Page 1

I would like to dedicate this book to one of the most important men in my life; my father Gilbert Gibson who passed away on October 29th, 2010 after a very brief but hard fought battle with terminal lung cancer.

Love ya pops!


There are a few people I would like to thank: first and foremost my wife Chantelle (I love you baby!) for always believing I could finish this project for the last few years; my friends and family that have always supported whatever I wanted to do; Josh Wood (stand up metal dude) for guiding me and helping me make this book one million times better than when I first put it out years ago; Evan Sentes for the killing artwork, Aaron Stainthorpe from My Dying Bride for delivering an excellent foreword and to all of the bands I talked to through the internet that made this happen: YOU ALL F’N RULE!!! Thank you from the bottom of my heart for contributing your stories to my book!!!

Hail Metal!!! Blair E. Gibson

INDEX Introduction.....6 Foreword.....7 Number...8 A........9-17 B........18-29 C........30-37 D........38-42 E........43-46 F........47-49 G........50-54 H........55-61 I........62-64 J........65-67 K........68-70 L........71-75 M........76-83 N........84-86 O........87-89 P........90-94 Q.......95 R........96-102 S........103-116 T........117-126 U........127

V........128-130 W........131-133 X........134 Y........135-136 Z........137-138 Appendix......139-146 Biography.....147


Around 2009, I started getting interested in why and how some bands chose their names. There were a multitude of sites out there with information like this but sadly they were lacking any heavy metal band name origins. Sure there some of the big names like AC/DC, Metallica, Iron Maiden, Megadeth, Black Sabbath and the list goes on. Other than that, the rest of the bands on these websites were pop music, punk, rock, country and even some rap. I was pissed off by the lack of heavy metal bands that were included (or not included) on these websites. That’s when I decided to do something about it myself! I scoured the internet for weeks and months and looked up every metal genre and subgenre that I could find. After I had compiled a list of said genres, I started to hunt down bands from each of these genres to ask them the ever important question of how the hell they came up with their band name. I touched on every genre from black metal to stoner rock to death metal to doom to grindcore to power metal and every genre in between. I contacted thousands of bands and heard back from a good number of them. Some them chose not to tell me their story, some of them told me the story was boring and not worth putting in my book and some people even told me they were embarrassed about their band name and didn’t really want to talk further about it. The responses I got from the band members themselves are sometimes humours (Skinless) and sometimes very well thought out and comprehensive (Virgin Steele). The heavy metal community are a loud and proud bunch of people who want their music heavy and fast and the volume knob turned up to an 11! I made this book for you guys. Read on to see how some of your favourite bands got their names. Check out why My Dying Bride chose their name. See how Borknagar and Dimmu Borgir came up with theirs. Every entry is an interesting read and you might even find some new bands to listen to along the way. So sit back, put on some headphones, crank up your favourite heavy metal album and open the pages of this book and read it from front to back and enjoy the hell out of it! Blair E. Gibson Author

FOREWORD Coming up with a band name is an exciting and important beginning to any new outfit, one that will follow you and represent what you are all about to thousands of people for many years, so it had better be a good one. Run with your first thought as a young person into metal and you may well end up being announced onto stage as Slaughtered Virgins of Azgaroth well into your thirties or forties, which could be a little embarrassing. The name, or moniker, doesn't necessarily have to limit what you write about either, be creative and let your mind flow into areas new and exciting, whatever you have decided to call yourselves. Indeed, many single word band names have limitless boundaries when it comes to song writing as there's generally less descriptive associations with their name. And don't forget the merchandise! Do you really expect people to walk around with a shirt print saying “Hairy Ass of God�? Which actually may not be so bad if it's written in a totally unreadable style, complete with spikes, horns and skulls. Ah yes, the logo. The name is just the beginning and once established, it's onto the band logo. Iron Maiden pretty much nailed it, with an easy to read and replicate classic, but not everyone had their eye on the ball and names will not be mentioned here by the guilty parties. It's not imperative that your logo is readable but it's helpful especially if someone is flitting through a bunch of CD's in a store looking for your latest offering but struggling to read anything in front of them, or more importantly, on a fly poster for a gig where people will simply wonder why there is a shape that looks like three mating spiders below all the other bands. And one final thing, have something to say about your band name - you will be asked about it so make sure you have a suitable, reasonably thought out response, which I suppose is where this books comes in. Enjoy! Cheers, Aaron Stainthorpe, My Dying Bride

18 SPEED TRANNY (Stoner metal) (Chicago, USA) (Formed in 1999) At the time we were called Mind Charger but we weren’t content with that. We were in Toronto to do a show at Club 360, and we got in a day early. A woman named Deanna who we had been in contact with through her website, had offered to show us around town. She took us to a bar called the Bovine Sex Club to see some punk bands. At the club we noticed this huge muscle bound woman/man, we weren't sure because it was dressed like a woman, but we started messing with our bass player, saying stuff like "it's checking you out man" and "it digs you" you know, just fucking around. Back at the hotel when we were all fucked up and high, the subject of that chick/dude came up again, and our bass player who at the time had a job moving heavy equipment with a semi, had blurted out in broken English (he's Polish) something about that chick/dude at the bar being an 18 Speed Tranny, and we almost pissed ourselves laughing. We thought it had a ring to it, so we made it our name. Ken Harlev (guitar/vocals)

35007 (Stoner rock) (Eindhoven, Netherlands) (Formed in 1994) We were first called A Loose Conspiracy, a loose group of people making loose music. The band was then simply called Loose and if you read that upside down it spells 35007. Sander Evers (drums)

ABHORRENCE (Death metal) (Helsinki, Finland) (Formed in 1989) I think our drummer, who was really active in the tape trading scene, came up with Abhorrence. I also think he came to the rehearsals with the name and a logo already done for it, so he sort of forced it down our throats. I mean, we couldn't change it because we already had a great logo and everything. We wanted a name that was obscure and sort of disgusting, to go along with our brand of death metal. I'm quite sure it was a case of him going through the dictionary, until Abhorrence came up, but I can't say for sure. Jukka Kolehmainen (vocals)

ACID KING (Stoner metal) (San Francisco, USA) (Formed in 1993) The band’s name was inspired by the book “Say You Love Satan”. It is based on the character of Ricky Kasso (nicknamed “the Acid King”) who committed a satanically motivated murder in Northport, New York during 1984. Lori S. (guitar/vocals)

ACROSS TUNDRAS (Progressive/Doom metal) (Denver, USA) (Formed in 2004) I was born and raised in South Dakota; where the winter winds blow long, hard, and cold across the Great Plains. The land was nicknamed "the Tundra" when it froze up for harsh 6-7 month long winters. Across Tundras is about a journey through the unknown, foreboding landscapes of this world and life. It also signifies moving forward no matter what gets thrown at you. Tanner Olson (guitars/vocals/mandolin)

ADAM BOMB (Glam metal) (New York) (Formed in 1984) I used to make bomb noises with my guitar when I was in this band TKO. A band called Movie Star opened for us and I became friends with guitar player Tommy Thayer who is the current lead guitarist in KISS. We lived next door to each other in Hollywood a few years later and he told me that I should call my band Adam Bomb. Adam Bomb (vocals/guitar)

AFTERSHOK (Heavy metal) (Pittsburgh, USA) (Formed in 1996) The name was chosen for two reasons. The first reason is the obvious association with something powerful, loud and earth-shaking; very appropriate for a metal band! The second is a bit more subtle; our former lead singer, Vic Hix, was a member of a fairly popular U.S. power metal band in the mid-to-late 80s called Shok Paris. So Aftershok was also a little play on words to let people know what Vic was up to "after" Shok Paris. George Mihalovich (guitar)

AGAINST NATURE (Doom metal/Post rock) (Baltimore, USA) (Formed in 2004) The name was the title of a Revelation song on the record Never Comes Silence, which was released on Hellhound Records in 1992. The song title itself came from J.K. Huysman's novel "A Rebours," translated "Against Nature" (or "Against the Grain"). The lyrics to the song "Against Nature" took a kind of viewpoint of the dangers of "man against nature," on a personal level. Twelve years later, in 2004, Steve Branagan, Bert Hall, and I decided to form a band, so we chose the name "Against Nature" because we wanted a connection to our past in Revelation, as well as a new start with a "new" band name. After all the years in between the song and the band, I've realized how much the two words "against nature" resonates in me. John Brenner (guitar/vocals)

AHAB (Funeral doom metal) (Stuttgart, Germany) (Formed in 2004) I decided to start a funeral doom band in early/mid-2004. The same thing with my band mate Daniel Droste, so two guys having the same idea. Daniel started out with the music but he didn't have a name for his one man project. At that time we really were excited about a whole new genre we didn't know until 2003. Besides the faible for that kind of music, I also started reading classics of literature and I happened to read Moby Dick at that time. Even before I had any music, I already developed the whole concept of my band around the name Ahab. So at the beginning there were actually two bands. One without a name and an untitled song "I" (later called "The Stream") and another one man show called AHAB; without music but with a concept. When I heard the song and Daniel heard the name and concept, we decided to join our creativity. That's how Ahab was found. Chris Hector (guitars)

AMERICAN DOG (Hard rock) (Columbus, USA) (Formed in 1999) The name came about because we were all working construction jobs at the time. All our work vans had our tools in them plus our band gear, and often drywall mud would end up on the marshalls. We'd show up to soundchecks still wearing our work clothes, so we felt like working dogs...and being just made sense to us. Michael Hannon (vocals/bass)

AMON RA (Traditional heavy metal) (Oviedo, Spain) (Formed in 2002) Amon Ra was an Egyptian pharaoh who personalized all the gods of Egyptian mythology in himself. But the name has a more deep means (in a literary way) the things that are hidden to the eyes, the obscure things not revealed at first look...the matters and significations of universal things only revealed to the ones who want to know and pass through an initiation stage... we thing that our music have a lot of this so we cach the name...and of course, because I think that the name sounds so powerful, giving a power portrait to the band.

Manfred (vocals/bass)

ANGLO JACKSON (Heavy metal) (Lessismore, USA) (Formed in 2005) In the incarnation of our band we didn't have a name. Some names were being shot around like, Doosh, Tre Quatro, and even Pudding. We were on break from a long practice and we were discussing with our drummer about his kids. He has two boys Jaxson and Maxx. Both are blond and have blue eyes. I asked how their names were spelled, seeing that we all come from old school punk backgrounds. I figured he tweaked the spelling of the names. Sure enough, when asked about Jaxsons name I said: “oh like Anglo Saxon but with a "J". We all looked at each other and knew that that was it. Four white guys playing the black man’s tunes in drop "C" tuning with two double neck bass and guitars. Paul (guitar/bass)

ANGTORIA (Gothic metal) (Sundsvall, Sweden) (Formed in 2001) The name originates as a title to a track on my brother Tommy’s old bands albums. The song was about a fictitious place, sort of like Nirvana, that they named Angtoria. My brother came up with the name by combining the only two women in our family at the time, our mother and our little sister. My mom’s name is Angnetha, and my sisters name is Victoria, so he combined the first half of our moms name "ANG" and the second half of our sisters name "TORIA", and came up with Angotira that way. So the meaning of the name to us in our family is of course very close to us. When my daughter was born nine years ago, we named her Angtoria as the middle name as well since it is very unique and means a lot to us. When we started the band and were thinking about names, Angtoria just felt completely natural for us to choose for several reasons. Mainly of course because it means a lot to us, and also because it’s completely unique and there is nothing else in the world named Angtoria. Chris Rehn (guitar/bass/keyboard/programming)

APOSTLE OF SOLITUDE (Doom metal) (Indianapolis, USA) (Formed in 2004) The name is based on the idea of an individual who goes through life essentially alone in terms of a steadfast devotion to those things they hold to be true and right; completely independent of society. Corey Webb (drums)

ARES KINGDOM (Thrash/Death metal) (Kansas City, USA) (Formed in 1996) The name is taken from the constellation Vulpecula, the fox, nestled between Aquila, the eagle, Cygnus, the swan, and Lyra, the lyre. The name reflected the band's focus on astronomical and related esoteric subjects. Chuck Keller (lead/rhythm guitar)

ARMORED SAINT (Traditional heavy metal) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1982) Our name was thought up by our drummer Gonzo Sandoval. We had all gone to see the movie Excalibur when it first came out. We were all quite high at the time and after the movie, the words came to him, Armored Saint. We hated it at first, but then we thought it had some kind of ring to it. Joey Vera (bass)

ARTILLERY (Thrash metal) (Copenhagen, Denmark) (Formed in 1982)

The name was taken from the Tank song “Heavy Artillery” back in 1982 and fits the thrash metal style we are playing perfectly. Michael Stützer (guitar)

ARUSHA ACCORD (Experimental/Progressive metal) (Reading, Berkshire, England) (Formed in 2005) We were looking for our name for a while; we wanted a historical reference or an event to use rather than something standard and very metal. A friend of ours (Alan) pointed us in the direction of a peace treaty signed in Africa to end civil war named the ARUSHA ACCORDS, there were 7 scrolls signed in total in a town called arusha Paul Green (vocals)

ASPHALT BALLET (Hard rock) (San Diego, USA) (Formed in 1988) I was on a bike riding over Laurel Canyon in Hollywood where I was in an accident. I had done an Asphalt Ballet with the bike and I danced down the street. Julius Ulrich (guitar)

ASTRAL DOORS (Heavy metal) (Borlange, Sweden) (Formed in 2002) We got a record deal before we had a band name, panicked and took the first name we could think of. One of the first songs we wrote was called "Far beyond the Astral Doors". So Astral Doors it was and now we're stuck with it. Astral Doors

ASTRAL SLEEP (Doom metal) (Tampere, Finland) (Formed in 2004)

The term "Astral Sleep" was first used by Tiamat as their 1991 album title. The title fit perfectly to our vision of the band, since our greatest inspiration was dreams and the universe. Even as being a doom band, our musical influences know no limits and the line of drama in our songs does not have any barriers, just like the universe and the events in dreams act in mysterious ways and explore all the aspects of astral. Markus (guitar/vocals)

ATHIEST (Death metal) (Sarasota, USA) (Formed in 1984) Our band was originally called Ravage, but after we had the name for a year or so, we saw that there was another band with the same name and so we created the acronym for R.A.V.A.G.E.: "Raging Atheists Vowing a Gory End”. After a while, we soon shed the rest of that madness and stuck with just Atheist...while not everyone in the band was an Atheist per se, it was a righteous name for a metal band! Kelly Shaefer (vocals/guitar)

ATLAS MOTH (Sludge/Stoner metal) (Chicago, USA) (Formed in 2007) There is this documentary about a local power metal band called Driver 23 which has a sequel called the Atlas Moth. In the sequel, one of the band members is actually breeding atlas moths in his basement. I had never heard of the existence of giant moths prior to the documentary, so I started doing some research about them. I thought they looked rad and had an almost prehistoric nature to them. Then as we were searching for a name, the idea of not a typical metal sounding band name came up. I mentioned naming the band "the Atlas Moth" being as we are influenced by a lot of psych and it sorta reminded me of the evil twin of Iron Butterfly. We all dug it and it stuck! Stavros (guitar/vocals)

ATOMKRAFT (NWOBHM/Speed metal) (Newcastle, England) (Formed in 1979) The name is German, meaning “nuclear power”. One of the original members came back from a trip to Germany from a visit to his father in the late 70s and at the time we were called Moral Fibre and kind of a punk outfit, we were all anti-Nuclear at the time as that was the old Green Earth kinda shit going on with the youth. He brought the band back gifts in the form of Anti-Nuclear badges, a red face on a yellow background. Several were Swedish and Dutch and 2 badges (buttons) were German, they said

ATOMKRAFT, NEIN DANKE and we decided ATOMKRAFT was a cool name for a metal outfit so we adopted it! Tony Dolan (vocals/bass)

AUTOGRAPH (Hard rock) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1983) Autograph was not a band when we were asked by David Lee Roth to open up for Van Halen's 1984 tour. We were just guys who jammed together on the weekends. But when Andy Johns, who had co-engineered Led Zeppelin with his brother Glynn, came down to one of our jams he loved the material so much he asked us to go into Gower Studios in Hollywood to cut a demo of five songs. Our obligations with the other bands we were playing in didn't interfere so we decided to go for it. Upon completing the demo, Keni Richards the drummer, played it for David after their morning jog which they did on Sunset Blvd. every day at 8:30 AM. Dave loved the songs and asked Keni if we would like to open for them on the upcoming tour. Keni said he wasn't sure because of our other commitments. That weekend when we got together again Keni asked if we could make it work. We all thought about it and decided we could go out for about 3 months without it affecting out prior commitments. While we were driving from L.A. to Jacksonville, USA each of us wrote down 5 names on a piece of paper that we thought would fit the "band". Then we passed each piece around and crossed out the ones we didn't like. At the end of this the only name that wasn't crossed out was Autograph. It was decided at this time that would be our name for this tour. It fit because we had a signature sound that was different than most bands that were coming out of L.A. at the time. Little did we know we would be approached by so many record labels on the road it would become difficult not to sign a deal with one of them. We ended up quitting our other bands and signed with RCA. Steve Lynch (guitars)

AYREON (Progressive metal) (Netherlands) (Formed in 1995) Originally I called the minstrel of the first Ayreon album “Aries,” because he was an orphan and they named him after his star sign. But then, when Ian Parry had to sing “A-RI-IES,” he told me it was pronounced differently (it should be “A-RIES”). I had to change the name because of the syllables for it had to fit the meter of the song. I wanted the name to sound old fashioned because of the medieval influences in the music, so I used the old-English sounding “AY” (Aylesbury, Ayshire). But I also wanted it to sound modern because of the futuristic parts (2084) so I used “ON” (electron, neutron, cyclotron etc.) Arjen Lucassen (vocals/guitars/bass/synth/keyboards)

BABYLON A.D. (Hard rock) (San Francisco, USA) (Formed in 1988) The band’s name was taken from biblical type references. Revelations; Babylon the great has fallen‌ We put the A.D. after Babylon because we felt we are getting closer to the end of days. (After Christ-After death). Derek Davis (vocals)

BABYLON MYSTERY ORCHESTRA (Symphonic gothic metal) (Greenville, USA) (Formed in 2002) As I was recording what would be the first CD, Divine Right of Kings, I really did not have a name yet. That was 2001 and I was really into the music of Therion and I liked the way they mixed symphonic instruments with heavy metal. Initially I thought I would like to do that too so I was toying with calling the project Orchestra or Orkestra. The material I was writing for the CD was a conceptual theme about the Biblical "Mystery Babylon the Great" from the book of the Revelation. So somewhere along the line I put the words Mystery Babylon Orchestra together. It sounded okay but when I rearranged them to "Babylon Mystery Orchestra" I totally loved the sound of it and I also felt confident that it was a name no one else in the world would have ever thought about using. Sidney Allen Johnson (all instruments)

BAL-SAGOTH (Symphonic black metal) (Yorkshire, England) (Formed in 1989)

I chose the name for my band because I've always been a huge fan of the work of Robert E. Howard, the fantasy author who created such legendary characters as Conan, Kull, Solomon Kane, etc. Ever since I read Howard's story "The Gods of Bal-Sagoth" many years ago, the name captivated me with its arcane and mysterious nature. It's an old story, first published back in 1931 in the famous American pulp magazine "Weird Tales," and it's still one of my all-time favourites. The works of great authors such as Robert E. Howard, H.P. Lovecraft and Clark Ashton Smith have always been a big inspiration for my lyrics too, so right from the very beginning when I first came up with the idea for the band, I knew I had to call it "Bal-Sagoth", as a tribute to the enduring pulp fantasy of the 1930s. Byron Roberts (vocals)

BANGALORE CHOIR (Hard rock) (Hollywood, USA) (Formed in 1991) Dave Reece, the singer, had a brother in the army. He was a sergeant and they wanted a name that meant "explosive vocals" and his brother suggested we use the term "Bangalore". To the best of my knowledge I believe a “bangalore” is a device used to clear a path for tanks and things. They are basically pipe bombs that can be attached one end to the next, so you can make as long a line of them as you want. World War II device I believe. A Bangalore torpedo is an explosive charge placed on the end of a long, extendible tube. It is used by combat engineers to clear obstacles that would otherwise require them to approach directly, possibly under fire. It is sometimes colloquially referred to as a Bangalore mine, bangers or simply a Bangalore. It has been estimated that the modern Bangalore torpedo is effective for clearing a path through wire and mines up to 15 meters long and 1 meter wide. Curt Mitchell (guitars)

BARREN CROSS (Christian metal) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1983) The members of the band are Christians and we wanted to reflect that somehow. The resurrection is the central part of Christianity, so an empty cross or "barren cross" is what we settled on. Ray Parris (guitars)

BATILLUS (Blackened doom metal) (New York City, USA) (Formed in 2008) I had been reading a book at the time of our first few rehearsals (just the bass player and myself) called "A Measure of All Things”. In the chapter on volume, there was a paragraph

about big oil tankers called ULCCs, Ultra Large Crude Carriers. The largest of all was apparently the Knock Nevis, weighing 647,955 metric tons. There was no photo in the book, though, so I went to the web and learned that although the Knock Nevis was the largest in size, there was another ship called Batillus whose maximum capacity was bigger. I think I only had to see one photo of the Batillus before knowing that we had found our name. And it wasn't long after that before we found our drummer, too. Greg Peterson (guitar)

BATON ROUGE (Hard rock) (Baton Rouge, USA) (Formed in 1986) Kelly and I formed Baton Rouge in the mid-80s under the name Voices. We moved to L.A. and started working with several different producers. We landed a deal on Atlantic Records where Ahmet Ertegun, the CEO at the time, said in his trademark voice, "You should change your name to something about your heritage, about gumbo or change your name to Baton Rouge". We thought about it for a day and took his suggestion like it was an offer we couldn't refuse. Lance Bulen (vocals)

BATTLELORE (Symphonic epic metal) (Lappeenranta, Finland) (Formed in 1999) In the very beginning when I founded this band, we used the name Wyvern and one of our songs was titled as “Battlelore”. I can't remember how I came up with this title and as far as I know, it doesn't mean anything. It is just kind of an adaption from the word “folklore” changed into a more powerful or even epic shape. Tommi Havo, our guitarist at the time suggested that maybe we could use this cool song title "Battlelore" as our band's name, because we've just heard that the name Wyvern was already taken by some other band. We all agreed and since then we've been Battlelore. The song which was first titled as Battlelore was changed to “Swordmaster,” one of the songs from our first album. Jyri Vahvanen (guitar)

BEAUTIFUL CREATURES (Hard rock) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1999) The name is all about the fans. They are the Beautiful Creatures. The tattooed misfits, the pierced freaks, the outcasts, the groupies, whatever you want to call them. We call them “beautiful”. Kenny Kweens (bass)

BEEHOOVER (Stoner metal) (Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany) (Formed in 2003) I studied in England for a while and played music with some guys there. One day one of them told me about a television programme where someone was totally covered in bees. To get rid of them they used a vacuum cleaner, which would be a Hoover for bees, a beehoover. We both decided to name our band after that but it never happened. When I returned to Germany and met Ingmar (bass) the name Beehoover was still in my head. It was a quick decision. Most band names push you in a certain direction. You can imagine the music a band called "Blood Christ Suffer Death" would make as well as "Dreadlock Boys". Our band name doesn't tell you anything about the style we play, but there is a story behind it. The disadvantage is that people spell it wrong all over the place. Behoover, Beehoover, Behover or even Bethoven. Claus-Peter Hamisch (drums, vocals)

BEGGARS AND THIEVES (Hard rock) (New York City, USA) (Formed in 1991) The song was written first. I think it was like the third or fourth song written for the first record. It was my 30th birthday party at Umberto’s restaurant in Little Italy where Joey Gallo got wacked and Andrew Loog Oldham was at my table celebrating my birthday, and someone mentioned the song “Beggars & Thieves”. It was Andrew who managed the Stones he was the guy who would lock Keith & Mick in a room and not let them out till they had a song. He says you should call your band Beggars & Thieves I looked at Ronnie, he at me and we said that's it the name of the band is called Beggars & Thieves. Louie Merlino (vocals)

BESATT (Black metal) (Bytom, Poland) (Formed in 1991) Besatt is a word taken from Swedish language and it means “possession”. When we had been choosing the name for our band, we thought that this word would describe the best music which we wanted to play. Beldaroh (vocals/bass)

BIBLICAL PROOF OF UFOS (Stoner metal) (Cleveland, USA) (Formed in 1995) Biblical Proof of UFOs was a phrase we harvested from an advertisement for a kook-lit pamphlet we saw in the shady, back-page classifieds of the Weekly World News. It's a shame that rag had to die, the nuttery on display there was a bottomless source of amusement and inspiration; we got a couple of song titles out of those bullshit psychic ads, too. We liked the band name for the way it rolled off the tongue, for its meter, and for its length; back then, a one-word name referenced to the construction industry; Tar, Helmet, Arcwelder; was practically a requirement, and we wanted to flip the bird at that phenomenon. In fact, we got advised by well-meaning friends that nobody would remember a name so long. Turned out few people forgot it, so we never regretted adopting it. Michael Peffer (vocals/drums)

BLACK BONED ANGEL (Drone/Doom metal) (Lower Hutt, Wellington, New Zealand) (Formed in 2001) I never thought anybody would get to hear Black Boned Angel. It wasn’t really on my mind to get the music out into the public eye...I was doing it because it was there to be done. I stole the name from a Godflesh song. I like Godflesh. If I had known anybody was going to listen, I would have tried a bit harder. Campbell Neale (vocals/guitar)

BLACK FUNERAL (Black metal) (Indianapolis, USA) (Formed in 1993) Black Funeral was chosen for the band name in 1993. I thought this would be an ideal title for my band at the time as I was deeply into vampirism and the cult of Varcolaci (an initiatory practice of dream/astral vampirism), black being the veil and funeral being the path. The name worked as I remembered the Mercyful Fate song, however it was not chosen simply from that! Michael Ford (vocals/bass/machine sounds)

