a rock opera ("Seventeen Seventy Rock") about the American Revolution that did about as well as the British at Bunker Hill. Most band biographies detail a band's rise to stardom after a rocky beginning, but in fact, the rock band Mente has never improved appreciably, except in the volume category. We now try to compensate or our mistakes by amplifying them.

So that is where we stand. We have been called many things in our day. Talentless nogoodniks? Perhaps. Cretins? We have never been even near Greece. Rock poets? Time will tell. That is or you, our audience, and not us, to decide. And what does the future hold for the rock band Mente? Only Terpsichore, the Muse of Dance, can answer that question. But as long as there is breath in our lungs, we will continue to sing our philosophy or song to new generations. The gigs may come a little further apart. The guitar solos may wander aimlessly. The singer may pause to remember words. All of this is a natural part nf the aging process. But the feeling will always he there. The feeling that there was once a corner of the earth where man was decent to his fellow man, and four kids from Nowheresville could forge an unspeakable, unforgettable music together.