Mentally Ill were one of the Chicago-area's first and most mysterious punk acts. Formed by 4 teenagers in Chicago's north shore suburbs, the band released a 7" EP called "Gacy's Place" in 1979, named after notorious Chicago-area serial killer John Wayne Gacy. College aspirations seemed to put the band to an early end, and outside of a few house parties, the original group never played live. Over the years, due to its crude sound and outrageous lyrics, "Gacy's Place" developed a cult following, finding such famous fans as Steve Albini
and Jello Biafra
. In 1982, the band, sporting a different line-up, put out a second 7" called "Sex Cells", which did not have the same impact as "Gacy's Place". In 2004, Alternative Tentacles
released the entire "Gacy's Place" recording session on CD, along with other demos that the band had recorded. In 2007, the original line-up played its first official gig, appearing at the after party for a screening of the documentary "You Weren't There: A History Of Chicago Punk 1977-1984". Since then, the band has continued to make sporadic live performances.