BLACK MAJESTY (Power metal) (Melbourne, Australia) (Formed in 2001) The idea comes from Australia's ties with the British Monarchy/Majesty. We included “Black” at the beginning for “power”. We're also into things “majestic” (eg. lions) so the title suited what we stand for. Stevie Janevski (guitars)

BLACK PYRAMID (Psychedelic stoner/Doom metal) (Northampton, USA) (Formed in 2007) We had shows lined up and everything, we had a demo and everything, but we didn't yet have a name. I was thinking the Eye In the Pyramid was a good name, but it seemed everyone had names like that (Teeth of the Hydra, Lair of the Minotaur) with the noun modified by the prepositional phrase (not like everyone doesn't have a name with the adjective "black" in it either but...) So someone suggested, why not just use the name Pyramid? Of course a bunch of bands were called Pyramid, but Black Pyramid seemed to describe us better, because of the psychedelic, mild altering aspect of our sound and the type of LSD-25 with the same moniker, plus the monolithic nature of a pyramid also referenced our sound. Also, the black pyramid imagery also refers to a famous UFO incident in Europe. So when that was suggested, it just stuck. Andy Beresky (guitar/vocals)

BLACK SHAPE OF NEXUS (Drone/Doom metal) (Mannheim, Germany) (Formed in 2005) The name is taken from a song title of England band Canvas. We like both: this band and the title of this song. Furthermore we thought the name fits our music quite well. As someone said: “Nexus,” the centre of something, or a connection, as any dictionary will tell you. Appropriately for Black Shape of Nexus, as the suffocating heaviness of their music functions either way; they can be the centre of your worst nightmares or the connection to all those dark places where you don’t ever want to go or both. Jan Wolf (electronics/keyboards)

BLACK SPACE RIDERS (Psychedelic space rock) (Odenburg, Germany) (Formed in 2008) Like many good band names it means everything and nothing at all. We have a "total vision" behind our band concerning music, overall concept, band name, lyrics, sound, and cover. We play heavy, psychedelic, hypnotic, spaced-out rock with repetitive, cartoonish, cool lyrics that always circle around a central topic: black infinite space. So we were looking for a band name which summarized all of that. JE (vocals/guitar)

BLACKBOARD JUNGLE (Hard rock) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1990) We were named by legendary producer Kim Fowley who also gave Joan Jett her name as well as her band the Runaways. Blackboard Jungle was one of the original rock and roll rebellion movies. It used Bill Haley’s “Rock Around the Clock”. We felt the movie represented the past as well as the future. Britt Pennella (bass)

BLIND DOG (Stoner metal) (Halmstad, Sweden) (Formed in 1995) The very dull story of how we came up the name Blind Dog is simply that I opened up a magazine which contained a story about dogs doing tricks. The article had one really nice looking picture of a dog that was blindfolded and was tight rope walking, on two parallel ropes. “Look at this; what about Blind Dog?” I said. The others agreed that it was a good enough name to have for a while. Tobias Nilsson (bass/vocals)

BLINDED COLONY (Death metal) (Karlshamn, Sweden) (Formed in 2000)

When we signed a deal with Scarlet Records we found out that there was another band called Stigmata so we had to change it. Basically, "Blinded Colony" stands that certain people of the world choose to live their lives in a religiously "Blinded Colony". They are blinded by the teachings of their religion, and they don’t really learn anything nor have a real life. Tobias Olsson (bass)

BLOODHORSE (Doom metal) (Boston, USA) (Formed in 2005) A promoter we were friends with booked us on a show before we had a name, and basically gave us two days to give him one for the flyer. We threw together a list of names and ran it by some friends that were at our practice space. They all responded to Bloodhorse, so that was that. In hindsight, I think it was more that the other names were incredibly horrible more so than Bloodhorse being any good, but four years later it is what it is. The name itself comes from our drummer's old car. It was this '84 Ford Bronco II that he had modified over the years to basically be a monster truck (the tires were so big it wasn't street legal). Eventually we started calling it the Bloodhorse because of the bronco emblem and how you could basically run over anything with this truck. And that is why we are now one of about 100 bands with “horse” in their name. Adam Wentworth (guitars/vocals)

BLOWBACK (Doom/Stoner metal) (Orebro, Sweden) (Formed in 2004) Well, the name has two sides; one of them is that we play 70s rock and the music blows back in time if you know what I mean. And the other side of the name is that it’s a way to smoke weed. A man and a woman exchange the smoke in their mouths while kissing. Henrike (drums)

BONFIRE (Hard rock) (Ingolstadt, Germany) (Formed in 1972) We were only looking for a name that sounded very positive, so we looked it up in a dictionary and found that name. Years later I found a possible reason for that choice. Through many years we've always played the Steppenwolf song "Born to Be Wild" in our set as an encore. One day I

read through the booklet and saw that the name of the one who has written this song was "Mark Bonfire," so we found a reason and a good story for the name of our band. Claus Lessmann (vocals/backing vocals/acoustic guitars/bass/rhythm guitars)

BORGO PASS (Southern/Sludge metal) (Baldwin, USA) (Formed in mid-90s) The Borgo Pass is the passageway to Dracula’s castle. It’s still in existence today. We wanted a name that nobody else would use so there would be no B.S. We used to be called Slow Painful Death but some of us thought it was a negative image of the band. Joe Wood, the drummer, actually found the name while reading a book about Vlad Tepes (Dracula). Tom Crane (guitar)

BORKNAGAR (Black metal) (Bergen, Norway) (Formed in 1995) Borknagar is a fictional name. My intention was to have a band name that only represented the band to avoid any musical limitations due to the band name for future musical endeavours. I was inspired a Scottish fairytale about a mountain called Lochnagar. I did my own twist (in a northern direction) inspired by Bork, which is the name of an evil king in the Swedish movie Ronja Røverdatter, based on the book by the same name written by Astrid Lindgren. This book meant a lot to me when I was a kid and is the best book ever written for kids. Add these up and we have Borknagar, a name which has no literal meaning but still has a northern flavour. Øystein (guitars)

BRAND NEW SIN (Southern hard rock) (Syracuse, USA) (Formed in 2002) Before Brand New Sin, Chuck (bass) and I had a band that I named "Godbelow". I got that name from a Danzig song called "Twist of Cain". Godbelow eventually evolved into what became Brand New Sin. I remember kicking around a shitload of names for way too long before I came up with "Brand New Sin". At that time I was deep into Danzig 4 and the first song on the record is called "Brand New God". I didn't want to use the complete title although I thought it would be perfect considering our old name, so I came up with "sin" which really inspired the concept of using the pig for the logo. Kris Wiechmann (vocals/guitar)

BRIGHTON ROCK (Glam metal) (Niagara Falls, Canada) (Formed in 1982) The original name of the group was "Heart Attack" but because there was already a band with that name there needed to be a change. Singer Gerry McGhee was reading a book by Graham Greene entitled "Brighton Rock" as the band was traveling to a gig through Brighton, Ontario. He mentioned the coincidence and also the possibility of using that name. The rest of the band thought it was cool. The record company did a name search and said it was okay to use. Greg Fraser (guitar)

BRITNY FOX (Hard rock) (Philadelphia, USA) (Formed in 1985) Our first singer claimed he had someone in a Welsh family tree from the 16-1700s named Britny Fox. I, along with the others, always had my doubts. He always left tickets for "family" in different parts of the England, but no one ever came. He was a strange guy, and I think my original suspicions of bullshit were correct. Just a cool name he thought of. Dean Davidson (vocals/rhythm guitars)

BROKEN TEETH (Hard rock) (Austin, USA) (Formed in 1999) When forming a new band, the name can be as important as the music, or not at all. If the band is using just the main songwriter’s name, it’s not truly a band unless the persons name is Wicked Jester, or something crazy like that. That’s not too often that the planets align, and your parents or whoever is naming you comes up with that, unless your dad is Frank Zappa. I always thought that his daughter’s name, Moon Unit, was a killer band name. I was forming and writing songs for a new project in 1999, when I realized that naming the new band was gonna be a feat. Describing the music with a phrase, something shocking, or dull or dumb enough to have some comical girth. The idea of my band was to have an emotional outpour when the music hits the ears and the room. The music has anything and everything to do with bar-room drama, bad girls and bad boys on the prowl, smoky rooms, but at the same time, arena rock, the thrill of the intro of a band as it walks onto the stage with thunderous three chord rock n roll. And this name will have nothing to do with pop/candy coated Disney, or 90s rock or metal dressed up like a rated "G" (for everyone) spoonfed rock that the TV or radio calls rock n roll. This name would be for authentic old school, Motorhead, AC/DC, Judas Priest fans, without the high ticket prices or clothes from the mall. The name I came up with definitely scares enough, is silly enough, and packs a punch, and literally means something that happens, unfortunately, when the knuckle draggers get the whiff of loud music and a few beers in them. I believe I chose well.

Jason McMaster (vocals)

BROTHER FIRETRIBE (Classic metal) (Finland) (Formed in 2002) Our name was born during one hell of a party back when we were just starting to write songs. A mutual friend of ours had passed out in the wee hours of morning but had a sudden resurrection with a beer bottle still firmly in his hand. He got up and announced "VELI PALOHEIMO is BROTHER FIRETRIBE" and passed out again. Veli Paloheimo was a Finnish tennis professional back in the 80s and if you translate his name in English, what you get is Brother Firetribe. Brother being Veli, Fire being Palo and Tribe being Heimo. God knows what our friend was thinking and how he came up with that and why, but the name stuck, we thought it was too great to waste. Pekka Ansio Heino (vocals)

BROUGHT LOW (Heavy metal) (Brooklyn, USA) (Formed in 1999) I had the name before I had the band. I had been reading “Go Tell It On The Mountain� by James Baldwin and one of its reoccurring motifs is about the protagonists' father, who is a priest, being "brought low by the Lord" for his sins, basically fucking all the women in his church. I grew up in a pretty religious house and have always felt very comfortable with and attracted to religious imagery and I really liked this idea of being taken down a few pegs by God for being a schmuck and just the sound of it; "He was brought low," it sounded really deep and hard and ominous. After my first band; one I had placed a lot of hopes on; fell apart, I felt pretty low and thought the name sort of encapsulated where I was at and I also liked that it harkened back to the blues and American roots music, all of which has a lot of religious overtones. And now that I think of it, I also dug that it started with "B" which meant we'd be in the same bin at the record store with the Band and Black Sabbath and Black Flag. And my name starts with B. So basically I had the name and knew this was going to be my new band thing and it was going to be bluesy and rootsy but also rocking and it was going to be my thing. Ben Smith (vocals/guitar)

BRUTAL TRUTH (Grindcore) (New York City, USA) (Formed in 1990) I christened the band way back when we formed in 1990 to quickly sum up what the band was about musically and lyrically. The music was quite brutal and the lyrics were factually-based punk rock-style protest. Also, it's easy to say (except in Japan), it almost rhymes, and the fact that both words are of similar length letter-wise made it easy to design a logo. Danny Lilker (bass/backing vocals)

BURNING WITCH (Doom metal) (Seattle, USA) (Formed in 1995) Named after the sound of suffering. Stephen O’Malley (guitars)

CARDINALE (Sludge/Doom metal) (Austin, USA) (Formed in 2005) It started off with me starting a band called Asp. I was on this kick with bands named after animals. So with that in mind I came up with Cardinal without the "E”. I work in a record store so I did some research to see if there was a band by that name and I found out that there was. Finding that out was a bummer but I just so happened to be watching whatever season of American Idol was on and a contestant named Lisa Cardinale was on the TV. I saw that it was cardinal just spelt with an "E" on the end so I put the "E" on the end of Cardinal and it became Cardinale, still pronounced cardinal though. Many people think it’s pronounced kard-nahl. Keith Palumbo (drums)

CARNIFEX (Deathcore) (San Diego, USA) (Formed in 2005) When we first started we wanted to write the most brutal and epic music possible. We also wanted our name to portray all that. We were throwing out names but nothing stuck until a friend of the band remembered the word that she and I saw on a piece of paper the other day. It was a bunch of words and their definitions and the one that stuck out when we saw it was Carnifex. Carnifex was the public executioner for Rome that put only the slaves and foreigners to death. That is brutal. We Googled the name and nothing came up. To me it represents our music perfectly. Shawn Cameron (drums)

CASTLE WELL (Heavy metal) (North Rhine, Germany) (Formed in 1985) In 1985, we founded our band and we thought we had a cool name: Bloody Mary, but another band with a record deal also had the same name, so we changed the name in 1986 to Airwolf, but also another band with a record deal had this name and we had to change the name. But we never wanted to change the name a third time, so we created a name which would never exist with another band. We changed it in 1989 to Castle Well. That’s the name of our hometown. In German, the name for our hometown is called "Schlossborn". For example: "Schloss" is the same name in German like "Kastell," in English you say "Castle" and "Well" is in German the name "Born" or "Quell". You see Quell the same like Well in Old English so we created the name Castle Well. Frank Schrange (guitars)

CAULDRON (Traditional heavy metal) (Toronto, Canada) (Formed in 2006) I was walking around the stock room at work two days after Goat Horn broke up with the name Midnite Mass in my head, but then somehow Cauldron popped into my brain and I liked it more. It was simple, heavy and easy to remember and pronounce. Perfect. It reminded me of the simpleness of the name Carcass which I always really liked, so that was it! Jason Decay (bass/vocals)

CELLADOR (Power metal) (Omaha, USA) (Formed in 2003) I came up with the band name on a whim in the bands early, early days, around early 2003. We had recorded our first demos around this time and were posting them online on a now defunct music website called We were having trouble deciding on a name, and up to this point were considering the band name Apostate and even booked some first gigs under this name. But as I was setting up our band account one day, perhaps out of selfishness I decided to name the account Cellador after a J.R.R. Tolkien reference in that he believed the combination of the words "cellar" and "door" were the most beautiful combination found in the English language (as mentioned in one of his essays from the 50s). I had come across this strange Tolkien reference online somewhere and thought the background of it, as well as the name itself, sounded very power metalish, unique, and fitting for us. I can be weird about linguistics sometimes and this is an example. I told the band later that same day. At first they weren't digging it but quickly they became accustomed to it. Since then it’s been my band's name. Chris Petersen (guitars/bass/vocals)

CENTURIONS GHOST (Doom/Sludge metal) (London, England) (Formed in 2001) It comes from a ghost story from the city of York in the north of England. The story is about a legion of Roman soldiers which disappeared only ever to be seen again haunting the streets and cellars of York. They are known as the “Doomed Leigion”. We were gonna call the band Doomed Leigion but thought it would be more original and true to the story to call the band Centurions Ghost. In addition to this there is a fine porter ale which shares the same name. Richard Whittaker (bass)

CHAOS DIVINE (Progressive metal) (Perth, Western Australia) (Formed in 2005) The band was originally called Devoid. When myself and Ben our new drummer joined the band the music had a more complex and more melodic feel to it so we felt it a necessity that our name need change to represent our new musical feel. While I myself came up with a number of names that were kind of medieval in origin, Simon and/or Ryan came up with the name ChaosShifter, I wasn't a big fan but I did like having chaos in the name so I suggested Divine Chaos. We thought this to be a little too standard so we changed it to Chaos Divine which worked well, at times our music is chaotic and brutal but also at times melodic and beautiful, music is divine and soothes even the savage beast many of which are metal heads! David Anderton (vocals)

CHARON (Gothic metal) (Raahe, Finland) (Formed in 1992) As a teenager we had many not so flattering names including various ways to have fun with human bodies but those names didn't sum up the essence we had as a driving force behind us. I was stumbling through mythology and the occult to find those few but precious gems of knowledge and got caught in La Divina Commedia. As a ferryman for the dead in Mycenaen mythology, Charon guided lost souls to meet their closure and to me it summarized the transformation of human being (mind, body and soul) through Karmic retribution. So Charon was a suitable avatar for us and after that I've always kept two coins in my pocket for that last and grim cab ride. Teemu Hautam채ki (bass/vocals)

CHUCK NORRIS EXPERIMENT (Hard rock) (Goteborg, Sweden) (Formed in 2004) There is a common misunderstanding that we took our band name after Chuck Norris. If we wanted to choose a name from someone involved in karate we would not have chosen a dude from America, we would had gone to the source of karate (China) and we would had chosen the coolest, best and most skilled performer there. And then I guess we would have been called the Bruce Lee Experiment or similar.

Our name is a tribute to the American blues legend Charles "Chuck" Norris, who released one of the greatest blues albums in the world in 1979. The album is called the Los Angeles Flash and parts of it were actually recorded in our hometown of Gรถteborg. Chuck Norris played with legends like the Platters and Dinah USA. Our name is a simple "thank you" to a great guitarist and an amazing musician. Chuck Ransom (vocals)

CIANIDE (Death/Doom metal) (Chicago, USA) (Formed in 1988) Cianide was taken from the Sacrifice song off of their second album Forward to Termination. The "Y" was changed to "I" to separate ourselves from the gazillion other "Cyanide" bands that were and I'm sure still are out there. A strange coincidence that Venom actually spelled Cianide the way we spell it on their lyric sheet for the song "Rip Ride" from their At War With Satan album. Mike Perun (bass/vocals)

CIRCLE II CIRCLE (Power metal) (Tampa, USA) (Formed in 2001) The name came from the fact that I came from the "circle" of the Savatage family, but remained working with Jon Oliva and Chris Caffery on the first album, Watching in Silence. So it was like a circle within a circle so to speak. And since I basically went from one circle of musical family to another while still keeping those elements from the original Savatage "circle", that's how we came up with our name. Zak Stevens (vocals)

COALESCE (Metalcore) (Kansas City, USA) (Formed in 1994) Coalesce went a long time without a name. We started playing together in January 1994, and our first show was without a singer and without a moniker in April or May of that year. Now that I think back on it, we never really felt the pressure to come up with a name in those early days. Right before Sean Ingram came into the band we had sort of decided on the name Breach. I liked the sound of the word and it captured a bit of the direction I wanted to go with the group: an attempt at rupturing or tearing apart everything around me with our recordings and live shows. I remember Stacy Hilt was sort of indifferent about the name but not antagonistic to it;

Jim Redd wasn’t totally sold on it but was starting to get a bit behind it; and I thought it was the best option we had come up with at the time. A month or so after Sean had joined the band; we discovered that another group had already claimed that name. That was when the name wars began. Sean would think up a name once every few days and Jim would shoot it down. Jim would think up a name once every week or so and Sean would shoot it down. It was a real microcosm of what would come over the next year or two. One day in the summer of 1994 Sean called me on the phone. I had just moved to USA to finish my senior year of high school that coming fall and the rest of the band still lived in Kansas City, so we couldn’t have band meetings that often; a lot of things had to be done over the phone. I eventually got tired of hearing about the war over the name, so I told Sean during that conversation, “Look, I’m going to let you go and spend the next half hour running through names in my dictionary. When I’m done, I’m going to call you back with some choices. You’re going to pick one and then I’m going to make Jim pick one. If you two can’t agree, then I’m going to unilaterally pick the name that neither of you want and we’re going to move on”. I called Sean back and the first name I pitched was “Coalesce”. He loved it right away. Through some act of miracle (and a little finesse in my pitch) Jim agreed to the name as well, so we went with it. The irony of the name ran deep: there was no real unity in coalesce on a personal level (we were four totally different people with four totally different goals musically), the signification of “coalesce” was completely opposite that of Breach (and hence that original meaning I had intended between the band’s name and music was lost), and coalesce went on to get the wrap as a sort of anti-ideological band (that is, we looked nothing like what fit into the coalitions that were so prominent in the 90s punk hardcore underground). Jes Steineger (guitar)

COFFIN TEXTS (Death metal) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1994) I was in a band called Entety (Entity but with an “e”) and I was deeply into the paranormal and read a lot of books on the subject besides experiencing a lot of activity in the house I was living in at the time. Entety broke up and I was forming another band and decided to write all the lyrics myself about the paranormal and the afterlife. A good friend of mine by the name of Carlos mentioned that name to me and everything fit together as a concept name. Coffin Texts was what the priest would carve incantations on the limestone coffins so that the soul of the deceased would be able to speak the words and enter bliss eternally. All of my songs pertain the astral world, redemption and earthbound spirits. I guess everyone wants to reach bliss eventually. Robert Cardenas (vocals/bass)

COLDSPELL (Melodic heavy metal) (Kiruna, Sweden) (Formed in 2005)

My wife works at the Ice hotel in Jukkasjärvi, Sweden and she came up with Coldspell, it’s an abbreviation for a period when the "cold" comes very suddenly. It’s a very suitable name for us since we live up here in the land of ice and snow. Michael Larsson (guitars/backing vocals)

COMPANY OF WOLVES (Hard rock) (New York, USA) (Formed in 1989) Company of Wolves came from a term I had heard in my youth, I'm sure the same source which inspired the 1984 film. A lot of my influences came from my British heritage and I don't remember whether it was something I might have heard one of my elders say, but it was in my memory banks. If you were in the company of wolves you were in dangerous hands; running with the wrong folks, bad influences. I had an idea for a song called "Company of Wolves," which I collaborated on with Jeff Kent around the first year I moved to NYC. At that time I lived in a modest little place with bars on the windows just below Harlem on the west side, and I would see this pretty young girl moving about this neighbourhood among the whores and junkies, and used to imagine what a relationship would be like with someone who only knew that life. So that was what the song was about. We recorded a demo version with fake drums but Jeff wanted to bring in this guitarist named Steve Conte to do the guitar work. So that's how Steve and I met. We started as the Kyf Brewer Band. The first recordings are under that name, but after recruiting John and Frankie we liked the feel of a band name more, so we became Company of Wolves, after one of the very few songs we had worked on together at the time. Kyf Brewer (vocals/keyboard/harmonica)

CONEY HATCH (Hard rock) (Toronto, Canada) (Formed in 1982) Back in 1979/80, my parents took me on a trip to their hometown of Muswell Hill near London, England. I spent a week or so seeing the sights and visiting friends and family. During the visit my mom showed me a large building surrounded by a high brick wall and on the other side were beautifully landscaped grounds with trees, chirping birds, etc. She told me as a small school girl she was terrified of walking by this building because it was Colney Hatch…“the loonie bin”. Well I loved the name and the concept of naming a band after a psychiatric hospital so I Americanized the spelling by taking out the “L” to avoid mispronunciation and came back to Toronto with a name and started looking for members. Andy Curran (vocals/bass)

CORPUS MORTALE (Death eath metal) (Copenhagen, Denmark) (Formed in 1993) The name of the band was initially "Rigor Mortis" but it so soon on became clear that about a thousand bands had that name already so we had to come up with something else. Ulrik Pedersen (who left the band within the first year of existence) came up with "Corpus Mortale". Over the years we've discussed whether it's grammatically correct and since none of us know knows any Latin we never found out. But the direct meaning is something like "mortal corpse". Reminding us how fragile life is. In the old days the name was just a name that loo looked ked cool in print. We didn't really follow the name lyrically as we had some stu stupid satanic shit going on (we were 15-18 18 years old) old but since our debut album all lyrics are following the same style which is real real-life life murderers of any kind. I don't mention names like Macabre for instance but sometimes you can't miss who I'm referring to. Martin Rosendahl (vocals/bass)

toner rock) (Brugge, Belgium) (Formed in 1996) COWBOYS & ALIENS (Stoner 1994/95 that our guitar player John P. went to the USA and I think itt must have been around 1994/ read somewhere one of those space pulp mags and the ttitle itle of one of the stories was “Cowboys “ & Aliens”. Kris Vandekerckhove (bass/backing vocals)

Canada) (Formed in 2002) CRASH KELLY (Hard rock)) (Toronto, Canada I named the band after my uncle Orville "Crash" Kelly...he was a pro hockey player who played in the AHL HL and the EHL in the 1950 1950s...he was a killer on the ice, but a true Irish gentleman gentlema off the ice. Uncle Orv passed away a few years ago, and the n name ame is a tribute to his legacy. He was, along with my other ther u uncle Leo "Bud" Kelly, my father's ather's hero (Des Kelly, who also played in the EHL). In calling the band Crash Kelly, I was trying to honour the memories of Orv and Bud, as well as show respect to my father Des, who is my hero. Sean Kelly (guitar/vocals)

CRAZY LIXX (Heavy rock) (Malmo Malmo, Sweden) (Formed in 2002) When I was a kid I got a plastic Japanese toy guitar for Christmas one year. It played rockin' riffs when you pushed different buttons on it. The guitar was my first instrument and looking back on it that guitar was what started my interest in music. Th The e name of the toy was Hot Lixx!

