Mock Mucous Membrane poster by Tim Bradstreet.
So just who were Mucous Membrane anyway ?
Well, back in the late seventies, they were one of an uncountable number
of punk bands roaming the streets of London. Were they actually any good ?
Of course not but then that was never the point. Perhaps the only memorable
thing about Membrane is the fact that they were one of the first bands to bother making
a 'Music Video'. Said video was for 'Venus of the hardsell' and the whole
shebang was put together by Dean Motter.
After seeing the Sex Pistols play at the opening of the Roxy Club in London, John and Gary
were inspired to the point of forming their own band, Mucous Membrane. Their first gig took
place at the Casanova Club in Newcastle. John would return to this club less than a year later
with tragic consequences for
both Constantine and Astra Logue.
All of Membrane's music was written by John Constantine and Gary Lester. At some point during the
mid-eighties, the lyrics for Venus of the hardsell fell into the hands of
journalist Satchmo Hawkins, payment in kind from John Constantine who never showed up for a promised
Five years or so after the band broke up, John received a phone call from the distraught girlfriend
of the band's drummer, Beano. Ever the good samaritan, Constantine arrives at Beano's flat to find
the drummer a gibbering wreck. When Constantine learns that Beano's fragile mental state has been
caused by two Victorian ghosts who now haunt his former band mate's house, he steps in and tries to exorcise
them. The exorcism itself goes horribly wrong and it appears as if John has lost his life. Constantine
later turns up alive and well, just in time to gatecrash his own funeral! (Hellblazer #77, And The Crowd Goes Wild)
Despite making their debut in Newcastle, Constantine and company's more regular venue ended up
being 'The Electric Banana' , a club in Camden whose clientele was usually made up of punks, Hell's
Angels and mods. It was during one of these gigs that John met, and struck up a friendship with,
Rich Eldridge. Rich was the lead singer with another punk band, Fatal Gift. A good many years
later, Constantine would learn that Rich was the last true heir of King Arthur (during the course
of the Last Man Standing story arc.).
After releasing the hunger demon Mnemoth on the world, Gary Lester sought out his old band mate John
Constantine in the hope that he could recapture the creature. Constantine, with the aid of Papa Midnite,
bound the hunger demon in the hapless Gary Lester's body. Lester was then bricked up in a cell beneath
Midnite's club and left to be consumed from the inside by the demon (Hellblazer #2, A Feast Of Friends).
1977 : John Contantine and Gary Lester form Mucous Membrane.
1978 : Mucous Membrane release their one and only single "Venus Of The Hardsell"
John meets Rich Eldridge, future King Of England, and (at that time) current
lead singer for Fatal Gift.
1984 : Constantine is reunited with former Mucous Membrane drummer Beano and almost dies following a botched exorcism attempt.
1987 : John Constantine and Papa Midnite trap the hunger demon Mnemoth in Mucous Memrane co-founder Gary Lester's Body.
Dates taken from Vertigo Secret Files : Hellblazer, written by Michael Bonner
Chas profers his opinion on the musical merits of Mucous Membrane
Gary Lester, co-founder of Mucous Membrane, doomed at the hands of John Constantine.
John Constantine, lead singer of Mucous Membrane