There is a Jane's Addiction bootleg vinyl double LP called Mephisto Demos which includes a few early Jane's demos, plus several songs from some unknown band (which an unsuspecting buyer would be lead to believe was Jane's Addiction). There was a time when some fans speculated that these demos were from Flower Quartet or some other early band of a Jane's member, but they are apparently actually a band with no Jane's ties whatsoever called Mephisto Walz.
Update-- well, it looked for a while that the mystery band mystery was solved, but not so. I recently received this email from a guy named Mike.. "Not long ago I got to talk to Barry from Mephesto Walz, and he told me that those are not their songs. Had he been a member who joined along the way I would take it with a grain of salt, but he is the founding member of the band. He said he had heard about the tape and thought it was some of the demo songs they submitted to Triple X, but it turned out not to be the case."
Update 2-- The 20-minute long song "All White People Look Alike" that closes side 4 of the LP has been discovered to be by Brian Woodbury, from a 1987 LP release on the Some Phil label. Neither Woodbury nor Some Phil have any idea how it ended up on the bootleg, nor how the false rumor got started that Jane's was signed to Warner Brothers because of it. "All White People Look Alike" is now available on CD at www.somephil.com.
So it turns out the "mystery band" isn't just one band, but a few different random bands.
Update 3-- A friendly fellow named Jason just wrote me with the following info: "...I did figure out that at least side 2 and possibly side 3 are a project of Allan Aguirre's who is from the christian bands Scaterd Few and Spy Glass Blue. There is a Spy Glass Blue album called Shadows that has an updated version of the song "Fighting Back" (track 1 of side 2 of the mephisto demos) called "Can You Feel". Allan is the singer. You can find Spyglass Blue and some Scaterd Few @ www.spyglassblue.com, Accidental Sirens or just do a search."
Update 3.1-- Allan Aguirre himself wrote in to clear up the origin of these 3 songs: "I can confirm that the 3 tracks "Fighting Back" (actual title is Can You Feel), "Forever or Never" and "Holding Stare" are not Jane's Addiction but actually me and my band Cygnet. These 3 songs were on a demo I submitted personally to Triple X records in 1987-88."
Update 4-- Erik from janesaddiction.org has also spent some time trying to unravel this mystery. He sent me the following message:
The Mephisto Waltz tracks are interesting - when I was initially looking into finding out who they were and ran into Mephitso Walz, I thought it was a dead end since it was mentioned from the band that they weren't theirs. However, back when I had this album, I sent MP3s of just the Mephisto Waltz tracks to someone who said they were with the band and they said they sounded like band demos from before their first self-titled release. I wish I still had that email.
Pissed off Krishnas From Hell pts 1 & 2 are just demos from an LA band called Pissed off Krishnas From Hell. I got an email from a guy calling himself lub or lob or something who said he was in that band. I hadn't heard of anything else he's done. I may still have that email.
Also, for what it is worth, I am fairly positive that "Minglewood Blues" is just a cover of the Grateful Dead song. I have no idea on the band tho.
Update 5-- the aforementioned Lob emailed me a couple times and pretty much cleared up the origin of this LP once and for all...
this is LOB.
I was searching the web for PISSED OFF KRISHNAS FROM HELL and came across your posting regarding the Mephisto Demo's LP.. and that you mention me was nice.
i can give you the full details of this LP.. how it came to be.. where it came from.. and who else is in POKFH..etc..
IF you really care any more and want to know.. if not.. sorry for bothering..
just thought i would try to connect.. and help with your data..
just FYI.. me personally.. i went on from there to start a project called INSTAGON, a band that never repeats the same line up.. ever. ..its a conceptual project applying chaos theory to the paradigm of a " band " or musical entertainment. www.instagon.com
okay.. so.. please remember that this was 25 years ago.. and so some details are kinda fuzzy.. but i have a pretty good memory and so this is what i can share with you..
in late 1985 i started working at a record store called NEALS RECORDS. it was in Glendale,CA. it was owned by a person named Neal Shustack. I worked at this store for about 2 years. During the 80's I was personally really involved in the "cassette culture", there was a postal network of people that recorded and traded live music.. home made music.. odd sounds.. but mostly live recordings was what I was into. I had a pretty large collection of cassettes when i started working at Neals.. and being in record store, meeting more music people.. this just made my tape collection grow. So I was a total tape person.. i really was into tapes.. trading tapes.. listening to tapes.. and well tapes, in those days. sometimes led to bootlegs.. Neal was a bootlegger .. he was involved with the bootleg record community... he was later convicted of the largest music bootlegging operation ever busted. I will admit that I gave a few recordings to Neal.. and that it was very cool seeing some of my tapes appear as records and early CD bootlegs.. but I did not really wish to get too involved with the "industry" part of it..