Problem is that the guitar itself was thrown away along with all my other junk when I stopped playing with toys and became a cool teenager and I didn't think about it for many years, until I started to think up names for a new hard rock band in the beginning of the millennium. The one I came up with was what I thought was the name of my old rock n' roll toy: Crazy Lixx and it wasn't until years later that I came across a Hot Lixx guitar and realized my error. Danny Rexon (vocals)

CRIMSON GLORY (Progressive metal) (Sarasota, USA) (Formed in 1982) We wanted a name that had a colourful, powerful, meaningful, timeless feel a la Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd, and Deep Purple. Our drummer, Dana Burnell and rhythm guitarist, Ben Jackson lived together at the time that we were writing and recording our first demo. Dana had a poster on the wall in his bedroom of a red rose with the words "Crimson Glory" printed on it. We were intrigued by that and agreed that it sounded like a pretty cool band name. We did a little research and learned that the Crimson Glory was supposed to be the rose by which all other red roses were judged. From that moment on Crimson Glory was born; we knew we had found our name. Jon Drenning (lead guitar)

DALI'S LLAMA (Stoner rock) (Palm Springs, USA) (Formed in 1992) The title of a song off of our first CD (Pre Post Now) called “Art and Meditation” probably offers the best explanation. Dali’s Llama is a play on words, referring to the artist Dali and to the leader of Tibetan Buddhism, His Holiness the Dalai Lama. We were practicing mediation and learning a lot about Zen at the time. Art had always been a big focus for both of us, both aural and visual. So the two came together, both as a band name and a band influence. Now, sixteen years later, the name still gives us the freedom to be as creative as we want, without boundaries. Zach & Erica Huskey (vocals/guitar, bass)

DARKANE (Melodic death/Thrash metal) (Helsingborg, Sweden) (Formed in 1998) Our band name came about as a mistake actually. We were supposed to be called Arcane but soon discovered we were not the only ones thinking of that name. When we recorded our first demos a friend of ours came to the studio. When he asked us about our name we said Arcane and he misheard that and said "Darkane, that's a cool name". We just went like “Yeah we know!” When we thought and talked about it, it made sense as it's a mix of Dark and Arcane. The best thing is that it's actually not a word but made up which makes it unique and a lot easier to Google these days. Peter Wildoer (drums)

DARKTHRONE (Black metal) (Kolbotn, Norway) (Formed in 1987) For once, the story about our band name is real, meaning that it has always been told correctly down through the "ages". In autumn of 1987 I had already done two demos with my band Black Death, and decided that I wanted to continue doing music, but trying to take it to a more serious level. Inspired by the coolest magazine name I knew (Blackthorn Magazine from Denmark ran by the Desexult guys) and also the lyric from Celtic Frost's "To Mega Therion" album "Jewel Throne," where this line just cemented the belief in my new found band name: "I'm the king, sitting in the dark…" Early Celtic Frost was one of the reasons I started up a band in the first place, and has always and is still a major influence for me concerning Darkthrone and life in general. Fenriz (drums/rhythm guitar/bass/vocals)

DAYLIGHT DIES (Death metal) (Asheville, USA) (Formed in 1996) I thought of the name in 1996 for the name of the serious new band I'd be forming with Barre Gambling, whom I'd been jamming with in various bands since the age of 14. The name is a metaphor for the bleak introspective emotional outlook we express in the band. The name isn't very subtle, but neither is the emotional weight of our music, so I think it's a good fit. Jesse Haff (drums)

DEAD MAN (Psychedelic rock) (Narke, Sweden) (Formed in 2003) Our name was taken from an American band called Josefus. They played in the late sixties and are from USA, Austin I think. They released an album called Dead Man and they also have a song called “Dead Man”. It was Kristoffer Sjödahl’s idea to name the band Dead Man. Kristoffer is a big record collector and he has a lot of rare original vinyl. We all like Josefus so we said yes. Joakim Dimberg (bass)

DEVILLAC (Stoner metal) (Turku, Finland) (Formed in 2000) The name is actually a song title off a band Devillac's drummer Mikko was in before being one of the founding members of Devillac. It's probably a made up word combining the words devil and Cadillac. We know there is a small town in France with that name, but that is not where the name came from. We think it's a cool name that fits the music we play, hard-hitting and rifffriendly stoner rock. Micki (vocals)

DEXTER JONES CIRCUS ORCHESTRA (Classic rock) (Umea, Sweden) (Formed in 2000)

A long time ago we had another band, including the same members plus a couple of more. The old band had a manager called Dexter Jones. When the band split up some of us started a new band called the Circus Orchestra. Circus came from the fact that we composed and conducted music for a lot of stage productions (dance, plays and so on). One day our former manager gave us a call reminding us about a contract we signed in our youth. It said that he actually owned everything we’d ever do including our offspring. He offered to tear the contract apart if we included his name in our band name. Said and done. Tia Marklund (vocals/guitar)

DIMMU BORGIR (Symphonic black metal) (Oslo, Norway) (Formed in 1993) I stole the name from the Icelandic lava formation Dimmúborgir, after hearing how a pope declared a near-by place, Myvatn, the entrance to hell. My Icelandic mother had already told stories about how children had gotten lost and other myths taking place in Dimmúborgir, a place looking like a castle from hell. Tristan Lundsten (bass)

DIRTY LOOKS (Hard rock) (San Francisco, USA) (Formed in 1984) The band was originally called Crossfire. We were at rehearsal playing and our drummer at that stage of the band said "Hey man, let's call the band Dirty Looks". It's as simple as that. I thought it was a tough, street sounding name. Henrik Ostergaard (vocals/guitars)

DISMAL EUPHONY (Gothic metal) (Stavanger, Norway) (Formed in 1992) We didn't want a typical black metal name (or logo) since we were quite outside that box lyrically and musically. Of course you can hear black metal inspirations in Dismal Euphony, but we wanted to sound and look different than all the other bands of our time. Therefore we ended up with a non-symmetric logo and took a lot of inspiration from classical music, progressive rock and more obscure stuff like When, etc. We aimed for a name that would describe our music; which was melancholic, dark and dismal, but also melodic and full of euphony, and that's that. The word “dismal” was found in the first unanimated booklet, and the word “euphony” was "stolen" from some lyrics written inside the Black Lodge (band from Stavanger/Norway) demo.

Kristoffer Vold Austrheim (drums)

DON FERNANDO (Stoner metal) (Melbourne, Australia) (Formed in 2004) The way the name came about was I was traveling through Chile with a friend and we met some people in Santiago, we asked if they could score us any coke which they said they could through a friend named Don Fernando. When Don Fernando rolled up in a gold Mercedes Convertible with a 19 year old beauty on his arm (he was in his 80s) and provided us with some great coke, I vowed to name a band in his honor, when I returned to Australia I started a new band and hence the name. Andy Simpson (vocals/guitar)

DRAGONTEARS (Psychedelic rock) (Copenhagen, Denmark) (Formed in 2005) The name relates to a self-experienced story. I met a girl in Copenhagen who was collecting rubble from a sidewalk like it was gold or something and my first impression was that she was crazy but after a while of conversation I came to the conclusion that she was just on drugs. Being experienced in that area myself I just asked her flat out and she replied she was on “Lightly Salted Dragontears” with a smirk and a grin. Lorenzo Woodrose (vocals/guitar/organ)

DREAMSCAPE (Speed/Thrash metal) (Munchen, Germany) (Formed in 1986) Over 20 years ago we were looking for a name for the band. It had to be short and screamable. I remembered about the film Dreamscape with Dennis Quaid and we loved it. We thought about a band with the name Dream Theater but this band had only one album out and we didn't know at this time that this band will become the most known progressive metal band now sometimes it’s a curse with the "dream" in our name. Wolfgang Kerinnis (guitars)

DUSKMACHINE (Progressive metal) (Germany) (Formed in 2004) Well, if I remember correctly, our original singer Hagen Hirschmann came up with the name. Our original bass player Peter Habura and I played in a band called "Deception" back then. After our drummer left, Randy Black joined us and because Peter didn't want to sing anymore we were looking for a singer, too. Joe was busy back then, so Hagen joined and we all thought it's time for a new beginning; also because there were quite a few bands out there with the name "Deception". After collecting several names, Hagen had the idea of a "DuskMachine". The name should represent the music, since I was experimenting with low tunings and the 7-string guitar back then. It sounded good to us and had some kind of "evil" touch, without being too clichĂŠ-like, you know? Of course we also checked if there's no other band with the same name; but we were lucky. So, this is how "DuskMachine" was born. Nikolai Wurk (guitar)

DUSTSUCKER (Heavy metal) (North Rhine, Germany) (Formed in 1993) Back in 1990 a few friends and I hung around in the University of Bielefeld Germany, and we talked about this and that (mostly about rock/metal bands). During these lazy hours I wondered what is the English word for the German Staubsauger (as I now know it is vacuum cleaner) and I translated it literally and we had a good laugh about DUSTSUCKER! I thought that was a good name for a band, because no one else could be dumb enough to use this name. Marco Piermattei (drums)

E FORCE (Thrash metal) (Montreal, Canada) (Formed in 2001) I started the E-Force band the afternoon I got sacked from Voivod...started writing songs, etc. I decided to call it E-Force of which was my nickname in Voivod‌for marketing reasons really. Eric Forrest (vocals/bass)

EARTHRIDE (Doom metal) (USA) (Formed in 2000) We got the name from the Earthride cymbal from Zidjian. It has a motorcycle thing going on and I ride motorcycles and we are all riding the earth so it fit with the sound of the band! Dave Sherman (vocals)

EDENBRIDGE (Symphonic metal) (Austria) (Formed in 1998) Edenbridge is the name of a small town in the county of Kent. In 1998 I discovered this name and I just thought wow! This is the perfect name for our music and the lyrics we have. Our music always stood for positive energy and messages. My whole life is dominated by Edenbridge, so this name and trademark means a lot to me as you can imagine! Lanvall (guitar/keyboards)

EL CACO (Stoner rock) (Oslo, Norway) (Formed in 1998) We used to be called Cake and we knew about a small American band with the same name, that was before they hit the big time and since they beat us to the finish line we had to change our name. We didn’t want to go too far away from the original name and just did a little Spanish twist to it, without even knowing the meaning of it. So after a year or so we met a stewardess on our way to a gig, and she told us the meaning of it. We were not disappointed since the meaning is "the thief" or "a small time criminal" and that suited us well. Later on we received a good story from a fan that had a friend who was put to prison in a Spanish talking country with one of our t-shirts on. The warden was so amused by the t-shirt that he asked for it in exchange for a little slack. So there is a happy warden somewhere with an El Caco t-shirt.

Oyvind Osa (vocals/bass)

EL THULE (Stoner metal) (Bergamo, Italy) (Formed in 2001) The name is in honour to the Tule Tree placed in the village of Santa Maria Del Tule, Oaxaca, Mexico. Both the bassist and the drummer of El Thule have been there two different times and they were so impressed by that tree. When we decided to start the band we decided to add an H (because it sounds cool) and honourate the Tule Tree giving this name to our band. Matteo (guitars/vocals)

ELECTRIC MAGMA (Stoner metal) (Toronto, Canada) (Formed in 1993) Basically while looking to change our band direction, we decided to change our name as well. Every single name we came up with (and we came up with PAGES) seemed taken. At the same time we were changing our name, we were also auditioning singers, and some guy e-mailed me from the address Both Tryg and I e-mailed each other right away and said “hey, that's a cool name for a band�. Sure enough it wasn't taken, and we snapped it up. We never did audition that guy, and ironically never did get a singer. That was eight years ago. Tim Reesor (guitars)

ELEGY (Progressive power metal) (Eindhoven, Netherlands) (Formed in 1986) The person that came up with the name Elegy was Chris Terheijden (very first Elegy singer). He was reading a book called "the Legend of Elegy" and it was about a Greek half-goddess called Elegy. Henk first wanted to use the name "Metallion". Ian Parry (vocals)

EMPYRIA (Power metal) (Vancouver, Canada) (Formed in 1991) A long time ago I had looked in a dictionary and saw in that version the definition of Empyrean: the purest place in heaven and/or the place of pure fire in hell. We changed it to Empyrea on our first demo but it didn't look right so we changed it to Empyria and as a definition of our

progish metal style we had lighter parts in our music and on the other hand we also had some heavier darker sounding material, hence our name. Mike Kischnick (guitars/synth)

ENGINES OF AGGRESSION (Industrial metal) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1993) I had a mohawk at the time and it was more inspired by the band Bow Wow Wow and the mohawk Indians than it was by punk rock. So I had the idea of Angry Ingunz (like Indians). That sounded silly but I liked the concept of pissed off Indians with mohawks coming to fuck shit up. I was thumbing through the dictionary looking for better words to describe someone angry, started at the A's, found Aggression, great word. Ingunz and Agression. Aggressive Indians? No way. Then somehow Ingunz morphed into Engines. Engines of Aggression. There it is! I always thought the name was great. The saw blade and screaming face came about before the saw blade was kind of a clichĂŠ thing (you see it all the time these days) but I found a saw blade in the tool closet and had a xerox of my face screaming and superimposed it on a traced saw blade on a piece of paper. Engines of Aggression and this screaming head on the saw blade? Hell yeah. Tripp Holland (vocals)

ENSLAVED (Black metal) (Sveio, Norway) (Formed in 1991) Grutle Kjellson and I split our previous death metal band Phobia in late 1990. We spent the next half year planning the start of a new extreme metal band more influenced by black metal and progressive music. With Trym on drums the line-up was complete in May 1991, but lacked the name. During a local show we were visited by amongst others Demonaz from Immortal. When presented with the lack of a band name, Demonaz immediately offered Enslaved as the band name; after one of Immortal's first songs (they were a demo band then) "Enslaved in Rot". This fit the band perfect, and it became our name Ivar Bjørnson (guitar)

EPICA (Symphonic metal) (Limburg, Netherlands) (Formed in 2002) When we started the band our original name was "Sahara Dust". This could be explained since our music contains some Arabic feel and melodies. However we thought it wasn't THE name to go with so we decided to look for another name which would be somewhat more catchy. When we were in the studio to record our first album, Kamelot was also recording their Epica album. When we saw that name it immediately appealed to us and we decided to go with that name. Not only because we like Kamelot's music but also because of its meaning. Epica means; a

place somewhere in the universe where you can find the answers to the questions of life! This connects well to some of the topics in our lyrics. Coen Janssen (synth/piano)

EXCITER (Speed metal) (Ottawa, Canada) (Formed in 1978) We got the name from the Judas Priest song of the same name. It was around 1980 we changed our name from Hell Razor to Exciter. One of our road crew and close friends suggested the name one day when we were listening to Unleashed in the East which is a live album by the Priest. We thought the name Exciter described us exactly, high energy, basic riffing, screaming vocals combined with a very visual presentation at our live shows. We still retain all these elements which makes Exciter a unique and necessary talent in today’s metal market. John Ricci (guitars)

EXHORDER (Thrash metal) (New Orleans, USA) (Formed in 1985) Exhorder; from the word exhort “to force”. Basically the "d" came from dialect pronunciation down here. Exhort was in the Exorcist book. Many names were thrown around that didn't quite fit the band as the band was emerging and had no real identity at the time. So a name that would take on meaning as the band developed makes a lot of sense. Also liked that is was and is a unique name for a band; a mash of words to make a new word with one clear meaning. Chris Nail (drums)

EXMORTEM (Death metal) (Aarhus, Denmark) (Formed in 1992) When we chose the name we wanted something that had the right meaning and would fit as a description of the music we play and the lyrics we write. Exmortem to us means a kind of state after death. You could say that it's our "life" after death; what happens and where you go when you die. Martin Sigtyr (guitars)

FATSO JETSON (Stoner rock) (Palm Desert, USA) (Formed in 1994) Fatso Jetson is a character from the movie From Here to Eternity. The sadistic, barking, barrel chested sergeant played by Ernest Borgnine. Also when I formed the band in ‘94 I was close to 400 lbs. so I thought it was a fitting moniker. Mario Lalli (vocals/guitar)

FIFTH ANGEL (Power metal) (Bellevue, USA) (Formed in 1983) Shortly after the inception and formation of the band in the mid-80s (it was really more of a project than a band at that time), we were faced, as all bands are, with coming up with a name. We had all been in numerous bands prior to Fifth Angel, and had all gone through the typical routine of trying to figure out a name that would sound cool, be a good fit, and represent the bands musical style, vibe, etc. During one particular brainstorming session, Ted Pilot's brother joined in to help, hauling out textbooks from college courses he was taking at the time (Ted was the original singer whose voice graces the two Fifth Angel albums/CDs from the era). The first book was related to insects, listing both the typical common names and the scientific names of many different insects, bugs, etc. After reading off and pondering many different names of bugs...we were all very discouraged, not hearing anything that was really striking, interesting or cool! So...on to the next book which happened to be a Bible (one of the college courses Ted's brother was taking was theology) off he goes again, thumbing through pages and randomly stopping and reading out passages, phrases, names and such...and again, nothing very striking, interesting or compelling....but then, he starts thumbing through pages from the Book of Revelations section and starts reading out stories about different angels. "The first angel came down and did 'this', and the second angel appeared and did 'that'"...and so on...again, nothing quite stood out yet, although we felt we were on the right track compared to all the bug names! Eventually he got to a passage that described the fifth angel....we all paused as we were thinking the same thing; "Now THAT name has some real potential!" So that was it, we all liked the name and felt it was perfect for us. Ed Archer (guitar)

FLESHROT (Death metal) (London, England) (Formed in 2003) Fleshrot was thought up when writing lyrics for an unnamed project. The lyrical theme of the band is anti-humanity, brutality, the darker side of the human mind and the degeneration of the world that we are living in today, an utter contempt for the modern world if you like.

The two obvious words “flesh” and “rot,” symbolize the degeneration and decay of what was once a beautiful world, the reason of that decay is the growth in vile, disgusting human beings and cultures that are slowly swallowing this world whole, the flesh representing humanity, and the rot representing the degeneration. Ben Wright (vocals)

FLOATING WIDGET (Stoner rock) (Montreal, Canada) (Formed in 2001) Guiness beer added "widgets" inside their cans. The can would say "new floating widget". Stephane Vigeant (guitar)

FLOWER KINGS (Progressive rock) (Airborne, Sweden) (Formed in 1994) It was a name chosen from a number of names that I liked; I just wrote down a list of possible band names and this one stood out as a name I really liked. I guess I like it because it has a positive ring and also feels like as if it is connected to the hippie era of late 60s; a period that I find very important in the history of rock; an era of freedom of expression and vision. Also as an alternative to much of the darker depressing and hard edged images of today's rock and hard rock. Roine Stolt (vocals/guitars/keyboards/bass)

FORGOTTEN TALES (Power metal) (Quebec City, Canada) (Formed in 1999) Forgotten Tales began as a tribute to power metal based in Quebec City. We needed a name for this project that would be inspiring for the style of music. Since lyrics in power metal are almost always about medieval stuff, fairy tales, legends and other epic stuff, we did a brainstorming around these themes until the name popped out of someone's brain. I don't remember if it was me or Sonia who found it back then but everyone in the band liked it. Someone told me later that it was almost the title of a Blind Guardian album but it was pure coincidence.

Martin Desharnais (guitar)

FROZEN TEARS (Traditional heavy metal) (Florence, Italy) (Formed in 1997) We chose the band name 12 years ago. I was with all the band in a pub. It was January and it was very cold. We drank many beers and all the members proposed a lot of awful band names. After a few hours we were drunk and we smiled like mad. Leaving the local we smiled so much we were crying. At that point our bass player proposed "frozen tears" and since the cold frozen our tears we thought it was the right name. Leonardo Taiti (rhythm guitar)

FUCK THE FACTS (Grindcore) (Ottawa, Canada) (Formed in 1998) I was really into a John Zorn band called Naked City, and the name “Fuck the Facts� is taken from one of the songs on the self-titled album. It just jumped out and grabbed me, it embodied everything I wanted to do with this project and I consider it to be my lucky charm as it's brought us success in all the right places and kept us out of places I hope I never end up. Topon Das (guitar)

GALACTIC COWBOYS (Progressive metal) (Houston, USA) (Formed in 1989) We originally called ourselves Hall Of Souls. That only lasted for one show. At first we were thinking of something that sounded pretentious, but we knew our music was a little weird and quirky. One night I came home and had a message on my answering machine and it was our manager, Sam Taylor. He said, "Hey, bout Galactic Cowboys for a name?" As soon as I heard that I thought of all kinds of marketing and merchandise ideas...and it sounded like it fit who we were. We lived in Houston, the "Cowboy" thing kind of applied. And the whole space thing sounded like a futuristic kind of vibe. Sam told us later that there was a motorcycle gang in Dallas back in the 60s called the Galactic Cowboys, and I guess he had always thought that would make a good name for a band. Looking back, I'm not sure how well it worked for us. I think it confused people... (as did our music.) I think some people thought we were a country band by the sound of the name. And for some reason, it was almost always misspelled on the sign outside of the venues. We often showed up to see TONIGHT......GALATIC COWBOYS. But it was what it was. Again...kind of like our either got it or you didn't. Monty Colvin (bass/vocals)

GALLOWS POLE (Heavy metal) (Vienna, Austria) (Formed in 1978) It was the idea of our drummer, he liked the Led Zeppelin song very much and we liked the name as well. Alois Martin Binder (vocals/guitar)

GEMINI FIVE (Hard rock) (Stockholm, Sweden) (Formed in 2003) I came up with the name since we didn’t want a lame pussy name like Dixxie Lixxie Dangerous Whizpers. We wanted a name that's universal and didn't sound glam or as a simple rock n' roll band. We are a hard rock band. Nothing less! It's the name of a NASA rocket ship from the 60s. Surely people have heard about the Apollo project taking man to the moon but before that there was the Gemini project rocketing man to the skies. Just simply rocket number five or in Roman numerals "V". However we spell it F-I-V-E. Hot Rod (guitar/bass/backing vocals)

GENEROUS MARIA (Stoner rock) (Goteborg, Sweden) (Formed in 1998) I have to take you back ten some odd years to Greece and the island of Amorgos. My girlfriend Magdalena and I hung around at some taverna with a few friends from all over and I must have mentioned this new act that we were putting together back home. We’d been playing for a while but we badly needed a name for the band. So people started to throw suggestions around, I don’t remember any of those, they might have been excellent but nothing really stuck. The conversation wandered away in different directions and Magdalena talked of this friend of hers whose boyfriend was a real stingy, tightfisted guy and what a pity that was, especially as Magdalena’s friend, Maria, was such a kind and generous soul. And there it was; someone said “Hey! Generous Maria, that’s a cool name for the band!” I thought it sounded alright, wrote it down and forgot about for the time being. Back in the rehearsal room a few weeks later I told the guys in the band this suggestion, and yeah, we’ve been Generous Maria ever since. Göran Florström (vocals)

GENITORTURERS (Industrial metal) (Orlando, USA) (Formed in 1991) At the time when I was starting the band I was in college studying pre-med and also just getting into what was a very underground piercing scene. I came across a card at a gay nightclub that read "know your hot hanky colors". On the card was a listing of how to wear your bandana to indicate to others what you are into sexually speaking. For example: Blue on the right or left back pocket indicated one was looking to either give or receive a blowjob. The list of colors was pretty long, and very graphic. I spied on the list the color purple and the word “Genitorture” one who is looking to give or receive genital piercings. Being that my name is Gen, I was a piercer and coincidentally am also Gemini with a purple birthstone, it just seemed to be fate! Gen (vocals)

GLASSPACK (Stoner rock) (Louisville, USA) (Formed in 1999) I picked the name because I love muscle cars and I always noticed the loud glasspack exhaust systems on some of them. Our band is loud and fast, so it sounded like a good title! Dirty Dave Johnson (vocals/guitar)

GLORIOR BELLI (Black metal) (Paris, France) (Formed in 2002) "Glorior Belli" is Latin for “to glorify yourself at war”. It's not at all a "war" supportive leitmotiv but it definitely has a special meaning to us and it's quite simple actually: life is a struggle and without the fights there would be no glory in the end, no reward. Glorior Belli learned the hard way and I'm very proud that we're still standing stronger and with more motivation than ever. J (vocals/guitar/bass)

GORGOROTH (Black metal) (Bergen, Norway) (Formed in 1992) Although I am no longer interested in such books, in my late teens I was very keen on fantasy literature, particularly J.R.R. Tolkien's books. When I read "the Lord of the Rings" I got familiar with Gorgoroth; a name which signified terror and fear, the dwelling place of the forces of darkness. Subsequently, in 1992, when I decided to form a black metal band, I decided that Gorgoroth would be a suitable band name. Infernus (guitars/bass/drums/vocals)

GRAND ASTORIA (Stoner rock) (St. Petersburg, Russia) (Formed in 2009) So the band name came to me suddenly. I was just thinking of something monumental and epic for the band name but tried to avoid typical metal and rock clichés. One day I walked along the center of the city I am living in (Saint-Petersburg, Russia) and my view fell on the building of one of the biggest and oldest hotels in the city "Grand Astoria”. So that's how the name appeared. I just added “the,” not to be mixed with the hotel. Camille (vocals/guitar)

GRASSHOPPER LIES HEAVY (Progressive sludge metal) (San Antonio, USA) (Formed in 2005) We got our name from the Philip K. Dick book "the Man in the High Castle". It is the title of a fictional book within the book. James (guitars/vocals/organ/noise)

GREAT WHITE (Hard rock) (Bellevue, USA) (Formed in 1983) Back in 1981, Jack and I were playing around Hollywood and Orange County, USA under the band name Dante Fox. In 1982 one night when we were playing at the Whiskey A-Go-Go in Hollywood, there was an A&R guy named Alan Niven from a label called Enigma which had Motley Crue and Berlin in the audience. Well every time I went into a solo Jack would always say Mr. Mark Kendall the Great White. He had been calling me that for a while so it was like a nickname to announce my guitars solos. Well the following day we were invited by the A&R man Niven to come down to the record company and chat. Jack and I go into his office and the first thing he said was I love the band, I love the songs, and I hate your name Dante Fox. We say OK well 2 out of 3 ain't bad so we just have to think of a name. Niven says I already have your new band name. We go ok what is it? He says "Great White". We looked at him laughing and saying are you serious? He says yep. Jack and I absolutely hated the name but said I guess these are some of the compromises you have to make when you’re dealing with the big boys. We didn't like it because we thought it sounded racist. But then we thought of the Great White Shark! That was it we loved the name. Mark Kendall (lead guitar)

GRIP INC. (Groove metal) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1993) The name "Grip" sounded very strong to us. It fit our enthusiasm about being a band and our music. It was Dave Lombardo's first and only band after years of Slayer. We came together from different parts of the world with Dave from America with Cuban roots, Gus Chambers from England and me from Germany, but we shared the same strong love for music and felt full of energy and life. Our motivation was to have and never lose the Grip. We had to change the name to Grip Inc., however, because it was already taken by a band that didn't even exist anymore, but still

wanted money for us for using this name. What a shame. But at the end we felt more comfortable with "Grip Inc.� anyway. Waldemar Sorychta (guitar/bass)

GROINCHURN (Grindcore) (Johannesburg, South Africa) (Formed in 1994) Our drummer was playing in some garage punk/crust style bands in 1990/91, one of the guys in these bands called Garth had it scribbled in a book as a possible band name, but it was never used (they went for ADF (Anarchistic Death Fuck). The drummer and guitarist then played in a brutal death metal band called Sepsis. They wanted to do a more grind type thing as a project and the drummer suggested the name "Groinchurn" in 1994. Christo Bester (vocals/bass)

HACKMAN (Stoner metal) (Allston, USA) (Formed in 2005) The only real reason we chose Hackman as our band name is because it just sounds cool, it's a cool sounding word. Plus, Gene's the man. Ever see "he French Connection? Darryl Shepard (guitars/vocals)

HAIL! HORNET (Sludge metal) (Moyock, USA) (Formed in 2006) The name actually came about because of the photos we took for the first record. We were standing outside an old condemned shed built in the 1800s, when one of the guys stepped inside for a better look around. He unintentionally ran into a bald-faced hornet's nest. They did not hesitate to chase us out of the shed and nail a couple of us in the process! So, basically the name is derived from a new respect for stinging insects! Vincent Burke (guitars)

HAMMERFALL (Power metal) (Gothenburg, Sweden) (Formed in 1993) When I chose the name of the band, I already knew what musical direction we would have, as well as what kind of band I wanted it to be. Hammerfall was a reaction to the depressive grunge and all the aggressive rhythm-based music that was all the rage in those days. I had three main concerns when deciding on a band name. It would have to reflect the heavy metal music we were going to play. It should be easy to pronounce and remember, with a clear logo. Basically, I wanted a name I thought was cool and that was unique, i.e. didn't appear in every dictionary. Hammerfall fit all three of those categories perfectly, and although I didn't realize it at the time, I probably couldn't have come up with a better and more fitting name. I don't know exactly where it came from, but I believe it was used in Stephen King's Tommyknockers and that's where I saw it the first time. A song by Warlord played some part too, probably, but the details are a bit hazy; this was in 1993. Oscar Dronjak (rhythm guitars/backing vocals)

HAREM SCAREM (Hard rock) (Toronto, Canada) (Formed in 1987) Harem Scarem was the name of one of the first Bugs Bunny cartoons. We thought it was funny at the time! Harry Hess (vocals)

HATESPHERE (Death metal) (Aarhus, Denmark) (Formed in 1998) Well, we started the band out as Necrosis. Both the logo and the band name was a bit too death metal for us; and we simply didn’t like the old band name; so we started out searching for a new one. At that time we had just got our first record deal and were about to record our debut album, so we thought this would be a good time to change the name. I don’t quite know how we got to it but we found the whole idea with a sphere very cool and what would be cooler than a sphere of full of hate? On top of that we thought the name; especially because it didn’t sound old school death metalish; sounded way more evil and brutal than our previous one and therefore fitted the music way better. So the band name for me fits the music but apart from that it hasn’t got that big of a meaning. Pepe (lead guitar)

HEAVEN'S EDGE (Melodic metal) (Philadelphia, USA) (Formed in 1987) Mark Evans (singer) was previously in a band called Network and there was already a band named Network so they held a contest with their fans to come up with another name. Heavens Edge was one of the suggestions. It wasn't picked but Mark remembered it and when it came time for us to choose a name he told us and we all liked it and went with it. Reggie Wu (guitar/keyboard)

HEAVY WATER EXPERIMENTS (Psychedelic metal) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 2006) My father and I took a trip to Iceland and Sweden in August of 2007, and when I was walking through the streets one day, I suddenly realized I was bored with Imogene. (Not to mention the accumulation of encountering the rise of Imogen Heap after we'd already officiated our band name choice.) I think the term "heavy water experiments" was first injected into my consciousness via an old Star Trek episode where Kirk and Spock go back through a time portal to the Great Depression era. Spock informs Kirk that if he doesn't allow Joan Collins' character to die as she is predicted to; she will bring about a national peace movement; "allowing the Germans enough time to complete their heavy water experiments and capture the world�. Well, I realized it would make a wonderful name for this band (Roberto agreed); not as a specific reference to World War II but moreover as suggesting musical notions of "heavy" and "experimentation" (okay, with a touch of the "post-apocalyptic" in a more general historical context). Band names are so difficult. They should impress quickly and then remain in the mind. At the same time, they shouldn't be too literal or annunciatory about the music. I've had my regrets with past choices. Finally, I think I've landed on a name that really fits and will stick. David Melbye (vocals/guitar/keyboard/bass)

HECATE ENTHRONED (Black metal) (Cheshire, England) (Formed in 1993) We chose the name over 15 years ago. We wanted a name that captured our satanic and pagan roots at that time and went for one of the old goddess' and wanted to show that we were empowered and a rising force in what we were doing, so we went for Hecate Enthroned, showing we were strong and dark and going to be around forever. Dylan Hughes (bass)

HELHEIM (Viking black metal) (Bergen, Norway) (Formed in 1992) In the beginning we went through many different names choosing Pandemonial Storm from a Celtic Frost lyric on Vanity/Nemesis. At that point our lyrics didn't have any direction topic-wise and the band name didn't have any symbolic value. We then chose to change the name to Helheim as this represented the direction we wanted for the lyrics of the band, namely Norse and pagan. Helheim also represents the Norwegian language which some early lyrics also were presented in. It also got a dark feeling to it as the realm of Hel ain't a warm and nice place, but rather represents the misfortune of mankind. As our lyrics are dark, so should our band-name also be. Ă˜rjan Nordvik (bass/vocals)

HELIX (Hard rock) (Kitchener, Canada) (Formed in 1974) When the band first started in Kitchener, Ontario in 1974, some of the guys in the band were still in school. We had our very first gig booked and needed a name, so Bruce Arnold, our drummer, wrote down a list from his science textbook. We voted on which name we liked best at band practice that night and chose "the Helix Field Band". Later, when manager William Seip came into the picture, we shortened it to "Helix". Brian Vollmer (vocals)

HELLACOPTERS (Hard rock) (Stockholm, Sweden) (Formed in 1994) We got the name from a free magazine in the San Francisco area in 1994. There was an article about how the FBI (or CIA) was spying on Mexican marihuana fields and the headline was "The Hellacopters". Our logo was taken/influenced from the movie poster Creature with the Atom Brain. Robert Eriksson (bass/backing vocals)

HELLWITCH (Death/Thrash metal) (Fort Lauderdale, USA) (Formed in 1984) In mid-1984, me and my old college roommate were joking about how many generic band names were starting to emerge. There was Angel Witch, Stormwitch, Blackwitch, Axe Witch, Witch, etc. Then you had, Hellhammer, Helstar, Hell, etc. So, as a paradoxical, ironic stab at the heart of the name-game, we came up with Hellwitch! The ultimate in generic names applied to an ultimately original, one-of-a-kind band! Pat Ranieri (guitar/vocals)

HEY COLOSSUS (Doom/Heavy metal) (London, England) (Formed in 2003) Colossus is the self-styled big man. We’re calling him out, in a sarcastic fuck you fashion. There should have been a comma between the “hey” and the “colossus”. I.E: “HEY, COLOSSUS, GIVE IT A FUCKING BREAK!” Something like that. Joe (bass)

HOODED MENACE (Death/Doom metal) (Joensuu, Finland) (Formed in 2007) When the band was formed I was already in contact with Billy Nocera, the head honcho of Razorback Records, as he had released my other band´s (Vacant Coffin) debut album. Billy was very interested in my new death/doom band and since we didn´t have a name yet we began to brainstorm the ideas with Billy. Lyric-wise the band was heavily inspired by the 70s Euro horror movies particularly the Spanish horror series the Blind Dead. Billy threw name candidates such as Mark of the Devil and the Headless Eyes but none of them really clicked. Then one day he e-mailed me the two words: Hooded Menace. I knew that was it. In a very simple yet effective way the two words referred to the hooded Blind Dead Templars from those cult movies. It was pretty much a perfect name for our band that was, and still is, so inspired by those menacing riders of doom of the gory screen. Our relationship with Razorback didn´t last longer than for one album but since then the name Hooded Menace has been efficiently spread by more professional and dedicated records labels such as Profound Lore and Doomentia.

Lasse Pyykkรถ (bass/vocals)

HORTUS ANIMAE (Progressive black metal) (Rimini, Italy) (Formed in 1997) Hortus Animae is Latin for "the Garden of the Soul". We have chosen Latin because it's strictly connected to our ancient history and it was the language used on our lands. About the meaning itself, it's connected to our musical and lyrical concepts. With music and lyrics we have developed, in a lapse of a demo tape and three albums, the concept of expressing all the feelings of mankind. And this is what you can find in the Garden of the Soul, a collection of all sorts of human feelings. Also, by our keyboard player's personal interpretation, the Garden of the Soul can also be seen as a cemetery, where all souls rest in peace, or not. Because we analyze certain feelings and all of their opposite. Martyr Lucifer (vocals)

HOUR OF 13 (Doom metal) (USA) (Formed in 2006) The Hour of 13 name comes from the time duration between midnight and 1 AM on the days of Candlemass Eve (February 2nd) and Samhain (Novembre 1st) and is used primarily for magical/ritual expulsion. There is mention of this time in the old movie Horror Hotel/City of the Dead. Also, there was a movie made in the 50s titled the Hour of 13 however the name was not taken from that. The music of Hour of 13 is magic in itself, and this name is most fitting and quite mystical and obscure. Chad Davis (guitar/bass/drums)

HOUSE OF SHAKIRA (Hard rock) (Stockholm, Sweden) (Formed in 1991) At the start the band was called the Station. Then a Swedish record company thought that the name sounded too much like their own (the Record Station), so the band unanimously decided to drop the name. A couple of weeks later our demo was reviewed in a German music magazine saying that "this is a great band, but at the moment they don't have a name". The magazine arranged a kind of contest for their readers to name our excellent, nameless band. One of the readers in England, Geoff Noddings, entered the contest and suggested the name of House of Shakira. In 1991, newspapers in England wrote about a boutique in London called the House of Shakira. Using the selling of clothes in the boutique as a cover, this store actually offered and sold a very different commodity. The House of Shakira was in fact a bordello. Today the band uses the name as a metaphor for something that is not what it seems to be. I should add that it was an Arabic brothel. And as

we have Arabic/Oriental/African influences in our music, we thought that it would be a perfect band name. But we got serious problems around 2002 when Shakira had her breakthrough. Anders Lundstrom (guitar)

HUSKY (Doom/Stoner metal) (Charlotte, USA) (Formed in 1999) The three of us (Mark, Nate, and I) started playing together in late 1999. In early 2000 we started talking about some possible band names, and I suggested Husky (referencing the clothes a kid would wear if he/she were a bit on the large side). The style of music we were playing had a very thick, round, fat sound, so it seemed like a good fit. Mark and I were cool with it, but Nate was hesitant because he was a big kid and had to endure wearing husky sized pants and such (and was apparently still sensitive about it). After thinking about it for a few weeks though, Nate finally came around and we went with it, and we've been Husky ever since. Phil Strickland (guitar)

HYPNOPILOT (Stoner rock) (Calgary, Canada) (Formed in 2002) There is a band we're fans of from Norway called Honcho. They came out with an album in 2001 I believe was the year, called Corporate Rock. “Hypnopilot� is a song from that album. So essentially we took the name from another bands song name, much like a few other bands have done. That wasn't the intent it just seemed like a cool name. It was a song we used to cover sometimes. Matthew (vocals/guitar)

ICARUS WITCH (Power metal) (Pittsburgh, USA) (Formed in 2004) I've been a practicing witch about as long as I've been a practicing musician; both lifelong fascinations began for me at age 13. While I've been in many bands over the years, I've always wanted to create a band that tied in my love of classic hard rock and heavy metal to at least a cursory or subliminal nod to my pagan roots. At any major crossroads in my life, I've always conducted spells, rituals or scrying techniques to obtain clarity and suggestion, be it tarot, mirrors, crystals, Ouija, meditation, etc. While living in L.A. in the early 2000s, I became possessed with a burning desire to form this dream band of mine. I was being bombarded with ideas and inspiration but needed a focal point, which I thought a band name could offer some dot on the horizon to work toward. I conducted a rather simple sĂŠance type ritual in which I consult the powers that be and attempt to make contact with ancestor spirits and divinity. During this trance, it was like the mist of my mind cleared and one name appeared, logo and all: ICARUS WITCH. Now I had previously thought of using the word witch in the title, but couldn't find the right qualifier. This meditation brought to me a second word that sounded powerful combined, sort of like Abra Cadabra or Hocus Pocus, like a mini-spell to strengthen the bands power each time someone utters it. Besides having a lovely cadence, the Greek mythology of Icarus is a tale that has popped up from time to time in songs by pioneering bands in our genre, like Iron Maiden ("Flight Of Icarus") and Yngwie J. Malmsteen ("Icarus Dream Suite"), so in some ways it might conjure a feeling of familiarity with those in the know of the history of classic metal, while at the same time, paying respects to the craft of the wise. It all felt right and once I had the name cemented I went about the task of finding the other members to fulfill the destiny starting with the chosen one, lead singer, Matthew Bizilia. A trek that would take me across the country in the autumn of 2003 to start a new life in my hometown of Pittsburgh. Jason Myers (bass/keyboards)

ICHABOD (Stoner/Doom metal) (Boston, USA) (Formed in 1999) From a literary geek's point of view (yes, I'm a high school English teacher by day!) I first came up with the name based on having just reread and adored "Legend of Sleepy Hollow" by USA Irving. You know, Ichabod Crane, the Headless Horseman and all that...actually the very first incarnation of the band was called "Headless" based on the Horseman. However, we found out there was another band by that name, so we had to shift gears. In brainstorming a new name, we filled a notebook with ideas, none of which stuck. I went back to my original inspiration for the "headless" name, Irving's book. The main character of course,

was Ichabod. Plus, the clincher was my further research into the name/word "Ichabod," which I found out loosely translates to "Inglorius," or "the glory has departed". This concept really fit our thematic approach, a general dissatisfaction with everything which we see as imperfect ourselves, our relationships, our cities, our states, our countries, our world, the universe. All of it imperfect and we expressing our angst at that...but still managing to spot the beauty cocooned within it all. During the period of history whereby Ichabod would have been a common name, there was a belief that names with such seemingly pessimistic meanings would ward off evil spirits, as the name would have branded that person already corrupt. So that's what we are...imperfect, Inglorius beings seeking a reunion with the perfect...spiritual, mental and physical growth in the direction of "the light" as channelled with music. Not in a religious sense, as we are followers of no particular creed, but more in a phoenix rising from the ashes way. A single red rose growing in an apocalyptic, barren landscape. Musically we strive to be that rose, thorns and all. Dave Iverson (guitars)

IMAGIKA (Power/Thrash metal) (San Carlos, USA) (Formed in 1993) We decided to use the name because of the book by Clive Barker with the same title. We just changed the spelling to its current form. To the band it's had an open ended meaning that doesn't pigeon hole us into one genre within metal. It could mean anything really. Plus it just sounds cool. Steve Rice (guitars)

IMPERIAL BATTLESNAKE (Retro NWOBHM) (Chicago, USA) (Formed in 2004) In June 2003, we played our first gig as Bloodlust Horizon, but were still in the midst of an innerband squabble over the name. Matt Perry, from the band Bible of the Devil, told me that they had played with a band called Battlesnake once, "too bad they had taken the name" he added. But when I looked them up, I found out he had misread; they were called Rattlesnake. However, there was a band in Wicken, England called Battlesnake and I didn't want to bite their style either. That’s when I had the idea of adding Imperial, it made us seem like we were better than the average Battlesnake. But the bass player, Christanza, said he would never be in any "I sunk your battleship band". I had to ask several local musicians that he respected to tell him the name was awesome before he would acquiesce. Wes Nile (vocals)

IMPIOUS (Thrash metal) (Trollhattan, Sweden) (Formed in 1994) Back in 1994 when we formed the band, I was simply browsing through a dictionary and stumbled onto the word “impious” by accident. We chose to name the band Impious because it's short and easy to remember, and it reflects our religious beliefs just perfectly. The word itself comes from Latin and means "without God" or “Godless". Valle Adzic (guitar)

INMORIA (Power metal) (Bollnas, Sweden) (Formed in 2008) I came up with the idea for the band name after I watched the Lord of the Rings for about the fiftieth time. When some of the characters were on their way to enter the dwarfs mine called “Moria” it just came to me. So all I had to do was to put “In” in the beginning and then Inmoria was born. The atmospheres in the mines are so dark and depressing so I thought that it would be perfect for Inmorias music. And basically it means that the five of us are in that environment. Danne Erickson (keyboards)

INTO ETERNITY (Progressive metal) (Regina, Canada) (Formed in 1997) I wanted to pick a band name that wouldn't label us death metal. An example would be Deicide, Cannibal Corpse, Obituary, Death, ect. Our music was more progressive sounding so I wanted the name to reflect that. I remember reading an interview with Dave Mustaine and he said his band could have been more successful if their name wasn't Megadeth. Some radio stations didn't like such an "evil" name I guess. Megadeth still was huge anyway, but that story always stuck in my head, so I kept that in mind when I was picking a name. Most cool band names were already taking in the mid-90s so I ended up going with the first song that I wrote for the band in 1996, "Into Eternity". These days I'm glad I picked that for a name because it really seems to fit us. Tim Roth (guitar/backing vocals)

JAG PANZER (Power metal) (USA Springs, USA) (Formed in 1981) The name comes from Jadg panzer. A division of panzer tanks led during World War II. We thought the name was heavy like our music and no one else would think of it yet always remember it. Harry Conklin (lead vocals)

JUCIFER (Sludge metal) (Athens, USA) (Formed in 1995) We went through a bunch of names in the first couple years of our band. We'd play under a name for a show or a few shows, then move on to something we suddenly liked better. As far as we knew, we might keep changing names forever. Then along came “Jucifer”. A show was coming up. It was gonna be kind of a big one, a festival with pretty much every popular local band in town. We weren't into whatever name we'd been using most recently (Battlestar? 13 Year Old? Football Widow?) and we'd agreed we wanted something new. On the fateful day, we each worked day shifts at two different restaurants. I was a waitress, which didn't afford that much time for creative thought. But Edgar was a dishwasher. In the kitchen that day, the radio was tuned to NPR. Playing in the periphery of Edgar's mind as he washed was the newly unfolding saga of the O.J. Simpson murder case. Pundits discussed the horrific nature of the crime and the wholesome image of the accused. Phrases blurred together... "The Juice"... "If he did it, if he's guilty, then he's the devil himself"... "The Juice is Lucifer!” Edgar's mind spun a new word, “Jucifer”. He thought it was pretty good. He thought it implied a mix of sweet and evil that seemed to fit our music. One of the people working with Edgar that day was a guy with vastly different tastes. Edgar decided to test “Jucifer” on that guy, reasoning that his opinion would be the opposite of right. And the guy responded with "that's the worst band name I've ever heard". Edgar figured he was onto something. We met after work and Edgar told me about “Jucifer”. I hated it at first. It sounded stupid. I told Edgar and he was disappointed. We walked in silence. Now, the word was caught in my mind. It felt kinda itchy and good. I said it aloud. It felt good to say. I could envision yelling it from an audience. Could imagine it being chanted. All right, I told Edgar. I think it's all right. We can be Jucifer for a while. Soon after that, some people wanted to put out a record for us. And there wasn't anything better to put on it than Jucifer. Sixteen years later, it's still with us. Nevermind the annoyance of lecherous dudes pronouncing it “Juicy Fur,” or people mistakenly spelling it “Jewsifer,” or the stoned hippie who once changed it to “Juicy Grooves”. Or the fact that my trace of southern accent always makes it sound like “Juicyfruit”. The name still invokes something deliciously malevolent, and thousands of shows have provided evidence that it is, indeed, functional for chanting. Gazelle Amber Valentine (guitars/vocals)

JUNKYARD (Hard rock) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1987) When I was first trying to put the band together I had a couple of simple rules I was trying to follow. The band name needs to be: 1. Easy to spell and easy to pronounce. 2. Either tell you everything about the band or nothing at all. The first name I wanted to use was “CRACK”… then the drug exploded and ruined that idea. The name “Junkyard” actually came from the title of the third record by the Birthday Party, Nick Cave’s first band. I am a huge fan of the band and that record, and I really liked the name. I think it gave us room to be who we really were in an era where most of the rock bands were all hair spray, make-up and make believe. Chris Gates (vocals/guitar)

JPT SCARE BAND (Psychedelic rock) (Kansas City, USA) (Formed in 1973) At the time we became the JPT Scare Band, there were other bands popular at the time like ELP and ELO. I seem to recall being amused by our band having a similar theme and JPT seemed to roll off the tongue, even if nobody would be rolling it but us in the band. You see we were truly a basement band with a fan base countable on both your hands and feet. The Scare thing came along, I believe because we tended to scare people who would listen to our music. It was never quite clear to me if it was the sheer loudness or the dark eerie feel of the music that did the scaring but there was definitely some scaring going on with this band. We had our gear setup in a big, dark, stone basement with an interesting double door incinerator midway on one of the walls. We rented this house from our landlady, Amy, an 85-year-old slumlord immigrant from Germany, who lived next door to us. This anecdote may have played into the naming of the band: there was a party coming up and we needed lots of room for the throng we invited and went about cleaning up the place. There was a bunch of old broken furniture and a large rug that took up half of this really big basement, so Gregg and Terry and Jeff decided it made sense to remove the stuff by sending it up the chimney. And so while the band played some exceptionally dark music several friends fed the fuel to a blazing fire. In fact, the fire was the only light in the basement which added to my personal fright. It was quite exhilarating playing really loud music and watching the flames dance around the room and light up the faces of those lucky souls who were feeding this blazing fire. This is one influence in our name; another was that our house was located in the heart of the ghetto in the early seventies. We would listen to serenades nightly that consisted of police sirens, helicopters and frequent gunshots. The helicopters would provide an interesting light show when they would shine them on our house and others in the neighbourhood, looking for whomever it was that had raised their ire.

So that’s how I remember it, we liked the fun of the acronym and lived in a scary time, in a scary place and played very scary music. It made a lot of sense at the time. Paul Grigsby (bass/backing vocals)

KAIHORO (Stoner metal) (Karhula, Finland) (Formed in 2002) Our band name is taken from the movie Bad Taste by Peter Jackson. My little brother wanted to form a new band where he himself didn't participate, so he collected the best dudes in town and made us form a band called Kaihoro. It’s a good name, good movie. Harri Pikka (guitar)

KAMCHATKA (Stoner rock) (Varberg, Sweden) (Formed in 2001) The band name comes from a place in north-east Siberia. We felt that the nature of that place is one of a kind on the globe and would describe our music very well. Sulfar lakes and volcanoes are quite an inspiring landscape. It feels like the band is working in that same dynamic nature as the Kamchatka nature is known for. Tobias Strandvik (drums)

KATHAARSYS (Progressive black metal) (Galicia, Spain) (Formed in 2002) “Catharsis” is a Greek word meaning "purification," "cleansing" or "clarification". It is derived from the infinitive verb of Ancient Greek translated as “katharine” meaning “to purify, purge" and adjective Ancient Greek “kitharas” meaning “pure or clean”. The term in drama refers to a sudden emotional climax that evokes overwhelming feelings of great sorrow, pity, laughter or any other extreme change in emotion, resulting in restoration, renewal and revitalization in members of the audience. So we thought that our music was on this way of feeling "a sudden emotional climax that evokes overwhelming feelings of great sorrow, pity, laughter or any other extreme change in emotion, resulting in restoration, renewal and revitalization". So for us was the perfect name as a band. We changed some letters on the original Greek word just to find a unique name not used for any other band. Jose Luis Montans (vocals/guitars)

KHANATE (Doom metal) (New York City, USA) (Formed in 2001) Band name was inspired by readings of Mongolian rulers in the 12-13th century. Khanate= land ruled by a Khan. At one point Ögedei Khan was in control of the largest amount of physical land ruled by a monarch in human history. Stephen O’Malley (guitars)

KIDD HAVOK (Hair metal) (West Palm Beach, USA) (Formed in 1989) When I started Kidd Havok, it was because we got rid of our singer and the name belonged to him. I brought John on board about a week after the switch. We were at his apartment in West Palm Beach, USA working on new lyrics, band pics and promo ideas so people would know that we were the same band just a new singer and name! I was really young when I started out in the scene in NYC and USA (I was just 17) so most of the older guys would call me kid, I hated it but it stuck. So we used that and added a "D" to make it look cooler, but we thought it didn't have enough umph to it. So John and I wrote down about 50-100 combos till he came up with Havoc. Change a "C" to a "K" and there it is! It was 1989ish so misspelling names was cool. Scot Marcs (guitar)

KILLWHITNEYDEAD (Deathcore) (Greensboro, USA) (Formed in 2001) It's a play on words. It’s a play on the phrase "kill whitey dead”. I just happened to know a Whitney at the time the band was being formed and it fit and was different for band names at that time in 2002.