as I said.. i was a cassette person.. and so i kept tapes.. still do.. sometimes for really really long times.. I had a tape.. it was a personal tape.. something of MINE.. that i listened to .. it included a recording of All White People Look Alike.. from the radio.. the Mephisto Waltz original demos ..that i had gotten a copy of from Bari or Jett.. cant remember which one.. the Janes Demos' that we are all familiar with (i had them on numerous personal tapes.. i liked them.. and so did girls..it was good to have on hand) and the final piece was this recording of PISSED OFF KRISHNAS FROM HELL.. this was a one off project.. we did this ONE recording it was done in an apartment in North Hollywood. the players are Regan Boon (cousin to D.Boon from the Minutemen) on guitar, Jon Vogel on bass, and myself Lob Instagon on vocals.. we did this one recording of "Minglewood Blues" a Grateful Dead cover.. it was put on the end of this tape as filler.. i just needed something to fill the tape.. and this was a fresh recording. I had this cassette at the record store.... although it had all this other stuff on it.. the only LABEL on the tape said "JANE'S ADDITION DEMOS" .. and it had a piece of paper folded inside that listed the tracks ..one day this tape went missing... i was not too thrilled about it.. i did not make too big of a deal about it.. I had additional copies of everything on it, except for the "All White People Look Alike" track that was taped off of the radio..and i did not know who it was... ( in retrospect.. its probable that Neal himself took this tape and produced this record.)
We were a busy store.. things got stolen all the time.. i went on with my life... a few months later.. we were pricing some new bootlegs that had come in from the mysterious place that bootlegs come from.. there was a new Janes Addiction boot.. a 2LP ..glossy cover.. really nice looking.. i turned it over and started reading the songs and began to be pretty upset.. here was a bootleg that had been made of one of my personal recreational tapes.. without asking me.. and now it was being sold to unsuspecting people AS Janes Addiction.. and I knew damn well that it was not.. well not all of it.. I approached Neal and asked him where the hell this record came from.. and he would not say.. i went on to tell him that this record was NOT Janes Addiction.. and if HE did not have anything to do with it.. he was getting ripped off.. I told him the demos that WERE of Janes on this release ..could easily be found elsewhere.. on 7" singles that we also carried.. and that the rest was not Janes at all.. in fact some of it was ME..and this THIS boot was from MY personal cassette that someone had stolen in HIS store.. ..(again.. probably himself who had done the deed) I was pretty pissed off.. but there was nothing really that could be done.. this record was already pressed.. it was done.. I think that whomever was involved were informed of their fuckup (probably by Neal) and this record did not make it to a 2nd pressing.. which is pretty rare and odd for bootlegs. .. as most re-press as different titles and recycle constantly.. but not this one.
so ..to recap.. this record is a bootleg forged from a personal tape from MY collection.. this tape contained recorded material by Brian Woodward, that was captured from radio to cassette (thank you Dr. Demento).. demos from Mephisto Walz that were dubbed from another tape. Demos of Janes Addiction, that were dubbed from another tape.. and Pissed Off Krishnas From Hell live demos also dubbed from another tape - including The "All New Pasteurized Minglewood Blues" (featuring Lob Instagon on vocals) as tape filler.. so everything on that record is at least 2nd or 3rd generation recordings.. The line on the back regarding All White People Look Alike being the song that got Janes their record deal was put there as a spiteful joke.. or an ignorant addition..by whomever did the record.. GROOVE records is a pretty ambiguous title for a fake label..so beyond asking Neal (who i think is still in jail) we have no other way of knowing who really pressed it.
personally its really funny.. that bootleggers would be this dumb.. not check out what they are wasting their money on.. and get duped that something is not what it says it is.. after the dust had settled i found it pretty amusing to be on this record with Janes.. and that this tape i had lost was now gonna be a collectors record for a long time.. I still have one.. I wonder what it's worth nowadays... lol
thanks for letting me spill my memory card out ..