Matt Rudzinski (vocals)

KIN OF ETTINS (Doom metal) (Dallas, USA) (Formed in 2004) After the last band I was in was threatened with a lawsuit, I decided to find as unique a name as I could find, as well as one that both fit the concept of the band and denoted the proper weight for heavy music. Then one day as I was reading an ancient Viking poem from Iceland called “Voluspa” for the umpteenth time I happened across the line: "I recall the kin of ettins which gave me life in ages past". The phrase "kin of ettins" stuck in my mind. It's most basic translation would be something along the lines of “blood of giants,” but there's more to it than that. In Norse mythology, all life is related to the ettin, even the gods and goddesses. So the name Kin of Ettins not only has a connotation of enormity, but for those who would look deeper it also contains a suggestion of humanity's connection to divinity and even the entire universe. I've always believed that when we humans make music, art or anything creative that honestly conveys our true emotions and inner selves, and then we also connect with our inner divinity. Or, to put it in more colloquial terms, we become closer to God. Justin Jotun Delord (vocals/guitar/keyboard)

KYLESA (Sludge metal) (Savannah, USA) (Formed in 2001) Our original drummer, Christian Depken came upon the term "Kilesa Mara" while doing some research online. We were struggling to find a band name so we were all doing some research and plugging in themes and ideas to see what we could come up with. We all liked the meaning behind the term Kilesa-Mara and thought it could be unique to the sounds we were producing. We changed the spelling to "Kylesa" to make it more our own. We also thought it'd be easier to pronounce (although we were proven wrong!) The term “Kilesa Mara” is a Buddhist term and its direct translation means “demons of defilement”. It's a term that depicts things that hinder one from reaching an ultimate state of enlightenment or nirvana; the main Maras are greed, aversion and delusion. We thought that the name fit our music and mentality rather well; the name Kylesa certainly fits the vibe of the band. The title to our second record, To Walk a Middle Course is also influenced by the term and the Buddhist doctrine and a lot of our lyrics are about balance and the cruelties and struggles of life. Laura Pleasants (vocals/guitar)

LABYRINTH (Power metal) (Massa, Italy) (Formed in 1991) Some years ago (1991), me and the other former member Olaf Thorsen, we were watching the film Labyrinth. The thought was: Labyrinth could be also a really good name for the band. It fit very well with our kind of music that is a mix of different elements (powerful, melodic, aggressive and technical). Our music is a kind of Labyrinth where getting lost. Andrea Cantarelli (guitar)

LACRIMAS PROFUNDERE (Gothic metal) (Waging Am See, Germany) (Formed in 1993) My brother came to our rehearsal room and we discussed the future band name. Our former name was Dark Eternity, but we didn’t like the name, the design and the sound of it so we talked and talked and talked and suddenly he took a Latin dictionary out of his pocket; don’t ask why he had a Latin dictionary in his pocket, I don’t know because he and no one in the band ever had a lesson in Latin. He found these words like “lacrimas profundere” in it and this means something like "to shed tears". You know, we were young and we were drunk, so we liked it! Oliver Nikolas Schmid (guitars)

LAIR OF THE MINOTAUR (Thrash/Sludge metal) (Chicago, USA) (Formed in 2003) I chose the name because there's nothing more metal than a big gnarly minotaur, holding a bloody axe, about to unleash carnage. Steve Rathbone (vocals/guitars)

LAND OF TALES (Melodic metal) (Finland) (Formed in 2006) The name comes from our lyrics. They are tales about life. We wanted our name to tell what kind of band we are. We wanted it to describe our music. We had few names on the table, but none of them really hit. Then Kristian invented the name "Land of Tales". First we didn't believe that there wasn't already a band with that name, but after "Googling" we were sure that this was the perfect name for our band. We used a dictionary and the internet, but still the name came from the brain of Kristian. Palle (keyboards)

LEAVES' EYES (Gothic/Symphonic metal) (Ludwigsburg, Germany) (Formed in 2003) My husband and I had just married, in July 2003, celebrating our honeymoon in Ireland, renting a house with a superb view on the Atlantic Ocean at a lonely spot by the Irish west-coast. We were like just-married couples are, deeply in love and very romantic! One night by the fire, my husband, Alexander, looked into my eyes and suddenly said "aaaaw, your blue eyes”. Then I had the idea, as we'd been searching for a band name for quite a while, "Why not combining my eyes with a homophone of my name, Liv?" The word "leaves" almost sounds like my first name and is even connected to nature, and trees, which I've always loved, growing up in the Norwegian woods. "Brilliant idea,” Alexander, said. From that day on, Leaves' Eyes was born, moreover, a few months later our first album "Lovelorn," and soon thereafter our son, Leon. Liv Kristine (vocals)

LEVERAGE (Power metal) (Helsinki, Finland) (Formed in 2005) We were finishing our promo CD in early 2005, and it struck us that in order to get something going with the thing we had to decide on the band's name right there and then. Pekka Heino (our singer) and I had been passing ideas for some time already, but anything that we had come up with had sounded too conventional or typical for a heavy rock band's name. I was a semi-pro American football player for some years earlier, and I always liked the word “leverage” as it stands for something physically positive in a contact sport. Like something you can gain over an opponent if you're good enough. We were having a break at the studio when I

just happened to ask Pekka what he thought of the word, like in what is leverage to you, he had no clue. He liked the sound of it, anyway. We suggested the name to the rest of the band, and as soon as our drummer Valtteri came up with the logo idea that we thought was cool as hell, that was it. It is not your typical heavy rock/metal band name or a band name all together, and I've learned over the last couple of years that it also has many meanings in financing and whatever, but for us it is the name of our band. Tuomas Heikkinen (guitars)

LILLIAN AXE (Glam metal) (New Orleans, USA) (Formed in 1983) I came up with the name after seeing the Stephen King movie Creepshow. There was a scene in the movie where a skeleton of a bride was floating in the window of a young boy. She was wearing the wedding dress and veil. It inspired me to use the name of a senile elderly woman as the moniker for the band. I have always been a huge fan of horror movies and the unknown. Creepy and Eerie were my favourite magazines and everything about the unknown fascinated me and still does. The word axe just fell into place. I remember the exact street corner I was on when" Lillian Axe" popped into my head. Veterans Memorial Blvd. and Houma Blvd. That was the scene of the crime! Everyone who heard it loved it and the name was born that night! Steve Blaze (lead guitar/keyboard/backing vocals)

LION’S SHARE (Power metal) (Sundsvall, Sweden) (Formed in 1987) In the very beginning we had an English guy writing our lyrics. We asked him for a name suggestion too. He gave us a huge list but strongly recommended Lion’s Share so we went for it. Lars Chriss (guitars)

LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT (Instrumental progressive metal) (New York, USA) (Formed in 1997) The name came up while we were at Millbrook Studios in upstate New York. John Petrucci was browsing basically and just opened up a book that he was reading that he knew had some scientific/metaphysical sounding names and sure enough this one really hit the mark! He stated it out loud to all of us and we thought, "Awesome, the band has a name!" It felt right and had a catchy ring to it, so it stuck. Jordan Rudess (keyboards)

LITTLE CAESAR (Glam metal) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1989) We all came from all parts of the country, NYC, Philly, Detroit, East L.A. and West L.A. and we felt like some sort of gang with the common thread holding us together was the soul and R&B and rock and roll influences on our music. It set us apart from the other L.A. bands. Ron Young our singer is a big fan of movies and came in with the idea of the old Edward G. Robinson classic mobster movie Little Caesar also in the states in the late 80s early 90s there was a pizza chain called Little Caesar. So we loved the idea of the gang movie aspect and we figured if you like pizza you would like our band Little Caesar. Loren Molinare (guitars)

LOADING DATA (Stoner rock) (Paris, France) (Formed in 1999) The band was created in 1999. At first we were called Four-Track Junction. But it was too complicated to pronounce and in 2001 I decided to look for a new name. It was the beginning of widespread Internet here in France. I’d spend hours on flash sites that wouldn’t load because the connections were too slow. All I’d see on the screen is “Loading Data” written, with a bar desperately trying to load, and I thought being the ear of the internet, the name made sense. Most people usually think we’re an electronica band when they hear the name but there’s nothing electronic in what we do. Just good old amps and instruments. No keyboards, no computers. The last touch is that my nickname is Lo. Lo (vocals/guitar)

LUNA MORTIS (Death metal) (Madison, USA) (Formed in 2001) The name is Latin, and most closely translates to “deadly moon”. We feel it fits because of the Eurometal style of our music, and that the moon has traditionally been viewed as a female entity in most mythologies and we have a female singer. Brian Koenig (guitar)

LUNGBRUSH (Thrash metal) (Chicago, USA) (Formed in 1995) We got our name from a Saturday Night Live skit I believe with Chris Farley. Our music is influenced by various punk and metal bands. We enjoy funny/gross things and when we heard about the skit we thought it would be a good name for the band at the time. Jeff Homes (guitar)

LYZANXIA (Thrash metal) (Angers, France) (Formed in 1996) The name comes from the medicine lysanxia, which means in old Greek: LYS: to kill, ANXIA: anxiety. LYSANXIA: killing Anxiety. This medicine is prescribed for mental depression or strong alcoholism. A friend of us came out with this idea when we started the band. He actually had a list of medicines on him because his mother was working in a psychiatric hospital. When we heard the word “Lysanxia,� we had the feeling that this word would be the perfect response to our music. We changed the "S" in a "Z" to get the name protected in an entertainment category. We like the contrast between the violence of our music and what kind of mental states you would be after taking a Lysanxia. It makes you smooth and makes your mind is smoky! David Potvin (guitars/vocals)

MADDER MORTEM (Progressive metal) (Oslo, Norway) (Formed in 1993) When we first started out, back in 1993 or so, we called ourselves Mystery Tribe. In 1997 we recorded a mini-CD. It was mainly thought of as a demo, something to send to labels. By then we'd discovered that there was another band out there called Mystery Tribe, and using somebody else's name wasn't the best starting point for trying to land a deal. So we needed a new name. Of the Mystery Tribe line-up, there was only me and my brother BP (guitar) left, and the music was quite different from those days too. So we started talking about it and talking and talking and talking. I've been part of the naming process with other bands and with other kinds of projects, and it's usually tiresome and difficult and takes forever, and that's how it was for us as well. I mean, we were putting a name to what was, at least to us, the most important thing in the world. And I think you know, somewhere in the back of your head, that if things work out, you'll be living with this label for the rest of your life. We had some other suggestions up for debate as well. I think one of the more popular ones was Mephisto's Rose, and I'm extremely happy with not going with that one. But remember that this was before this whole gothic thing ended up being one big cheesy marketing stunt; we were just death metal kids that just had started listening to the 3rd and the Mortal, for instance, and were quite taken with that feeling of dark romance. Also, there's always the issue of non-native speakers using English, it is more difficult to pin down the connotations of words. But finally, we ended up with Madder Mortem. I think we got the "Madder" part from one of my dad's color charts (he's a hobby painter, and was using a lot of oil paints then). Madder is a deep red/purplish color, quite beautiful, and quite in keeping with the somewhat sombre preferred color scheme of young metallers. There are also the links to "mad" as in "insanity," which I guess appealed to us. Then we sort of stuck on the "Mortem" (Latin for "death") I think partially inspired by Poe's "Masque of the Red Death," and partially because we thought it was a badass word. And so we've been working under the name of Madder Mortem since 1997; twelve years and five albums now. Agnete M. Kirkevaag (vocals)

MADKING LUDWIG (Doom/Stoner metal) (Montreal, Canada) (Formed in 1997) I've always been intrigued by the story of King Ludwig II of Bavaria, better known as Mad King Ludwig. We just liked the way that sounded as a band name. Turned mad and king into one word to make Madking Ludwig. Stephane Bellemare (vocals/flute/clarinet)

MEATJACK (Stoner/Doom metal) (Baltimore, USA) (Formed in 1993) Before deciding to call ourselves Meatjack in 1993, our band was called Stranger than Fiction since 1989. In 1993 we officially filed for a trademark for STF. Before it was approved we received a large package of papers from a lawyer who represented a Stranger than Fiction from USA. We were asked to change our name or they were threatening legal action. We consulted with a lawyer who told us that since they could prove that they had been using this name in commerce since 1988 and we'd only been using it since 1989 that most likely we would lose a court case (along with the time and money it costs to fight a court battle obviously). So we decided to change our name, which ended up working out for the better because at that same time we were also losing a major member of STF and changing our sound/style to reflect more what the remaining members were interested in musically. The only concept behind the new band name was to find something that sounded cool by taking two words that wouldn't necessarily go together and sticking them together in the hopes that a similar legal situation would not happen to us again several years down the road. We compiled a list of words that we liked the sound of and/or that we thought might work nicely with another word on the list. At a band meeting I just read down the list of words. The word "meat" was on the list. I remember saying something to the effect of "something with "meat" in it?" and our drummer at the time, Mike Hill, without missing a beat blurted out "Meatjack!" (However, I don't remember "jack" being on the list). It was the first thing anyone had said that wasn't just us trying to crack ourselves up by suggesting silly shit. I think we all kind of thought, "hmmmm? that could work!" We gave it a day to sleep on it and see if we still dug it and we did. I remember personally liking the ambiguity of the name. I like imagery and words that can have ambiguous or even multiple meanings. Brian Daniloski (guitar/vocals)

MEMORY DRIVEN (Progressive/Doom metal) (USA City, USA) (Formed in 2008) I came up with the name back in 1998 as the title to a demo for my band Cor. I was referencing my own habit of living in the past and also referencing how we as humans use our memories of pain to minimize the pain we will feel today. For example, if a child burns his or her hand on a stove more than likely they won’t put their hand there again. Dennis Cornelius (guitar/vocals)

MERRIMACK (Black metal) (Paris, France) (Formed in 1994) Merrimack is taken from a book by Graham Masterton. It's a word coming from the old Celtic language ("Morior-Mac") meaning "infinite depths," used for describing a marine pit/chasm without end. Every boat approaching to its proximity was swallowed by this pit. The signification for this is obviously a parallel with "hell". Perversifier (guitar)

MINSK (Doom metal) (Peoria, USA) (Formed in 2002) Drawing its nominal inspiration from a remote Belarussian city nestled deep amidst the inbetweens of the East and the West, a city that has been burned to the ground on several occasions only to be rebuilt like a Phoenix rising from its ashes. Tim Mead (synth)

MNEMIC (Industrial metal) (Aalborg, Denmark) (Formed in 1998) The band name was suggested by our very first singer, Mark Bai. He mentioned the name to me and Rune (second guitarist), while being in some park drinking on a Friday afternoon. We thought it sounded cool, cause no one could pronounce it, and on top of that we wanted something completely different sounding. Mircea Eftemie (guitar/keyboards)

MONOLITH DEATHCULT (Brutal death metal) (Kampan, Netherlands) (Formed in 2002) When we started the band in 2002 we were brainstorming about a strong and massive sounding name like Rammstein. Then I came up with “Monolith�. A giant massive colossus/sculpture. That name represents the music we wanted to make and shines a bright light over our megalomania. Then we discovered that there were some 15 other bands which called themselves Monolith so we started thinking again. I remembered from some Guns n’ Roses biography that the rock band the Cult called themselves in their earliest days the Southern Deathcult so we added Deathcult to the name Monolith. Michiel Dekker (guitars/vocals)

MOONSORROW (Pagan metal) (Helsinki, Finland) (Formed in 1995) The name was taken from the Celtic Frost song "Sorrows of the Moon". Ville Sorvali (bass/lead vocals)

MORGAIN (Folk/Doom metal) (Samorin, Slovakia) (Formed in 1995) I took this name from a book, where there was a female hero with the name Morgain. I chose this name for two reasons. I really liked that female hero as it was finally something different than the other fantasy books. I chose the name Morgain for a reason that there was a really low possibility that some other band will use the same name. Richard Zajac (vocals/guitars/drum programming)

MORTAL SIN (Thrash metal) (Sydney, Australia) (Formed in 1985) Back in the day; 1985 to be exact, the new sounds of thrash metal were just starting to filter through in Australia. I had already grown up with the sounds of Sabbath, Zeppelin, Iron Maiden etc... So when it came time for me to actually be in a band, thrash metal was what I wanted to do. The name of the band was everything, so having a cool name, or "the heaviest name" was high on our priority list. "Mercury" was one of my first choices (being a heavy metal) but everyone thought it might make us sound like a Queen cover band or something! Then when someone mentioned "Mortal Sin" there were screams of "Fuck yeah!" everywhere. Mat Maurer (vocals)

MOS GENERATOR (Stoner rock) (Bremerton, USA) (Formed in 2000) A few years before we formed, our drummer Shawn had a 26" Ludwig lick drum that he had left out in an open garage. Through winter and spring it had gathered a good amount of moss on it hence the name "the Moss Generator". In 2001 when we were recording demos for this yet unnamed band we were having a hard time getting a kick drum sound and I said "I wish we had the mos generator" and the band name was born. We then obviously took one S off of Mos, for reasons I can't remember now. Tony Reed (vocals/guitar/keyboard)

MOSS (Sludge/Drone/Doom metal) (Southampton, England) (Formed in 2001) We chose our name in tribute to the ancient forest that surrounds our home, and the certain images that moss evokes; it grows on tombstones and graves, old trees and in damp and dark places. Fitting for our music I think. Olly Pearson (vocals)

MR. BIG (Hard rock) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1988) We got the name for our band from a Free song called “Mr. Big�. We all idolized the band and their four on the floor ballsy blues raw rock and roll sound. And it looks good on a T-shirt. Eric Martin (vocals)

MR. PLOW (Stoner rock) (Houston, USA) (Formed in 1996) Most of our songs make some reference to some pop culture icons, and the name Mr. Plow is the title of an episode of the Simpsons. When I first heard the suggestion, I didn't catch the Simpsons reference; I just thought it sounded kind of heavy. I think most of the time bands get their names when everyone involved finally hears one they don't collectively hate. We didn't all love Mr. Plow to begin with, but at least we didn't all hate it. Finally we just accepted it as who we were so we could get down to rockin'. Greg Plow (bass)

MUGGS (Hard rock) (Detroit, USA) (Formed in 2000) Danny and I, being best friends since high school days were always hanging out. One place we patronized, the Cadieux Cafe on the eastside of Detroit, located on Cadieux Road had a particular bartender that grew on us. His name was Danny Jacobs, an aspiring actor at the time.

Danny Jacobs was a charming guy, and a guy who could tell a story. He had sayings as well. One of which was “mug”. I think he had a play in which he used the urban slang, “mug” in place of any noun that fit. For example, he'd say, "Man, it's packed up in this 'mug'. Translation, "Man, this restaurant is packed". So we took this saying and ran with it. At rehearsals, we would talk to each other using the term “mug”' for every noun they could. Danny would say, "Hey Tone, pass me that 'mug'," referring to my guitar toner. Finally, rehearsals were going swimmingly and we had to get ourselves a stage name. Our drummer Matt said, "Hey, we should call ourselves the Mugs". The name fit. We added an additional “G” to the Muggs to separate ourselves from a coffee mug. Now we are the Muggs! Tony DeNardo (bass)

MUSTASCH (Stoner rock) (Gothenburg, Sweden) (Formed in 1998) We were discussing names of the band. And at the time, me and the other guitarist, we were living together and we were listening to Black Sabbath, on vinyl, and we had a party, of course and we listened to Black Sabbath, and we had listened to lots of records. And when we were getting them out, we put back the vinyl in the case sleeve. We noticed that everybody, every single guy in every one of our favourite bands, they had mustaches. Like Uriah Heep and Black Sabbath. It was Deep Purple, it was Freddie Mercury. “Hey, there are mustaches all over. Why don’t we call the band Mustasch?” And I said, “yeah, right. Very clever. Could we call ourselves like bathtub or something?” But then we were getting out on a rock club, and we were, “Yeah, that’s kind of cool". But of course, most of the people, they don’t know the history, the background of the name, how it came up. So lots of people in Sweden, they say, “What a silly name, you motherfuckers". And I say, “What’s Screaming Trees?” Ralf Gyllenhammer (vocals/rythmn guitar)

MY DYING BRIDE (Gothic/Doom metal) (Halifax, England) (Formed in 1990) The name of the band is inexplicably linked to the death of my mother back in 1988, which plunged my life into complete and inescapable darkness and grief, from which I have yet to fully recover. When our group came to fruition, a name was sought and being 1990 the death metal scene was snowballing to greatness so we naturally shunned all the other corpse murdering virgin slaying bible burning nonsense for something much more heart rendering, as that was where our musical outpourings would come. With great tragedy so close to me, a name akin to my feelings was required, of lost love and hopeless dreams. Two names were banded about; My Dying Bride or My Dying Child, and Bride won out due to the utter forlorn state one would succumb to at such a time; and the fact that I

am a diehard romantic lost in 17th century England unable, nay, unwilling to escape to modernity. My Dying Bride compose tunes in dark and melancholic ways that leave many a folk whimpering and heart-weary and yet, they always come back for more because as we all know too well, a tear shed is a lesser burden to carry. Aaron Stainthorpe (vocals)

NADJA (Drone metal) (Toronto, Canada) (Formed in 2003) Nadja was originally a solo project which I considered the “flipside” of the music I made under my own name. Accordingly, Nadja is my first name backwards. I changed the “I” to a “J” in order to reference both Andre Breton's surrealist novel and the mid-90s vampire movie starring Peter Fonda and Elina Lowensohn. Aidan Baker (guitars/vocals/piano/woodwinds/drums)

NEBULA (Psychedelic stoner rock) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1997) The name came together from mostly digging and listening to Hawkwind at the time of naming the band. After Fu Manchu, Ruben Romano and I came up with a few names and just agreed on Nebula. We had a few other names but Nebula seemed the best and most like space rock Hawkwind sound. And that’s what we were going for. Eddie Glass (guitar/vocals)

NECRONAUT (Thrash/Death/Groove metal) (Stony Plain, Canada) (Formed in 1997) This was our singer’s brainchild. He made up a word kind of, he put "Necro" Latin for death, together with "Naut" Latin for traveler or explorer, you know like astronaut, aquanaut, now Canada's own beer induced thrash metal band, Necronaut! Marlo Tetzaff (guitar)

NEGURA BUNGET (Black metal) (Timisoara, Romania) (Formed in 1994) We started a band under the Wiccan Rede name, in 1995. After a short while we realized black metal was a natural choice for us, musically, but also spiritually, and means a lot more that we thought when we started. So we needed a new name, to mark our deeper and total involvement into it. That's how Negura Bunget was created. Negura Bunget is black fog rising from a never-ending deep dark forest. It's a symbolic name that somehow tries to picture the kind of musical and spiritual atmosphere we'd like to create through our music. The two words are also from the oldest Romanian language substrate, symbolizing this way tradition and authenticity.

Negru (drums/percussion)

NERVECELL (Death/Thrash metal) (Dubai, United Arab Emirates) (Formed in 1999) I came up with the name for the band because I wanted to capture the feeling where we all go through when people around or the surrounding we are faced with gets on your nerves and leaves you frustrated. The word “cell” is added to bring about that feeling of no escape that you are locked in so to speak. So basically, Nervecell means being in a frustrated state of mind and looking for an outlet to break out but in fact you are locked in this cell with nowhere to go and no one else to talk to. Barney Ribeiro (guitar)

NIGHTRAGE (Melodic death metal) (Gothenburg, Sweden) (Formed in 2000) We got our name from a song title of my ex-band Exhumation's last album Traumaticon. We had a song there named "Nightrage" and Gus G and I thought it's a cool idea to have this name like a continuation of the Exhumation music in a way. Marios Iliopoulos (guitar)

NIGHTSTALKER (Stoner rock) (Athens, Greece) (Formed in 1989) When we were kids back in late 80s, early 90s, and we started the band, we wanted a name really quick to have two or three tracks for a compilation. Our singer asked "how do we call in English, someone that hangs out at nights?" Someone said "Nightstalker," and that's it. Andreas (bass)

NORTHER (Melodic death metal) (Helsinki, Finland) (Formed in 2000) I was searching for a good name for the band from a dictionary back in year 2000. I spotted Norther (meaning “northern wind or storm”) and thought that it would suit our type of melodic

death metal from Finland. It's cold here; there are storms from the north here somewhat often. It felt like a perfect band name. It's also short and easy to remember. Kristian Ranta (guitars/clean vocals)

NUMBAH TEN (Stoner rock) (Linkoping, Sweden) (Formed in 1993) We simply found the name in an American slang dictionary. We had several names to choose from but we decided it was odd enough and suited fine to our music. The expression “Numbah Ten” comes from the Vietnam War and means "the worst that can happen" and Numbah One means "the best that can happen". If you add "Thou" after Numbah Ten it means the worst that can happen but a thousand times worse. Our second demo is called "Thou" and it can’t probably get any worse than that! Mattias Johnsson (vocals/guitar)

OCEAN CHIEF (Stoner/Doom metal) (Mjolby, Sweden) (Formed in 2002) Ocean Chief was actually the title of our first demo. Back then, in 2001, we called ourselves Fluidage at first, but in a drunken moment, a friend thought that Ocean Chief would be cooler. Bjorn Andersson (guitar)

OFFICIUM TRISTE (Doom metal) (Rotterdam, Netherlands) (Formed in 1994) When we formed in 1994, we had a vision concerning our sound and style so we needed an appropriate name for the band as well. Our former guitarist and founding member Johan Kwakernaak simply flipped through a Latin dictionary until he found a name that suited the band. Hence Officium Triste was chosen and it means something like a “mourning ceremony,� which is a great name for a doom/death metal band. It somehow sounds mysterious yet it is a moniker that stands out. So it fits perfect for a band like us. Pim Blankenstein (vocals)

OMEGALORD (Stoner metal) (Philadelphia, USA) (Formed in 2001) When Mark (singer) and I started playing together, Mark had just left Insatanity (which he had named); to get away from the death metal scene which he had become legendary to form a stoner rock/metal band. I had been listening to a lot of power metal at the time and joked that my stage name was going to be Lord St. Christ. Mix that frame of mind up with another obsession, the movie Omega Man. Well a few beers after rehearsal and us thinking about naming the band after that movie culminated with the fact that there was already a band named OmegaMen and I jokingly suggested Omegalord. Which also means "the God of the End Times". Jason (guitar)

OMNIUM GATHERUM (Melodic death metal) (Karhula, Finland) (Formed in 1996)

The name was found from the medical Latin dictionary of our previous synth player’s father in the middle of the 90s when all these Latin band names came to the metal field in Finland. The funny part is that I never liked that name at that time when it was chosen. I think that at first it didn't mean a thing but later on, we came to be what the moniker stands for, and I like the name very much now. We have simply become an Omnium-Gatherum; a freak circus, a gathering of strange kinda fellas all looking at different directions doing music that is overall quite a strange kind of a mixture. So, strange kind of gathering, a mixed bag or peculiar mixture that is. It's like Mötley Crüe translated to Latin. Markus Vanhala (guitar)

ORESUND SPACE COLLECTIVE (Space rock) (Malmo/Kobenhavn, Sweden) (Formed in 2004) The name comes from the body of water that separates Sweden and Denmark (Malmo and Copenhagen), Øresund. I came up with the name as we are a collective of musicians, a flexible changing line up of people in the collective who mix and match all the time. Space for that we make space rock music. Øresund Space Collective. It works well as half the members are Danish and half Swedish, mostly from Malmo area. Scott (synth)

ORPHANED LAND (Doom/Death/Middle eastern folk metal) (Petah Tikva, Israel) (Formed in 1991) Orphaned Land is a paraphrase for the holy/Promised Land. We are from Israel, and in our eyes, this land is filled with blood instead of harmony, peace and holiness, therefore Orphaned Land. Kobi Farhi (leading chants/growls/narrations/choir/backing vocals)

PALE DIVINE (Doom metal) (Glen Mills, USA) (Formed in 1997) The idea for the name was basically born from the spiritual content of many of the lyrics we were writing at the time. Though we ARE NOT A CHRISTIAN band as some would think. The basic theme seemed to be that no matter what the circumstances, mankind will almost surely fail to live up to his/her intended spiritual potential. The divinity aspect refers to the idea that we [humans] are descendants of some "divine entity�. Unfortunately in spite of the inherit "goodness" we may possess we still fall short [or "pale"] of our intended purpose here on earth. Thus, we are the Pale Divine...the "misguided," the "lost"...the "confused". Darin McCloskey (drums)

PEGAZUS (Power metal) (Melbourne, Australia) (Formed in 1993) I came up with the band name many, many years ago, back when I was still in high school during the early 80s probably around 1982. Our high school used to have a school emblem, which was a shield with a Pegasus horse in it, with some Latin writing around it. As soon as I saw the Pegasus in that shield, it just grabbed me right away and I knew it just had to become the name and symbol of a future classic heavy metal band. I decided on the unusual spelling with the Z, because it also incorporates the Greek God Zeus in the name of Pegasus and if you know much about mythology, then you would know and realize that both entities are related to one another. Pegazus is not only a name. It has the powerful image of a white winged horse ready to take on the world and that is the feeling we have always had as a band. Johnny Stoj (guitar)

PENDRAGON (Neo-progressive metal) (Stroud, England) (Formed in 1978) The name was chosen by our old drummer, Nigel Harris. We sat around in our bass player's bedroom listening to music when we were around 18 years old; I think some people had been smoking pot. We were looking for a name for the band, and because our music was from the progressive rock genre, Nigel thought it would be a good idea to come up with a name that

conjured up myths and legends and was also very English. Pendragon was the name of the father of King Arthur, Uther Pendragon. That was back in 1978. Nick Barrett (guitar/vocals)

PHASED (Stoner rock) (Basel City, Switzerland) (Formed in 1997) We were called Phased 4°F in the beginning. That came from Mercury 4°F the band I was in before. We had an album entitled Phased, which was a play on the words “face” and “phase” somehow. There was on the cover a painting of an alien/baby face I'd done. When we split we'd agreed no one would continue as Mercury, so I kept the 4°F and added the Phased. When we reduced our five piece line-up to just three, we dropped the 4°F and so we were actually a new band. We'd changed the music too... from noise and sludge to space-rock and stoner (and now you can hear some doom too). Phased actually was a lucky choice, as it reflects our music. We use a lot of phasers. Also, our music has this kind of spacey sound to it, even when we're heavy and slow. The name doesn't really point to a set genre, so we're also free to develop and move into other musical areas. It's always helpful if a name doesn't have you restricted to certain genres or fans. It should just be a name that is nice and good-looking, and open to any curiosity. That said, Phased does of course point to what we're interested in: space-rock and weird musical ideas. Chris Sigdell (vocals/guitar)

POISON THE WELL (Post-hardcore metal) (Miami, USA) (Formed in 1997) It's a literary fallacy; it means to create a bias before someone has had time to come to their conclusion on their own. We picked it because there weren’t any bands at the time with a name like it and it just sounded different. It's pretty cut and dry. At this point it's just a name for our band. Chris Hornbrook (drums)

PONAMERO SUNDOWN (Stoner rock) (Stockholm, Sweden) (Formed in 2005)

Well we split up our former band Ampgeezer and started a new one in November 2005. The name came from our initials which we made an anagram of PE; Peter Eklund, ON; Ola Nilsson, AM; Anders Martinsg책rd and RO; Rolf (this was the first two letters of a singer that we actually even didn't rehearse with). The initials eventually ended up as Ponamero and to add a bit of stoner/desert touch to the name we added Sundown as well. So there you have it...Ponamero Sundown. Anders Martinsgard (guitar)

POOBAH (Hard rock) (Youngstown, USA) (Formed in 1972) I got the band name from a girl I went to high school with in Boardman, USA, near Youngstown. She had been nicknamed long before I got to the school. I did not know her, and thought it was somewhat mean for the older boys to call her that, but we did not question the older, wiser seniors. I was a freshman, and was warned by older guys that she could try to stab you with a rattail comb if you called her Poobah. They told us to be ready to run for it, if someone yelled out the name, because she might stab you by accident! It was kind of like a mystical tale, typical of schools, where the poor incoming freshmen were terrified for their lives. She was said to be a big, tough biker type chick with a black leather jacket and blond beehive hair, and would beat you up if you even looked at her too long. We stayed out of her way, fearing the beating of our lives. The name Poobah stayed in my mind, and when my old band Biggy Rat broke up, and we needed a new band name, I suggested it. Phil Jones (original bassist) almost fell over laughing, as he went to the same school! We saw her in the audience one night (one year later) and thought she was going to get us! Jim Gustafson (vocals/guitar/bass)

POWER QUEST (Power metal) (Southampton, England) (Formed in 2001) After leaving Dragonheart, which is now known the world over as Dragonforce in 2000, I decided to form a new melodic power metal band with Steve Scott (my former colleague in Dragonheart). We were searching for a name that we thought would be appropriate and after a while we decided on Power Quest. The "Power" element seemed appropriate for the genre and the "Quest" element seemed to work on a number of levels. Firstly, it kind of fitted the fantasy/sci-fi type lyrics and secondly we knew that it would be a long road to make a success of the band... almost a quest in its own right. Steve Williams (keyboards/backing vocals)

PRAYING MANTIS (Hard rock) (London, England) (Formed in 1974) In the early years (pre-Mantis, circa 1973) I formed a band at furniture Design College with fellow student/guitarist Peter Moore. I then asked my brother if he would join on bass and soon after we met Stan Cunningham. After hearing his great voice in the lavatories one day, we asked him to join the band (at the time known as Junction). We decided on recording a new tune we'd just written called "Golden Rainbow". When it came to overdubbing the vocal part, we had Stan singing the main part and Chris, Pete and myself came in with chorus backing vocals. We all held our arms up in a boxing/kung-Fu style; heads bopping from side to side. At that point Stan collapsed in a heap of laughter. When he managed to contain himself he said (in a Welsh accent): "Hehehehe... Ya shoulda seen yas all. Ya looked like three Prayin' Mantis' backin' singas!!!” Tino Troy (guitar/backing vocals/keyboard)

PRESIDENT EVIL (Stoner/Thrash metal) (Bremen, Germany) (Formed in 2002) Our singer came up with some ideas because we needed a name for playing a concert. We looked for some mighty evil sounding name with a little smile in it to take not all too seriously. So we decide that this game with words President Evil reflect our music and our expression against any dictator as well. James Lars (guitar)

PRETTY BOY FLOYD (Glam metal) (Hollywood, USA) (Formed in 1987) Pretty Boy Floyd was a name given to us by Kim Fowley. Charles “Pretty Boy” Floyd was a gangster from the old days and we thought it fit the band and that's the story. Kristy Krash Majors (guitar)

PRETTY MAIDS (Melodic heavy metal) (Horsens, Denmark) (Formed in 1981) The name was basically picked from a book called Pretty Maids Em' All in a Row, which I believe guitarist Ken Hammer came across somehow back in 1981. The name and the reason for it as such, has no bigger meaning, what so ever, it was just a name that was picked because it sounded cool and looked cool on a t-shirt. Ronnie Atkins (lead vocals)

PRIMAL FEAR (Power metal) (Esslingen, Germany) (Formed in 1997) We had ten names for the band sorted out, reduced them to five and then to the final two and ended up with Primal Fear from a movie with Edward Norton and Richard Gere. Ralf Scheepers (vocals)

PRO-PAIN (Groove metal) (New York City, USA) (Formed in 1991) "Pro" as in positive attributes. "Pain" as in struggle and or hardship. Band translation and or meaning: there are positive attributes to be gained as a result of struggle and or hardship. What doesn't kill us makes us stronger. Gary Meskil (bass/vocals)

PSYOPUS (Avant-garde metal) (Rochester, USA) (Formed in 2002) Psyopus was put together from "psy" meaning psychological or psychortic, and "opus" meaning musical composition. In our way this means psychological music. Our music is a little more "heady" than the status quo's. The original drummer and I were living together towards the time of the band's origin and we realized we needed a different name than the band's original name Stranglefuck. We had pondered whole heartedly in every creative direction we could up to a certain point and were just lost from a name that we felt possessed a unique quality. I still remember laying on his bed while Greg sat at his computer when the idea for combining the prefix "psy" with the

"opus" came to my mind. When it dribbled out from in-between my lips, we thought it was a fresh idea and matched the aim of the music well. Chris Arp (guitar)

QOPH (Progressive/Psychedelic rock) (Stockholm, Sweden) (Formed in 1995) We took the name from the meaning it has in Tarot. The Tarot card "the moon," is also named QOPH and symbolizes (among other things) illusion. QOPH is also a Fenician/Hebrew letter that has turned in to the letter Q in the western alphabet. From the beginning, the letter QOPH meant “monkey� (look at the letter and you can see the monkey from behind swinging its tail). Our band name has caused us numerous problems, misunderstandings and other long since forgotten incidents during the years (our first album was released 1998). Everyone is pronouncing it in their own way, so we now have quitted telling people how it is pronounced correctly [kop]. Although our name during the years periodically has made us hate it, it makes you laugh hearing new absurd pronunciations all the time. Filip Norman (guitars)

QUEEN ELEPHANTINE (Stoner/Doom metal) (New York, USA) (Formed in 2006) In Egyptian mythology, there is the goddess Satis who is worshipped on the Elephantine Islands. Indy (vocals/guitar)

RAGE (Speed metal) (Herne, Germany) (Formed in 1984) Rage wanted to use the name "Furious Rage" originally. The record company we were signed to in that time (1984, Noise Records) suggested to leave out the "Furious" as only "Rage" would have been more catchy. The band liked the idea, so we got our name. Peavy Wagner (vocals/bass)

RAMESSES (Death/Doom metal) (Dorset, England) (Formed in 2003) The band was named by drummer Mark Anthony Greening. He wanted an Egyptian name, as he himself was named after Mark Anthony from the film Cleopatra, with Elizabeth Taylor. The main inspiration for the name was the ruler Ramesses II, or Ramesses the Great as he was commonly known who reigned for over 60 years and fathered over 100 children. His power and legacy are the most heavily felt in Egypt. The Ram Family

RAM-ZET (Avant garde black/Gothic metal) (Hamar, Norway) (Formed in 1998) I didn't really have any good ideas for a band name, so on the first demo, I just called it Ram-Z, as a link to my family birth name Ramseth. But even if the pronouncement in Norway is similar with Ramseth, it's not the case in English, so I changed it to RAM-ZET, and had a little chat with the label (Spikefarm) regarding the name. They thought it sounded good, so I decided to keep it, even if it turned out to be a band after a short while. Henning Ramseth (vocals/guitar)

RAVEN (NWOBHM/Speed metal) (Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England) (Formed in 1974) Well, back in 1974, my brother Mark, original second guitarist Paul Bowden and myself sat around a table writing lists of prospective band names. After the endless stupid names were eliminated, “Raven” seemed the least annoying! So we went with it! And once that monumental task was accomplished, and then we went back to learning how to play our instruments! John Gallagher (vocals/bass)

RED FANG (Stoner metal) (Portland, USA) (Formed in 2005) We were struggling for a long time with band names. We were actually calling ourselves Panda at the first show we played. Then we found out there's another band called Panda. So we had to start over. I guess because there was something in the water around the time (early 2005); we were sort of focused around animal-related names. Obviously the animal thing got kind of crazy, but whatever. So, we were trying different claw/fang/talon ideas, and were sort of narrowing in on Black Tooth which I pretty much hated since it sounds to me way too much like "Bluetooth”. So different versions of Black Tooth, Black Tusk, Red Tooth, Black Fang, etc., were being tossed around, when finally someone said "Red Fang”. None of us were like "fuck yeah!" but more importantly, none of us were like "fuck no," either. It was pretty much the first name we came up with that none of us hated. Aaron Beam (bass/vocals)

RED SPAROWES (Post metal) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 2003) We originally chose the name "Sparrows," but due to legal reasons to do with another band by that name, we had to change it. We initially just changed the spelling to the old English "Sparowes," but a lawyer friend of ours told us that weren’t enough of a change, so we added "Red". We chose red because we liked the emotional quality of the color red (to us; energetic, passionate, violent) and thought it was relevant to our music. We chose the name after being inspired by a T.S. Eliot poem called "Preludes". It evokes an aesthetic that we thought was well in line with the songs we had been writing, and the band name itself stood out to us as being memorable and distinct. Greg Burns (bass/pedal steel)

RHINO BUCKET (Hard rock) (Van Nuys, USA) (Formed in 1988) We had just formed and we were offered a gig at a club called the Metro back in 1987. The club owner had to submit his ads for the weekly music paper that day and gave us only about three hours to come up with a name. Well, first things first, we went out and got quite a bit of beer. The original drummer, Rick Kubach, had grown up in Hawaii and wanted to call the band "Rhino Chaser" which is apparently a type long board used for surfing. And then, the original guitar player, Greg Fields, suggested we call the band "Bucket of Lard" or was it "Bucket of Shit"? I forget which one it was he wanted. Ever the eternal optimist, that Greg. For a nano-second we considered "Tee-Pee of Ill Repute" but even we had some standards. After a few more beers, we reached a compromise and named the band "Rhino Bucket". It was only supposed to be for one gig and yet here I am 21 years later, still in band that should have taken the time to sober up before deciding on a name. Georg Dolivo (vocals)

RIBSPREADER (Death metal) (Sweden) (Formed in 2002) I think we simply wanted a fitting name for a death metal band. And then we came across this device which is used during surgery as well as when disembowelling animals after a hunt, and that was named Ribspreader. We were actually rather baffled too that the name wasn’t taken already, so we went ahead and used right away. Rogga Johansson (vocals/guitar/bass)

ROBOT LORDS OF TOKYO (Doom/Stoner metal) (Columbus, USA) (Formed in 2004) I picked the name Robot Lords of Tokyo out of the lyrics from a Clutch song called "10001110101" off their Robot Hive/Exodus CD. Clutch is absolutely one of my favourite bands,

and their singer Neil Fallon is, in my opinion, one of the most consistently brilliant lyricists in the history of rock. As soon as I heard the phrase "Robot Lords of Tokyo" in the song, I knew instantly it would make a cool band name. Although we don't sound identical to them, Clutch is definitely a musical influence on us as well, so it was a way to pay homage to a great band. Rick Ritzler (drums)

ROLLERBALL (Stoner rock) (Queensland, Australia) (Formed in 1998) In 1997, I was the guitarist in a band call Load with drummer Johno (Beeswax) Keen. We really needed to break away with a new project so Johno and I started talking about forming another band. The concept was quite clear before the line-up had been determined. We wanted to put together a classic mid 70s style band. I have always been a big fan of the film Rollerball. The film is set in 2018 but had all the fashion and political incorrectness of the 70s. I really wanted to create a sound free of 80s and 90s influences. We started to refer to the future band as "the Rollerball Project". When the band was finally put together in early 1998, the name stuck. Dave Talon (guitar)

RORCAL (Sludge/Doom metal) (Geneva, Switzerland) (Formed in 2006) The rorcal is one of the biggest whales in the world. We thought it would perfectly illustrate our music which is supposed to be slow, dark and powerful. Bruno da Encarnago (bass)

ROSETTA (Post metal) (Philadelphia, USA) (Formed in 2003) When we started this band it was just going to be a not so serious side project. Someone suggested that we have the band name be something feminine sounding. One of us blurted out

the name Rosetta and we all liked it. We found out later that Rosetta is the Latin name of a nebula in Monoceros, the name of a satellite and an orbit type. This fit really well with what we do as most of our music is spaced theme. Dave Grossman (bass/vocals)

ROTTING CHRIST (Black metal) (Athens, Greece) (Formed in 1987) We were kids, we were rebels, we were black metallers, and we wanted something that could shake Greek's back then fundamendalistic social base and what better than calling our band: ROTTING CHRIST. A name that raised storms of resistance in the conservative community but we kept up with that name because we simply think that everyone has the right to express himself as he really wants and as individuals we think that all religions are rotting. Sakis Tolis (vocals/guitar/keyboard)

ROX DIAMOND (Hard rock) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1986) Back in the mid-80s, and all the way up until we were almost done recording our debut album between 1990 and 1991, we were called Casanova. Our deal on Funhouse/Polygram was signed under the name Casanova. Casanova was the name that was on all our demos, and all of our shows we played on the Sunset Strip were under that name. At the last minute, our management got a call from EMI in Germany, informing us that there was a band in Europe called Casanova, who had a deal, and if we wanted the name we would have to pay them a large sum of money. We had four days to come up with another name, trademark it, and give it a new logo and information to the label in Japan, and get the presses rolling. In came the name Rox Diamond. Our bass player at the time, Rick Falco, had been in a club band (Rox Diamond) which had long been broken up for quite some time. We were pretty desperate for ideas when Rick suggested Rox Diamond. We called his old singer, who owned the name, and he gave us his blessing and permission to take it, trademark it, and we would own it. Paul Daniels (vocals/keyboard)

ROXX GANG (Glam metal) (Largo, USA) (Formed in 1985) First and foremost I was a huge T.Rex fan. One day as a kid, fantasizing of the day I would have my own band, I started to think of what I would call it. On a school notebook I had written the names of all my favourite groups (as kids will do). T.Rex was prominent. Next to it I wrote R.Gang. As a kid I likened the idea of being in a band to that of being in a gang. Rock 'n' roll outlaws who went from town to town raping and pillaging and moving on to a new destination before you could be called upon to answer for your misdeeds (a lifestyle Roxx Gang would soon put to practice). I also liked that everyone would find the name familiar i.e. the Our Gang comedy shorts. There was a bit of a pun or play on words. I think humor is an essential element in rock 'n' roll, one that is sorrowfully missing from many of today's acts. But what did my "R" stand for? Rock ‘n’ roll of course! We would be Rock's Gang. I didn't come up with the double X spelling until years later. I thought it gave the name sort of an x-rated feel (triple x's would have been a bit too much, don't you think?) I carried this idea in my mind for years and sang in many bands before I found the right “gang " and was confident enough to propose we call ourselves...Roxx Gang. Kevin Steele (vocals)

ROYAL COURT OF CHINA (Hard rock) (Nashville, USA) (Formed in 1985) In the mid-1980s we read an interview with Jimmy Page regarding his then current band, the Firm. In the article he mentioned that he initially wanted to call his project with Paul Rodgers (of Bad Company fame), the Royal Court of China, referring to the musicians who entertained the Emperor as written in Marco Polo’s journals. However, because of Page’s past problems with drugs and the vague use of the term “China” when referring to exotic heroin, Page decided on the much more creative moniker of the Firm. It was 1986, we were a young band and we needed a name but never could come up with anything remotely interesting. Hence, we stole the name the Royal Court of China, telling folks we chose it because of its exotic relationship to nothing in particular. The story doesn’t end there. In 1987, as we were finishing our major label debut album for A&M Records, we received a call from our lawyer asking us where we got the name. Apparently, Paul Rodgers was forming a new band and wanted to use the name Royal Court of China, but we had already licensed it with the blessing from Jimmy Page and the help of

none other than our new attorney Stephens Weiss who had been Zeppelin, Bad Company and Swan Song Record’s attorney. Paul Rodgers has not spoken to us since. Chris Mekow (drums/vocals/percussion)

RPWL (Progressive rock) (Freising, Germany) (Formed in 1997) I didn't want to have a name because I've always thought that band names are boring somehow...but our record label didn't want to release a record without a we took the initial letters of our names: (Paul) Rissettio, (Chris) Postl, (Kalle) Wallner, (Yogi) Lang on drums, bass, guitar, vocals/keyboards. Yogi Lang (vocals/keyboards)

SACRED STEEL (Power metal) (Ludwigsburg, Germany) (Formed in 1996) When we sat down in our rehearsal room in the summer of 1996 and thought about a band name we wanted to make sure that the new name would be unmistakeably a total metal name! A name that would leave no doubt about our direction for the years to come: to be a 100% dedicated, no compromise, no bullshit, ultra-true heavy metal outfit! We wrote down about 100 words that we all connected with metal somehow and cut that down in the end to four words: angel, steel, battle and sacred. Then we had two names to choose from Battle Angel or Sacred Steel. Battle Angel sounded too much like a Sanctuary tribute band so we decided on using the other possibility. Gerrit Mutz (vocals)

SAIGON KICK (Hard rock) (Miami, USA) (Formed in 1988) Saigon Kick came from a band word play session, a favourite band pastime. The story goes that a slew of movies with Vietnam themes were being released at the time of the bands formation: Hamburger Hill, Platoon, Full Metal Jacket, etc... So, during a typically drawn out discussion about band names, somebody asked: "Is Hollywood on some sort of Saigon Kick?" Chris McLernon (bass)

SAINTS AND SINNERS (Hair metal) (Montreal, Canada) (Formed in 1990) The name came from Richie Sambora, Bon Jovi’s guitarist. His manger was taking care of our business and Richie thought of the name for us. Believe it or not it was that simple, I wasn’t too crazy about it at first but it stuck to us. He had a line in one of his solo tunes that said “sinners will be saints and saints will be sinners”. We were going to go with Dirty Harry or Hell’s Kitchen, but the record company wanted Saints and Sinners. Jeff Salem (drums)

SAMAVAYO (Stoner rock) (Berlin, Germany) (Formed in 2000) The name "Samavayo" comes from old Indian language Sanskrit. Samavayo means “to come together or unity” and it was a celebration for the sun. We found the name in a book about sun mythology and, well for us it’s a beautiful name, because we are a unity since nine years from foundation and every concert (we played more than 300 shows) it’s a unity with our fans and Samavayo is a live band, so this name means a lot for us. Andreas Voland (bass)

SAMSARA BLUES EXPERIMENT (Psychedelic rock) (Berlin, Germany) (Formed in 2007) It happened back in spring 2007 when I read Hermann Hesse’s "Siddhartha" for a second time. Actually it still seems to me that this book is the only one in my "not so small" collection which I really do need. So one of the keywords in this book is the term "samsara" (the cycle of life and rebirth in Hinduism and Buddhism in order to achieve a "soul’s mission) which is kind of counterpart to the term "nirvana" ("final salvation"). So I had this word on my mind for such a long time (even before when I read the book a first time though not so clearly back then). Name it an inner voice which some day told me the phrase "Samsara Blues Experiment". Actually I also often write song lyrics as result of a "vision" or even a dream. That’s how the name came up, a vision. Of course I love the blues, always a big part in my life as a musician and I like to experiment with sounds, instruments and so on. Think this name pretty much defines our music. Christian Peters (vocals/guitar/keyboard)

SATELLITE CIRCLE (Doom/Psychedelic rock) (Umea, Sweden) (Formed in 1997) We had a band meeting back in 1997 and we were looking for a name that we wanted to be both cool, a bit psychedelic and with a "the" because we wanted a retro feel to name. We messed around with the word "circle" for a while, and then we came up with the old Celtic Frost song called "Circle of Tyrants". Then we took "Circle" from the Celtic Frost song and "Satellite" from a band from our home town who were called Satellite Circus, but they called it a day a couple of years ago at that time. All that was left was the "the" and we were ready to go. Jonas Ericson (vocals/drums/percussion)

SAVATAGE (Progressive metal) (Tarpon Springs, USA) (Formed in 1978) Savatage was formed originally under the name of Avatar. The band released its first records as such. The name Avatar was already taken and the band was informed that it had to change the name. Criss Oliva's wife came up with the idea of Savatage which was a play on the words Sabotage and Avatar. Chris Caffery (guitar/backing vocals)

SERGEJ THE FREAK (Stoner rock) (Goteborg, Sweden) (Formed in 1999) I was watching the news one day and they talked about this Russian dude and how he liked to dress in baby's clothing. In the same broadcast there was another Russian dude who had killed his mother because she wouldn’t bring him his dinner to his room. And I just thought, what freaks. Niklas (vocals)

SHADOWS FALL (Melodic death metal) (Springfield, USA) (Formed in 1995) The origin of the name actually comes from a DC/Vertigo comic book series. I used to work at a comic book store for several years and that is where it came to my attention. It was a short run of six issues that just had some amazing artwork and dark themes that seemed to fit the idea of the band at its inception. The name sounded like a cool band name, so we did it. Although, the secondary story is that it is from the lyrics of "the Hunter" by Dokken. Matt Bachand (guitar/vocals)

SIENA ROOT (Stoner rock) (Stockholm, Sweden) (Formed in 1999) It was in the late 90s we started to call the band Siena Root. In the sense that blues is blue, hard rock is black, and reggae is pan African colored, this music has the color of siena. It is a

warm, earthy color, originally from the region of Toscana, today this color is well known among graphic artists around the world. Because the sound has music roots that go deep, it was natural to let "root" be a part of the band’s name. Besides, all the great bands from the dawn of rock have a name of two words where one of them is a color, like Pink Floyd, Deep Purple, Blue Cheer, Black Sabbath etc. But that was something we happened to think of later on, still it didn't make us chance our minds for the name. Mr. Billy Love (percussion)

SILENT FORCE (Power metal) (Krefeld, Germany) (Formed in 1999) The name comes from a German proverb: In der Ruhe liegt die Kraft. Ruhe-Silence. ForceKraft. The translation is something lke: In silence there is strength or in silence there is force. It means if you do something slowly, for example working on a piece of art, or another example, cooking, if you do it slow and easy the result will be great and powerful. Alex Beyrodt (guitars)

SILENT RAGE (Hard rock) (Hollywood, USA) (Formed in 1987) It happened in the mid-80s. Up until that time we were known simply as the band called "Rage" based in the South Bay beach area of Los Angeles. We were recording demos for the purpose of releasing our first album. Upon our completion of its recording we researched just to see if there were any other bands with our same name or any album titles named Rage for that matter. Remember there weren't too many ways to find this out except through record store catalogues, rock magazines and actually making calls to record labels to verify, there was no internet yet to go and "Google it" to find out! We did find a few bands called Rage. One was a New York based rock band with a few releases already out and also a popular pop band. So we contemplated changing our name Rage altogether and thought about coming up with a new one, but we'd already established a foundation and a good following in L.A., so when deciding about it and taking our sound into consideration, we came up with the old double meaning name title Silent Rage, due to our sound. It was a combination of a melodic and a hard sound. I'm a melodic based lead singer and we sang with a lot of three part harmonies, but our guitars, bass and drums were hard rock. It's a lot like some other big names such as Led Zeppelin, Quiet Riot, Black Sabbath etc., and yes a motion picture came out around that same time starring Chuck Norris that was a hit, so it didn't hurt that our new band name was in the spot light. People even asked if we had songs in the soundtrack. Jesse Damon (vocals/guitar)

SISTER SIN (Old school metal) (Gothenburg, Sweden) (Formed in 2003) The name comes from the song with the same name. It’s a Swedish underground band called "Machine Gun Kelly" who only released one album in the mid-90s who made the track. Liv (our singer) had just joined our band back in 2003 and we needed a suiting name that would imply we had female somewhere in the gang. I happened to listen a lot to that Machine Gun Kelly album back then and the name Sister Sin stuck with me and sounded kinda fitting for our type 80s metal music. Everybody liked the idea and we went for it. Dave Sundberg (drums)

SKINLESS (Brutal death metal) (Glens Falls, USA) (Formed in 1992) Quite simply we got the idea from a grocery store flyer for boneless skinless chicken. Noah Carpenter (guitar)

SKYCLAD (Folk metal) (Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, England) (Formed in 1990) Skyclad basically means naked or more literally “wearing the sky” and is to do with Pagan or Wicca rituals. It was chosen by our former singer and co-founder of the band Martin Walkyier when the band started back in 1990. Kevin Ridley (vocals/guitar)

SLEESTAK (Doom/Stoner metal) (Milwaukee, USA) (Formed in 2003) We chose the name after a couple of other attempts at a name, one of which was the Osiris Project. We found that name was very similar to another band already. I remember when we

decided to change our moniker that we were having band practice and I was standing there with my guitar going through a brainstorm and it just popped in my head and stood out. Sleestak was from the old Land Of The Lost, a 70s Saturday morning show which I adored for its twisted far-out sci-fi. The imagery evoked by the name was perfect for us; dark, psychedelic, epic, almost prehistoric. It's also the kind of name that doesn't limit us to a certain genre, which in a sense allows us freedom to write what we want, to always be expansive. Matt Schmitz (vocals/guitar)

SLEEZ BEEZ (Hard rock) (Netherlands) (Formed in 1988) Our drummer (Jan Koster) and solo guitarist (Chris van Jaarsveld) came up with the name. We knew we wanted a name that was different and easy recognizable. Sleeze Beez has a lot of E's and 2 Z's in it. It also described the content of the "package" pretty accurate. I must say we didn't plan to be put away as a glam metal band which we are still associated with nowadays. I guess the name put us in that corner. However we still enjoy the choice of name today. Don van Spall (guitar)

SLIK TOXIK (Hard rock) (Toronto, Canada) (Formed in 1988) We were looking for a name that had a little polish and a little grit much like our music, so we started to try and think of things that were opposites that sounded cool together. One of the main things we tried to remember was that we wanted it to be “Smooth and Deadly” which ended up being the title of our first E.P. release. And then Pat Howarth (bass) came in one day with this name “SLIK TOXIK” and we all just looked at each other and said “we're in!” Nicholas Walsh (vocals)

SOFA KING KILLER (Sludge metal) (Akron, USA) (Formed in 1999) This is the USA winter of 99/00: while carrying my drums to my car, I thought, "man, it is so fucking cold out; sofa king cold!" We still didn't have a band name and I thought that was kind of a funny play on words, so I kept thinking about other ways to use the sofa king word play. Then I thought, "oh yeah; we are So Fucking Killer!" Brad Thorla (drums)

SOLEFALD (Avant-garde/Black metal) (Oslo, Norway) (Formed in 1995) "Solefald" means "sunset" in Norwegian, it translates directly as "the fall of the sun". The name is taken from the artist Theodor Kittelsen's drawing "Solefald" where a rider from mythic times charges westwards towards sundown; or maybe he is the setting sun himself. This drawing can be seen on the Solefald release the Circular Drain (Inhuman Music, 2008). We chose the name because of its grand feel and Romantic allure, with antiquated Danish spelling adding to its patina. Solefald marks the end of the day and the beginning of the night. Cornelius von Jackhelln (vocals/guitar/bass/sampling)

SONIC DEBRIS (Progressive metal) (Norway) (Formed in 1999) The name originated from the song “Cosmic Debris” by the late Frank Zappa. We had a brainstorming session at our rehearsal space one night and talked about that song. We just changed out Cosmic with Sonic so it should not be too obvious. Tommy Nilsen (guitar)

SONS OF ALPHA CENTAURI (Stoner/Progressive metal) (Kent, England) (Formed in 2001) The band was formed by myself and Marlon King on the July 27, 2001. We travelled to Faversham on what turned out to be the hottest day of the summer that year and had gone swimming to relax having just been to our local record store. We had been talking all day on the train and then by the pool about forming a new band as we weren't satisfied with the one that we were currently doing. This band had Marlon on drums and we had a gig that night which we weren't particularly looking forward to from a musical perspective. We wanted to create something new and inspirational yet maintain complete control of all of the aspects so it was as good as it could be. That wasn't going to happen with the mates and the band that we were playing in that night! However, we had both worked together previously in a band called “Pariah” where we were both on our primary instruments (me - bass, Marlon - guitar) and that had worked well so we decided that would be the foundation in the approach to the new band. As the day continued to heat up we thought it best to think of a name to refer to the project privately. We discussed our intentions to develop a space rock theme to the band as we felt this gave us the most flexibility for unrestricted guitar work and song writing. We thought about something

involving the sun and then thought that we wanted to be more Avant garde to contemporary rock so decided to align ourselves and identity with our second nearest star instead; Alpha Centauri. As we sat in the blistering sunshine we thought about the people that had mentioned that they had mistaken myself and Marlon as brothers on a few occasions due to our similar appearance and mannerisms (especially language). As a result of this we decided to add that we were the “Sons of” something or someone else to reinforce this separate identity that we had recognised and acknowledged as an essential driver to the new project. So it seemed natural to combine the two. And so “Sons of Alpha Centauri” was born. Combined with the fact that “sons” can be interpreted as “suns” to give additional meaning of our initial idea and how we arrived at Alpha Centauri and the fact that we had sat discussing everything in the sun on the hottest day of the year it was perfect for us. Nick Hannon (bass)

SONS OF OTIS (Stoner rock/Doom) (Toronto, Canada) (Formed in 1992) I got the name from serial killer Otis Toole. I thought Otis was a cool, heavy name for a heavy band, and I never heard of another band called Otis at the time. When I started this band back in 1992, we were just called Otis. A few years later we added Sons of for legal reasons. A band from Boston just starting out called themselves Otis, so our record label at the time told us to change our name. Since we were already Otis for 3-4 years, we just added the Sons of. People already knew of us as Otis so it worked out. Ken Baluke (guitars/vocals)

SPACE PROBE TAURUS (Stoner rock) (Karlstad, Sweden) (Formed in 1992) We started out as Snake Machine back in 1993, but after a couple of years (1997) we just felt the name didn't really say much about our music (which draws a lot of influences from the late 60s psych/garage rock scene). So we decided a change was in order. I've always been a major sci-fi/horror movie guy and found a movie called Space Probe Taurus from 1965 (it's most common name is Space Monster though) and felt it was what we needed. I thought it sounded like a Strawberry Alarm Clock/13th Floor Elevators name so we took it. Sjoberg (vocals/guitar)

SPICKLE (Instrumental metal) (New Orleans, USA) (Formed in 1997) Back in 1997, Bret, Kenny and I used to be in a band called Dulac Swade. Out of this, we formed a side project. We always wanted to do an instrumental sort of thing so we just started writing a bunch of songs. Fuck singers, right? We just clicked from the get go. After a short time we had 20 or so songs written. A friend of ours in a rap group asked if we would like to open for his hip hop project at a club called Juimmy's. We said "O.K. why not, we're ready, right?!" About a half hour before we were scheduled to play, he came up to us and asked how to introduce us. Our incredibly inebriated bass player looked at him with crossed eyes and said "Spickle!� Paul Webb

SPOCK’S BEARD (Progressive rock) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1992) The name comes from the fact that Spock only has a beard in the parallel universe! We're the only band named after fictional facial hair from a parallel universe. It was a joke, when something weird happened, we'd say "Woah, man, Spock's Beard!" Alan Morse (guitar/vocals)

STAMPEDE QUEEN (Hard rock) (Calgary, Canada) (Formed in 1999) We were originally called Swank, we had done a few shows in Toronto and Whiskey A Go Go in Hollywood and realized we are not a band from Los Angeles; we are a band from Calgary, Alberta. We had decided to change our name to exploit where we are from. Our guitar player at the time Dan came up with a name Stampede Queen as joke and it stuck we originally did it to piss off cowboys, when we played the Calgary Stampede. Zack Daniels (vocals/guitar)

STOLEN BABIES (Avant-garde metal) (USA) (Formed in 2002) The quick gist of it is that "Stolen Babies" was the name of a song our old band the Fratellis had. Gil Sharone (drums)

STONER KINGS (Stoner metal) (Jyvaskyla, Finland) (Formed in 2000) I dubbed the band Stoner Kings back in 2000 after hearing Queens of the Stone Age, which I thought was a funny and absurd moniker for a band. A group of men calling themselves the Queens of the Stone Age, and not a single girl in the band. At the time I was working a cover sleeve idea based on the famous Raquel Welch movie 1 Million Years BC and I really dug her promo photo from that film. So here I was, tossing around ideas for a band name, looking at this picture of Raquel Welch garbed in some animal skin looking to the sky in trance as it were, and I thought "if there is a queen there must be a king too�. Hence the name Stoner Kings arose into my mind and it struck a chord immediately. StarBuck (vocals)

STONEWALL NOISE ORCHESTRA (Stoner metal) (Borlange, Sweden) (Formed in 2004) We were just playing around with words we kinda liked. "Orchestra" gives it an old fashioned vibe, and on the contrary, "Noise" gives it an alarming and modern feeling. Stonewall is just what it is, like a wall of fat sound, it's also an expression of refusing someone something by "stonewalling" them. We got used to it and thought it didn't make us think of anything else, that's why we kept it. Lots of people have had opinions about it though, which we just think is funny, that's better than no opinion at all. Snicken (guitar)

STREAM OF PASSION (Progressive metal) (Netherlands/Mexico) (Formed in 2005)

“Stream of Passion" is a fragment of the lyrics of one of the songs of our first album. For us it represents the drive and love we have for music and the strong emotions we wish to transmit with our songs; besides this, since our first album was written sending ideas and MP3s through the Internet we thought it would also be fun that we could relate the name also to the fact that the music also came to existence by streaming information over the world wide web. Martijn Peters (drums)

SUEDE BROTHERS (Hard rock) (Cleveland, USA) (Formed in 1999) We chose the name after a friend called Kevin and I the Suede Brothers at a show of his. We were wearing similar velvet jackets, and seeing as he was quite smashed, this name was fitting. The Suede Brother stuck as a name, and we decided to use it when we formed the band shortly after. Dylan Francis (vocals/guitar)

SUFFOCATION (Death metal) (Long Island, USA) (Formed in 1988) I chose the name after listening to the Morbid Angel album Alters of Madness. It was a title to one of the songs and I said that's perfect, it says it all that we suffocate with our music. Frank Mullen (vocals)

SUNN O))) (Drone metal) (Seattle, USA) (Formed in 1998) Named after our favourite amplifier (including logo). Stephen O’Malley (guitars)

SUPER HEAVY GOAT ASS (Stoner/Southern metal) (Austin, USA) (Formed in 1999) It started in 1999 when we were fishing for names for a new band. We had initially used the name NO2 for reasons unknown. The bass player happened to see a goat in a field from behind of course. He said, "Look at that goat ass" or "look at that, goat ass". Whether or not "goat ass" was used as a noun or pronoun I’m not too sure. We ended up using it as a joke for one night. A good friend of ours known as "Handsome Joel" decided that it would be amusing to place the words "Super Heavy" in front of the hideous name. It grew on us and we got more and more serious with the band but never swayed no matter how harsh the criticism. Our friend passed on a few years later being hit by a drunk driver. We did many benefits in his name for "a safe ride home" foundation. Now there is an award in Austin called the "SuperHeavyGoatAss award" for worst band name of the year. We’re proud to see it come up every year. Russell Abbott (vocals/guitar)

SUSPERIA (Black/Thrash metal) (Baerum, Norway) (Formed in 1998) When we formed the band in 1999 we worked under the title Seven Sins, but were warned by the label we signed to that some other band held the rights to the name and in addition, browsing the internet, there were hundreds of bands using the word Seven in one way or another. One day I was looking through my huge collection of horror movies, on VHS of course at that time, and in the middle of one shelf I found myself staring at the old Italian classic Suspiria by Dario Argento. The title had big red letters and caught my attention more than anything else on the shelf. I suggested to the guys we use that name and they agreed. We changed one letter, from I to E, just in case to avoid any legal matters. But that alteration made it look even better, and lighter to pronounce. I looked up the initial meaning of the film title and discovered it had quite a significant and old story behind it. "Suspiria de Profundis" (a Latin phrase meaning "sighs from the depths") is one of the best known and most distinctive literary works of the English essayist Thomas De Quincey (17851859). In one of many short essays in psychological fantasy De Quincey imagined three companions for the ancient Roman goddess of childbirth: Mater Lachrymarum, Our Lady of Tears; Mater Suspiriorum, Our Lady of Sighs; and Mater Tenebrarum, Our Lady of Darkness. This is the inspiration source to Dario Argento’s "3 Mothers" trilogy when making the horror movies; Tenebrae, Suspiria and Mother of Tears.

Athera (vocals)

SVEN GALI (Hard rock) (Hamilton, Canada) (Formed in 1987) The name is actually from the old movie that we all know about, in case you don't remember it. I think it was from the original book in the late 1800, the Trials of Trilby (something like that) than of course made into the movie, Sven Gali. Our first drummer Steve and I were friends for a long time before the band, TT was in the gang too. I met TT when I started to give him lessons on his bass. Me and my whole family adopted TT, taking him into our home and our hearts. Steve and I became friends when we were teenagers. I actually took Steve with me for a while when I played with Frankie Venom of Teenage Head, a famous Canadian punk/rock band. They are credited with one of, if not the first recorded punk shows back in the 70s. Even before the Sex Pistols! I was a huge fan of the band as a kid and learned to play guitar on their music. I was thrilled when many years later I got to play in the band. Frankie passed away two years ago from cancer. He's very missed. Steve's mom is a cool lady. She turned me and Steve onto this old movie. Thought it was hilarious mainly because we found that so much of the attitude still was very much alive in current music scene “mentality�. The whole idea of having favours done by the girls that follow the bands, especially in the late 80s and early 90s when the scene was a bit more brash, was just hilarious. I guess some things just don't change. We must have watched that movie a dozen times in a row that summer. After the Teenage Head thing, and Frankie Venom and the Vipers; another version of the band we gigged with, was almost done we hung around Hamilton, Ontario area talking about what kind of band or music we want to be into. I began studying classical stuff on the guitar with a local teacher that I knew of, Steve was into art at the time and was creating in all kinds of mediums and TT went away to the Minnesota area (I believe) with a girlfriend of his who was a local singer down there. During a gig far up north in a city called Thunder Bay, I got a call one eve and it was TT. He had broken up with the girl and needed rescuing. We jumped in a van and drove off looking for an intersection that he described somewhere in the States. Steve and I drove all night down one highway and finally came across a small town intersection that looked like the one he explained. TT didn't know where he was. He took a bus as far as he could afford at the time and we went hunting for a description. We did find and him and brought him with us to the show that following night and eventually back home to Hamilton. TT saw Dave and Andy playing in a cover band one night and called me to tell me about it. He said they were great, that there was something there. Not sure but maybe we could do something with them. They were, and we did. It was kind of funny because at that time I wasn't really into joining another band right away, Steve was into it but didn’t know the other guys so that would take some time to grow, Dave wanted to sing but again we didn't know each other and we were living about 45 minutes away from them and that is far for a band to get together to work. Andy lived near Dave and between the two of them they probably just went with it. Andy told me once that he thought it was good for a while; he would peel some licks off from me and probably just move on. That was a funny story when he told me about it one night. We all got together for a large amount of beer and trouble with the ladies (as became the usual) and in the morning, we were a band.

Sitting around trying to pick a name like so many other bands in the world all do at one point or another, we began explaining the Sven Gali name and movie, what it was all about, how it was funny and had so much in common with our current rock n' roll lifestyle, how the women came and went and the funny way that "us against the world" mentality fit us perfectly. Not to mention that Sven Gali hypnotized young women to get what he needed, in more ways than one. We had strippers buying us food, guitars and amplifiers...and did things for us that I won’t even mention here. We watched the movie, again and again... and we became... SVEN GALI! Gregg Gerson (drums)

SWALLOW THE SUN (Melodic death/Doom metal) (Jyvaskyla, Finland) (Formed in 2000) Well, it all began in a very basic way in the bar, and with very drunken boys trying to find out the name for the band. There was already the word "swallow" that would be in the band’s name but next day it wasn’t clear how the name came up, but someone remembered it was "swallow the sun". The name comes from our long winter time here in Finland. When winter comes it almost feels like something would swallow the sun from the sky because you don’t see it in ages. There’s also many Nordic myths about eclipse, something swallowing the sun, so this name fitted us well. Juha Raivio (guitar)

TAD MOROSE (Progressive/Power metal) (Bollnas, Sweden) (Formed in 1991) I chose the name for our band because I thought that it fitted us well. I got the idea from an interview with Michael Schenker in Guitar World Magazine a long time ago. He used to be known for his "wild behaviour" and still is perhaps, but he had now grown up and calmed down (yeah right!) Anyway, at the end of the story the journalist wrote: " maybe he wasn’t such a bad guy after all, just a tad morose". And that Tad Morose stuck to me, so I looked it up because I had no idea what it meant. The meaning was "a bit frustrated" or something like that. I thought that fitted us well, because we used to get a lot of shit for stuff that we hadn’t done (some I bet we had done though). Krunt (guitar)

TAINT (Stoner metal) (Cardiff, England) (Formed in 1994) Shortly before forming the band in Dec. '94, our then embryonic and soon to be ex-bassist came up with the name Taint. We were sixteen year old metal heads, and one boring day at school, bassist Drew had the name “Taint” on one of his school books. A few months and a line-up change later, and Taint became a real band. At the time, we were really influenced by the emerging post-metal/hardcore bands in the U.S., such as Tool, Clutch and Helmet. So, it made sense for us to stick with our new name, also as Taint means “to make imperfect” or “to blemish/scratch”. Jimbob (guitar/vocals)

TANKARD (Thrash metal) (Frankfurt Am Main, Germany) (Formed in 1982) So as we were called Vortex and Avenger first, we found the name Tankard in a dictionary. As we all loved to drink beer and tankard is an old English expression for a beer jug the name fits 100% to us! Gerre (vocals)

TEETH OF LIONS RULE THE DIVINE (Drone/Doom) (Nottingham, England) (Formed in 2001) The band is named after a track on Earth's second album.

Stephen O’Malley (guitar)

THANATOS (Death/Thrash metal) (Rotterdam, Netherlands) (Formed in 1984) We chose the name way back in 1984 because we were searching for a name with dark, deadly meaning, but we also wanted to avoid the English word “death” in our band name. Since me and the other guitarist had Greek and Latin classes we decided to use the name “Thanatos”. In ancient Greek, Thanatos was the “god of death” or the “personification of death”. Since we were one of the very first European bands that started playing a mixture of death and thrash metal, we liked the obscurity of the name and it also made us stand out between all the bands with death, blood, killer etc in their name. Stephan Gebedi (guitars/vocals)

THE BLACK LEAGUE (Gothic metal) (Helsinki, Finland) (Formed in 1998) I wanted the outfit's name to reflect that certain "mystical unity” that a full-fledged brotherhood such as a rock band should essentially have. The Black League as a moniker was basically born as a combination of various things. I remember thinking about Venom's LP In League with Satan and the mediaeval Black Death and the word "plague" (which somehow reminded me of "league"). In addition, I misheard Nick Cave in his song "Tupelo" shouting "Black league come down! Black league come down!" Had I read the lyrics, I'd have known it was actually "black rain" he was conjuring up. Hence, the Black League. Taneli Jarva (vocals)

THE HAUNTED (Melodic death metal) (Gothenburg, Sweden) (Formed in 1996) I’ve always used a song title from the band I was in directly previous to forming a new one. For example: When I formed Seance back in 1990, I had a band before that called Orchriste. Orchriste had a song called “Seance,” so that’s what I used for this new band. When I left Seance, and moved to Gothenburg to form yet another new band, I took a look at the song titles that Seance had. I chose a song called “Haunted”. I added "the" to make it sound more as an entity, and more precise. Haunted without the "the" sounded too vague. When we chose a name for the band

that became Seance, we were choosing between Seance and Witchery (Orchriste had songs with both these titles). We opted for Seance, but when later on when another band we were in needed a name change, we chose Witchery. These are the two bands I keep busy with to this day; the Haunted and Witchery. Both are named using the same process; old song titles become new band names. Patirk Jensen (guitars)

THEATRES DES VAMPIRES (Gothic metal) (Rome, Italy) (Formed in 1994) We decided to take our name from the Anne Rice book "Interview with the Vampire". So our name is homage to her! Théâtre des Vampires is the home of a Parisian vampire coven from the earlier books in Anne Rice's the Vampire Chronicles series, specifically Interview with the Vampire and the Vampire Lestat. Interview with the Vampire offers little detail about the history of Théâtre des Vampires, other than it being a theatre that mocks the existence of mortals. The vampire actors perform plays that utilize their vampiric traits, strength, movement, etc. and even drink blood in front of their audiences. Due to the nature of the establishment, the audience leave the production still believing what they have seen to be an act. We love Anne Rice's books and we like to think about a theater of vampires that pretends to play the vampires roles in front of an audience of human who think to watch a farce becoming instead their food. It's the real life that pretends to be fake on stage but it's deeply real…this is the theater...this is the life. Theatres des Vampires

THREAT SIGNAL (Melodic death metal) (Hamilton, Canada) (Formed in 2004) In 2004, my two guitarists; Rich Howard and Kyle McKnight; were brainstorming cool words that could be used in a band name. The only thing we cared about is it sounding cool and not being too long or hard to say/read. One came up with Threat, one came up with Signal and we put them together. I loved the name and wanted to use it. However, Kyle was against the name and didn’t want to be known as Threat Signal. I went ahead without his permission and posted some new demo songs online under the name. People loved the songs and loved the name and it stuck with us. Jon Howard (vocals)

THRESHOLD (Progressive metal) (Surrey, England) (Formed in 1988) We chose the name in 1989. It originally came up because bassist Jon Jeary was a fan of the Moody Blues and that was the name of their record label. The name also alludes to a point of

entry to somewhere new, taking the listener beyond his normal surroundings and on a journey into the unknown. Richard West (keyboards)

THUNDER (Hard rock) (London, England) (Formed in 1989) The name came from a song I'd written called “Distant Thunder”. Also, the guy who was producing our first album at the time (Andy Taylor of Duran Duran) had made a solo album called Thunder so maybe that was floating around in my subconscious somewhere. We all liked the name because it was like the music we wanted to make; big, loud, elemental and simple. Luke Morley (guitar/backing vocals)

THULSA DOOM (Stoner rock) (Oslo, Norway) (Formed in 1999) Basically we're a metal band, so we thought "what's brutal?" What's metal ya know something that says tough, epic and screams metal? So, Thulsa Doom is the name of the bad guy in Conan the Barbarian starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. The bad guy, Thulsa Doom, is an ancient Snake God with unlimited power and has no mercy for anyone. He is played by James Earl Jones in the movie. Tristan (vocals)

THY MAJESTIE (Symphonic/Power metal) (Palermo, Italy) (Formed in 1998) Well, we chose our name one night after rehearsals. We sat down and tried to utter some names, which we think sounded terrible, like "Broken Wings". It was really pathetic, and so we tried to say something else, something that had to do with the Middle Age, and sounded a bit ancient as well. Maurizio, one of our former guitarists, is fond of ancient English stuff, and said Thy Majesty. Where Thy is the ancient for Your....actually the very first name was Thy Majestie (as Majesty was written with “ie” as final letters in medieval age), but we thought someone could disguise it for a French word, so we used the modern Majesty...then we found up that a German band had been using the same name, and we swapped again to Majestie, declaring to the press that it had to be pronounced as Majesty though written in middle English, where the pronunciation stays the same!

Claudio Diprima (drums)

THY PRIMORDIAL (Black metal) (Mjolby, Sweden) (Formed in 1994) When we formed the band in 1994 we named the band Primordial. The reason was that the music we performed was basic black metal with a bit of harmonic and melodic inputs. Primordial can mean ancient, primitive, which was kind of perfect for the band at that point. The named was changed though because of the simple reason that it already existed another band from Ireland with the same name. This we found out through our first record company, they demanded a change, they suggested Primordial Sweden, we didn't agree on that, at that point we started to look around for a complete name change but we didn't find anything suited. Back then our first demo tape was fairly know in the scene of black metal, so a complete change of name would bring us back to square one promotion wise. Our bass player suddenly came up with the idea of adding Thy, that we all agreed on, it was like a first aid solution but that’s it, and the rest is history. Micke Andersson (guitar)

THYRFING (Viking/Black) metal) (Stockholm, Sweden) (Formed in 1995) The band name is taken from the sword “Tyrfing” in Scandinavian mythology; a cursed blade that appears in several tales and myths. In the early days of the band, we had few other names that we eventually found out was used by other bands. We also decided to add an "H" to the original spelling. I don't really remember if there was a deeper thought behind that, but we thought it looked good and it also makes the name our own in a way. Patrik Lindgren (guitar)

TIGERTAILZ (Hard rock) (Cardiff, England) (Formed in 1986) We originally started out as “Straw Dogs” and then changed the name to “Stagefright”. We did a few gigs as Stagefright and the band formed its image around this time. But it was clear the name didn't really represent what the band was all about. Pepsi Tate then came up with the name “Tigertailz” and I can't say I was that impressed with it. But he made the point that no other band would ever be called that and was pretty insistent about it. So, I ran with it and we changed the band's name and branding around that. We then started to get noticed as Tigertailz. Kerrang and other rock magazines picked up on it and that was that; Tigertailz we were. We did have a brief change of name to “Wazbones” in 1992 due to contract problems with Amuse America (our US label) who wouldn't let us operate under the Tigertailz name while we were in a contract dispute. This was eventually resolved and we then continued as Tigertailz. The final twist to the name tail was in 2006 when our originally singer Steevi Jaimz tried to register the Tigertailz name with the England Patent Office to stop us using it. He had some idea that he had a right to the name. We appealed to the Patent Office who took this through their tribunal dispute and we won the case. The Tigertailz name dispute is now used as case Law with the Patent Office. Jay Pepper (guitar)

TILES (Progressive metal) (Detroit, USA) (Formed in 1993) The original name was Standing Pavement. We released one tape. Our guitar player Chris Herin had talked to Gene Simmons of KISS and he had mentioned that the name was too long and we should think about t-shirts. Well when the first CD was being recorded we talked about changing the name and we decided we should. So, the long, very long process began. We had probably a hundred names. We used the elimination process to whittle them down. It took a long time. I did not like Tiles at first I admit but, now I like it a lot. As far as the reason for the name it is simple: It is neither negative nor positive. We would make the name by our music. It is also simple and easy to remember when leaving a bar or night club maybe a little buzzed. I believe the name came from our guitar player Chris Herin and I believe he got it from the Led Zeppelin song "Out on the Tiles," which means "town" or "city". Jeff White (bass)

TNT (Hard rock) (Trondheim, Norway) (Formed in 1982) The band name was based on an imaginary person called "Tormod Nilsen". We liked to think that his band’s name was the "Tormod Nilsens Trio" TNT. The band was called Bandits prior to this. Through the years we`ve given the band several names (The New Thunder" "Tell No Tales" etc.) Ronni le Tekro (guitars)

TO/DIE/FOR (Gothic metal) (Kouvola, Sweden) (Formed in 1999) Before we became To/Die/For we were called Mary-Ann. We played a bit different kind of music. Street rock and roll I would say. After years we changed our music style a bit and we realised that Mary-Ann didn’t fit with our new style and new kind of lyrics at all. In 1999, we got our first record deal and that was right moment to change our name. So we started to call us TO/DIE/FOR. We are singing about very hard things, of course love,hate,dying etc.About real things and this is always been very big question. Is there really something in this shitty world you could die for? Jape (vocals)

TONER LOW (Doom/Stoner metal) (Leiden, Netherlands) (Formed in 1998) The name was chosen by Deef, bass player, singer and one of the founders of the band. He thought it would fit the low frequency sound the band was searching for from the start, and that was first heard at its heaviest on Toner Low's debut album in 2006. Deef left the band by late 2007 and Toner Low continued with Miranda on bass and vocals to release more subsonic assaults of psychedelic doom. Of course the origin of the band name is the message on a printer when it is low on ink, but for the band it was merely a reference to their “low tones” sound.

Daan (guitar)

TOTIMOSHI (Sludge metal) (Oakland, USA) (Formed in 1997) The name was a word made up by my mother. She claimed it was my grandmother's word for describing her attempt at speaking English (of which she spoke none of). We liked it because firstly we didn't have to worry about anyone else having used it, and two because I thought the idea of the attempt at communication, regardless of tools (words) was the most important part of music. Tony Aguilar (vocals/guitar)

TRANSCENDING BIZARRE? (Avant-garde/Post-black metal) (Thessaloniki, Greece) (Formed in 2000) We chose the name ''Transcending Bizarre?'' almost ten years ago; it had to do with the transcendence of music boarders. One or two years after that, we actually realized that we didn't actually know the reason we named the band this way, so we decided to include the question mark in the name of the band because we also dont know what it means. Haris (guitars/synth/samples/programming)

TRISTANIA (Gothic metal) (Stavanger, Norway) (Formed in 1997) The name is strictly a fantasy name. The name was chosen when the band members were around 17 years of age, and the most important thing was that it sounded "gothic". Which it does, I think. Ole Vistnes (bass/backing vocals)

TRUCKFIGHTERS (Stoner rock) (Orebro, Sweden) (Formed in 2000) Truckfighters comes from an old pulp-fiction book series (written for kids like 14 years old) called Truckfighters. The books are about two truck drivers’ adventures. Kind of fun books cause it's a lot of words but little action. Don't know if they were ever was released in America. Think they are from Germany originally because they are driving a MAN truck. Dango (guitar)

TUFF (Glam metal) (L.A., USA) (Formed in 1985) It was 1984 and Jorge and I were forming a band. We loved bands like Ratt, Accept, Poison, Kiss, Saxon and Riot. These were all very powerful one word named bands. So that was our criteria, come up with a cool one word named band. We soon saw the movie Tuff Turf and thought the chick (Kim Richards, I think) was super-hot. Maybe a week later, Jorge and I were tossing names around like Rough, Fist, Punch and at the same time we both said "Tuff". It stuck and I still like the name. Back in the day, if you were a hairband or wore makeup, you better be able to stand up for yourself and Tuff really suited us. Some of the guys that have been in this band are real badasses! Todd (Chase) Chaisson (bass)

TUSKEN RAIDERS (Stoner metal) (Mexico City, Mexico) (Formed in 2002) The name refers to the characters in the Star Wars mythology; they represent a hostile, wild, rebel and unruly minority. Edson Aleman (guitar)

TWISTED TOWER DIRE (Power metal) (Chantilly, USA) (Formed in 1995) Back in the early 90s Twisted Tower Dire was essentially the same band under different names. In 1995 our (other) first guitarist Nick Mertaugh joined. At that time he had a black metal band called Thokk (this was when it was still cool to dress up in spikes, clown make-up, and run around in the woods blowing fire balls). Thokk's lyrics were heavily influenced by HP Love Craft, Clark Ashton Smith and Norse mythology obviously. The term "A Twisted Tower Dire" is a line from a song on the Thokk demo. We thought it had a cool, arcane, creepy and fantastical tone to it that we could carry into new directions lyrically. Scott Waldrop (guitar)

TYGERS OF PAN TANG (NWOBHM) (Whitley Bay, England) (Formed in 1978) Tygers of Pan Tang got there name from a book. While reading a fantasy science fiction book, back in 1978, by an author called Michael Moorecock, the name was stumbled on. The book was called “Stormbringer,” and within the storyline there were, the “Cliffs of Pan Tang”. These were guarded by the Emperor's tigers. So we put the two elements together and the Tygers of Pan Tang evolved. Robb Weir (guitar)

TYKETTO (Melodic hard rock) (New York, USA) (Formed in 1987) I think, unless there is a serious bolt of inspiration, all bands go through the blues of trying to come up with a name that represents them decently. Back then, it felt like all of the cool names were taken. In fact, so were all of the nonsensical names (I never could figure out what a Def Leppard was). If you were a thrash or death metal band, the world was your oyster because up to that point, nobody had stretched the limits to how outrageous you could get with your name. Cannibal Corpse. Cradle of Filth. These were names that told you exactly what you were getting. What was a poor rock band to do? After work one day, our guitarist, Brooke St. James, came home and mentioned, a little sheepishly, that he saw a word spray painted on a wall in a pretty rough area of Brooklyn. It was TYKETTO. He didn't know what it was, but he liked it. And so did we. It sounded like it could be Japanese or perhaps another foreign language. And, like ourselves, it didn't have a deeper meaning. So we took it and it stuck. The funny thing is, later on we got it into our heads to take some photos in front of the graffito that gave us our name and we went back to that neighbourhood only to find that Brooke had misread it! It actually read "TYKETFO". I, for one, am glad that his eyesight was blurry! Danny Vaughn (vocals)

U.S. CHRISTMAS (Stoner metal) (Asheville, USA) (Formed in 2002) Our band name comes from the Sam Peckinpah movie Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid. I watched the movie a long time ago because I heard that Bob Dylan had a part in it. He is actually a character called Alias that throws knives at people. The film is really strange and Peckinpah was a maniac, so it has a certain feel to it that I enjoy. I don't know why I suggested the name to our band back in 2002, but it was so strange that it stuck. Dylan also did the soundtrack, which is one of my favourite albums. You'll have to watch the movie to find the name mentioned. I guess you could say that the name is symbolic of the best American music, and artists like Dylan and Peckinpah who steadfastly fought for their artistic vision. Nate Hall (vocals/guitar)

UFOMAMMUT (Psychedelic stoner/Doom metal) (Piedmont, Italy) (Formed in 1999) Ufomammut is the mixing of two different words (“UFO” and “mammut”). UFO is for “unidentified flying objects” and represents the future and space. Mammut is Italian for “mammoth” and it's for the past and the heaviness. Urlo (bass/vocals/synth)

UGLY KID JOE (Hard rock) (Vista, USA) (Formed in 1989) We had a gig booked in Hollywood opening up for Pretty Boy Floyd. Klaus and Whit didn't like their own band name Overdrive, so they thought it would be funny to spoof PBF's name. The advertisement for the show came out in the paper, the show got cancelled, but the name stuck. Cordell Crockett (bass)

VANDEN PLAS (Progressive metal) (Kaiserslautern, Germany) (Formed in 1986) We found that name on the back of a Jaguar at a car exhibition. At that time (80s), Vanden Plas was a Dutch company which was tuning the inside of expensive cars like Jaguar, Rover, ect. The Vanden Plas Company quit at the end of the 80s. The name "Vanden Plas" is originally a Dutch family name which comes out of where you come from and means "from the mud" or "from the pool". We did like that name for what we feel for our music and where we want to go with it. Andreas Lill (drums)

VANITY INK (Alternative metal) (Helsinki, Finland) (Formed in 2002) We had a lot of suggestions and we noticed that we were all having tattoos. We thought well, this would be a nice topic for a band name and we thought that the band name should somehow be related to tattoos. Tattoos are not essential to your body. I mean that tattoos are great but you don't exactly die if you choose not to have ink in your skin. So, here it goes...Vanity Ink means tattoos/tattoo ink. Sam Junni (drums)

VENOMIN JAMES (Stoner/Doom metal) (Kirtland, USA) (Formed in 2005) We took our name from the novel "Legion" by William Peter Blatty, written in 1983. It is the sequel to "the Exorcist". Legion features a serial killer called "the Gemini Killer" whose real name is James Venamun. We switched the order of his first and last names, and changed the spelling, because it looked cool and seemed more metal. Joe Fortunato (guitar)

VIAJE A 800 (Stoner/Doom metal) (Andalusia, Spain) (Formed in 1996)

The name means in English “trip to 800” or “800 journey,” it means a suicide when you fall from a build or vacuum drop. Pol Elder (guitar)

VILLAGE OF DEAD ROADS (Sludge/Doom metal) (Erie, USA) (Formed in 2005) The guitar player Doug was reading a book by William S. Burroughs called the “Place of Dead Roads”. He was talking to the other guitar player about how that would make a good band name. Then Eric said that if it was "village of dead roads" it would sound more desolate, gloomy and obscure. Plus, we wouldn't have to have anyone asking us to change it in regards of the book or whatever. Chris Williams (drums)

VIO-LENCE (Thrash metal) (San Francisco, USA) (Formed in 1985) We chose the name because we were becoming a very socially aware band. Everywhere you'd look: news, movies, video games, etc., you'd see violence. We wanted to draw attention by having an attention grabbing name, and then seal the deal with our live performance and brutal material. Phil Demmel (guitar)

VIOLENT DIVINE (Heavy metal) (Sweden) (Formed in 2005) The name came out of searching for the name for our new band. Mike (singer) and I sat down one evening and searching on single words on Google. Then I found this British call girl who called herself "Violet Divine" and was blogging about her life and such. I thought it was a cool name and especially where it came from. Unfortunately there were like five bands on the internet with that name already so we decided to go for Violent instead of Violet which was better description for how we create music. Violent riffs combined with divine choruses. Gus Lilijenstron (drums)

VIRGIN STEELE (Power metal) (Long Island, USA) (Formed in 1981)

I am into opposites... dichotomy. I enjoy bringing together elements that are often kept apart. I believe that through creative combination, one gives birth to a third element previously nonexistent, derived from the union of these opposites. Because of this I wanted a name that would embrace and encompass both sides of the musical coin as regards to the songs I was composing. I wanted a name that would express both the heavy and loud as well as the delicate and tender. A name that expressed everything, from a whisper to a scream; the primal, the barbaric, the romantic, bombastic, yet subtle, refined... the grandiose, yet earthy quality the songs possessed. The Music was to be a call, a shout, an invocation to freedom and the continual awakening to the awareness that every moment of life is lived to its fullest potential. Therefore the name had to live up to the sound, and be reflective of such grandiose aspirations. What does the name Virgin Steele mean? To me it means: a fresh approach, a new lease on life; pure Music/Metal, fresh from the fiery forge, ready to be tested, tried and to prove itself, baptized in the flame of life; full of hunger and power, rich with dignity and majesty, with an awareness and respect for tradition, but combined and fuelled by a desperate need to carve out new frontiers of expression. To take the Music as far as it can possibly go; to break the boundaries wide open. There are no limits!!! It means a new way, a new approach, a new vision of Life and Beyond. It represents cutting through all the webs of lies and crap that exist in the world and getting straight to the heart. It's Magickal. It has that Excalibur pulling the Sword from the stone quality... and it also implies carnal appetites. When you spell it Virgin Steele, it designates a personal connection, as to someone's name, like Russell Steele or Remington Steele. Plus the extra "E" adds extra energy and Magick and makes the two words symmetrical with the same amount of letters, visually enticing the Mind, Body and Spirit. Another question I am often asked is, “What do you call your Music, and how do you categorize yourself?” There are three terms I like to use when discussing the Virgin Steele sound ... “Romantic Expressionism,” “Symphonic Blues based Metal,” and, my favourite, or more appropriately, the one that most aptly conjures up the sound of this Music in my mind, “Barbaric Romanticism”. All things are possible in the Land of Steele. Again...the opposites attract. David DeFeis (vocals/keyboards/orchestration/synth/bass/swords/effects)

VOMITORY (Death metal) (Forshaga, Sweden) (Formed in 1989) Twenty years ago when we started the band, this music style was quite new for people. So we think Vomitory was a good name to describe our music in general to people. We got the name from a member in a Swedish band called Treblinka, today their name is Tiamat. The member had the artist name "Emetic". We thought that sound so cool so we find out that Vomitory was another name for Emetic. So that’s why we took the name. Urban Gustafsson (guitar)

WAR BABIES (Hard rock) (Seattle, USA) (Formed in 1988) I saw the name of a store in Hollywood in the late eighties called War Babies; they primarily sold t-shirts and such. I loved the name and retained it for future thoughts. When I started jamming with the guy's in what would become the War Babies I brought it up as a name to possibly use and they all dug it. But it would come to bite us in the ass. The lady who owned the store got wind of our name and was trying to sue us for using it; she said that she had the rights to the name (which we found out later that this was not true). She had the rights (worldwide) to sell t-shirts with the name. After some negotiations with her and our lawyer's (ours were Sony lawyers) we settled out by paying her $10,000 and not selling t-shirt's within a 5 mile radius of her store. Tommy Mcmullin (guitar)

WARBRINGER (Thrash metal) (Ventura, USA) (Formed in 2004) We were brainstorming for a band name, so Andy Laux (our bass player at the time) was reading off a list of monsters from a video game, and Adam and I had decided war was a good theme for thrash metal so I was attaching war to many of the names Andy read off. One was painbringer or something, which got the war attachment, hence Warbringer. John Kevill (vocals)

WARPIG (Hard rock) (Woodstock, Canada) (Formed in 1968) Our band's previous name was Mass Destruction. After a change of membership and some notable changes in style (getting musically heavier) we were unable to agree on a new name with each of the four members having differing preferences. We agreed on the "name from the hat" selection process and someone wrote the four chosen names on four identical scraps of paper, folded them up and stirred them around in a baseball cap. The name drawn was Warpig as submitted by our bassist Terry Brett. We were all still reeling from the news headlines referring to the Kent State University Riots the day previous

and most read "War on Pigs, police shoot students" or similar. Terry was furious that cops would shoot school kids from their own neighbourhoods let alone their own country (as were we all) and Warpig flashed into his mind. Rick Donmover (vocals/guitar)

WHILE HEAVEN WEPT (Epic doom metal) (Dale City, USA) (formed in 1991) I received a letter from my girlfriend one bright autumn day that also happened to be our anniversary. Although I probably should’ve anticipated the contents considering she had moved to another city, I just didn’t want to accept things were over, however there was no mistaking the sentiment behind the words “I’ve just given up” and “I’m not the only one in this world”. I was gutted. I fell to my knees, unable to breathe, weeping uncontrollably, asking the useless question of “why?” The air chilled around me, the sky turned black and the sky opened up as if empathetic to my anguish; heaven wept with my sorrow. Tom Phillips (vocals/guitar/keyboard)

WHITE TRASH (Funk metal) (Queens, USA) (Formed in 1985) When I was a teenager, my dad and I loved the supremely talented actor/artist Timothy Carey. Mr. Carey was in this movie called Poor White Trash, which is a low budget film from the 1950s. Besides beating up hack actor Peter Graves in the film, Mr. Carey does this really strange and totally over the top dance routine. He gets all hot and bothered and starts bumping and grinding like an animal! Inspired by that wonderful performance my father kept telling me that I should use "Po' White Trash" as a song title and eventually I came up with a song. The song became one of our more popular titles and so we eventually decided to change the band name to the shorter and more succinct White Trash (the previous band name was "Wired" inspired by all of the cocaine that we were snorting at the time). Once we changed our name, the title "White Trash" became a sort of badge of honour for us. Dave Alvin (vocals)

WHORES OF TIJUANA (Stoner metal) (Orange County, USA) (Formed in 2004)

I was driving in my car in Southern USA and was cut off by a lady in what I would describe as a ghetto car. I basically yelled, "You fucking Whore of Tijuana!" For whatever reason, two minutes later it dawned on me how that wasn't really a bad thing but pretty much the description of the kinkiest working girls there are. Trent Ramseyer (drums)

WITCHCRAFT (Stoner metal) (Orebro, Sweden) (Formed in 2000) The name actually comes from a previous band member whose name I don’t wanna mention here. He was practicing witchcraft. He was one of the "Old Ones" and the most evil person that I have ever met. A true devil worshipper. I think he resides in the mountains of Bergslagen these days and has his own cult going there. Magnus Pelander (vocals/guitar)

X-SINNER (Melodic heavy metal) (Orange, USA) (Formed in 1988) The original idea for the name was simply just "Sinner". Our label at the time wanted us to add the "X" because we were known as being a "white metal" or "Christian metal" act. We thought that it sounded a bit "holier than thou" meaning a little too self-righteous but we gave in and went with it. Rex Scott (vocals)

Y & T (Hard rock) (Oakland, USA) (Formed in 1974) When the band was just weeks old, our drummer Leonard Haze received a phone call about booking the band for a show. He was caught off guard at the time, since we hadn't talked about naming the band yet. At that moment, he was listening to the Beatles’ Yesterday and Today album so he looked at the cover and told the promoter the name of the band was Yesterday and Today. When I arrived at rehearsal the next day, Leonard said "I named the band, man; we're called Yesterday and Today". I thought, "WTF kinda name is that?" and there it was. After the first two records we shortened it to Y&T since the fans shouted that at encores. Dave Menikietti (vocals/guitar)

YAWNING MAN (Stoner rock) (La Quinta, USA) (Formed in 1986) We got the name from a character in the original Tom Thumb movie. Yawning Man was the doll/toy that put all the other toys to sleep at night with his "Yawning Man Song”. Gary Arce (guitar)

YEAR OF NO LIGHT (Sludge/Drone/Doom metal) (Bordeaux, France) (Formed in 2001) Our name comes from a 3 Miles Pilot song “the Year of No Light” on the Another Desert, Another Sea (1997) record. We had no name during one year, a concert was booked and we need one fast, one of our guitar player comes with that name and we all agreed directly! Johan Sebenne (bass/electronics)

YYRKOON (Thrash/Death metal) (Picardy, France) (Formed in 1996) We chose this name because we were very influenced by the writings of Moorcock and all kinds of heroic fantasy books at our beginning, which was palpable on our debut album Oniric Transition. So Yyrkoon is one of the characters who appear in the Elric saga of Michael

Moorcock. The funny part is that we discovered lately that this author wrote lyrics and even sang on some Hawkwind albums. Laurent Harrouart (drums)

ZANDELLE (Power metal) (New York City, USA) (Formed in 1996) Zandelle originally started out as just a project to record some material I had written over the years. I never imagined it would be anything more than that. When I decided to go into the studio and begin the recording process I realized I needed something to call this project. A few years earlier while I was in college, a good friend of mine got me involved in the role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons. For those of you unfamiliar with D&D, you are required to create a character and that character of course has to have a name. So I had made up the name Zandelle for that purpose. My character by the way, for those interested was an Elven warrior. So when I was trying to come up with a name for the recording project, I figured the easiest way to ensure that I wouldn't be using an already established name is to use a word that doesn't actually exist in the English language. After all, there is nothing worse that coming up with a really cool name, marketing the band with that name, and then finding out that some other band somewhere is already using it and now you have to come up with something else. So I used the name I had created for my Elven warrior for D&D. George Tsalikis (vocals)

ZONDERHOOF (Stoner/Doom metal) (Wales, England) (Formed in 2005) The band name is taken from something written on a tank Otto saw in a museum. There was some mystery attached to it where the crew suffocated but the tank continued to kill. It's the mix of the macabre with the surreal and the brutal and the unpredictable. Didier Baja (guitar)

darXtar (Psychedelic/Space/Prog metal) (Scandinavia) (Formed in 1989) I made some hobby/demo-recordings in 1988 that eventually ended up at Steve Lines place, at the time the driving force behind the Acid Tapes label in England. I wanted to have a band name to it although it was just me doing all instruments, so I chose Alpha Scorpii, the brightest star in the constellation Scorpius, also known as Antares. The title of the "release" was Dark Star (quite the opposite to the brightest one). Steve misread it somehow and released two of the tracks on a compilation cassette labeling us as Dark Star. It didn't bother me much at the time, even if I was well aware that Dark Star is closely connected to the Grateful Dead and that it is the name of numerous more or less successful bands. By the time he released it I was already underway with a full length album recording that Steve had promised to release. Of course he soon proclaimed that Dark Star from Sweden was working on an album. Now, this time I most certainly didn't want us i.e. me to be called that so I had to think of something different. Something similar but still original. And as is usual with this type of things, it just came to me one night. darXtar (yes, it's meant to be with a capital X but seldom is) is pronounced darkstar but looks pretty weird. Just what I wanted. Still, I think a more "direct" name had been beneficial for us marketwise, but in the long term I'm very pleased with our name. K.Soren Bengtsson (guitars/vocals)








BIOGRAPHY Blair Gibson self-released a joke book entitled Laff Your Ass Off: The art of joke telling on the internet website in 2005. He is 34 years old and lives in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada with his wife of 6 years (together for 12) Chantelle. They have no children at the present time but do have a 4 year old nephew named Ethan. Blair has lived in Regina his whole life and has been a metal head since he was 7 years old. He has seen Megadeth, AC/DC, The Answer, Heaven and Hell and Def Leppard live. He currently works at a Wal-Mart Supercentre as a Store Standards. He would like to work on a follow up to this book with all new bands and all new stories!

From The Minds Of Madness  

From The Minds Of Madness - Metal band Archive

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you