Friday, December 24, 2010

December 24, 2010

Dear Santa,

The club listings are a little thin this week, so instead of picking favorites, I'm making another kind of list. A wish list, of band names I'd like to see. Maybe in 2011?

Greenwood Academy of Hair
The beauty school has closed, but the name could live on as a metal band -- or a venue!

Human Blood Rush
The first time I saw this on a box at the Puget Sound Blood Center, I thought, "Brutal."

Sack o' Hamsters
Just cuz.

Talents West
Another local business that could have a second life. This would also be a good name for a local record label.

White Creek Grange
The vacant and weathered grange hall, with wind turbines in the background marching off for miles in either direction, sits at the crossroads of the Old West and sci fi. I'm thinking techno-country.

I'll be watching for these in the new year.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

December 18, 2010

It's not even Christmas yet, and I've already received the gift of TOO MANY GOOD BAND NAMES!!! I have bravely narrowed this week's abundance to these lucky few:

The Dead Kenny G's
This one is great on so many levels, harking back to a great old punk band name while also poking fun at a local boy. There's always room for poor taste . . .

Dirt Worshipper
The name is funny, and the band was apparently playing two gigs in the same night, which wins my attention and respect.

Nearly Dan
When perusing the club listings on Friday night, this was the first band name to catch my eye, and it just stuck with me. It cleverly references another band, and being "nearly" anyone is funny on its own.

Trespassers William
These two both get the nod for literary allusions to a couple of favorite books. Music and books go together like books and music.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

December 11, 2010

Playing music is a creative act, but so is forming a band and naming it. I like to reward creativity where I find it. Here is what I found in this week's listings:

Afraid of Figs
My Greek's rusty -- would this be "phiggophobia"? I like this one because it has nothing obvious to do with music, and seems so unlikely. Figs are more comical than frightening, and the disconnect makes it work. That, and the repeated "f" sound.

Angry Snowmans
Nice seasonal touch, with a twist. I'm thinking of the Killer Monster Snow Goons on Calvin's front step. The incorrect plural adds a touch of childlike sweetness . . . or is it spine-tingling peril?

Felonius Funk 
I love the sly reference, as well as the implication that they're so funky, it's illegal.

Idaho Meth Project 
Apologies to the actual Idaho Meth Project non-profit. Meth isn't funny . . . but Idaho is. Thanks to EMP, any name that goes "something something Project" is automatically funny in Seattle. Idaho just pushes this over the top.

Siegfried vs. the Giant
Hooray for Norse mythology geeks! Siegfried is my favorite big dumb hero.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

December 4, 2010

Although I had an embarrassment of riches to choose from, I was blessed with several automatic selections of beloved names I've been eager to see again. And not one, but two bands I've actually heard! It was difficult to exclude the runners-up, but I'm sure they will have their chance another day.

Curtains for You
Full disclosure: I'd heard of this band years before I saw them at the Columbia City Theatre (which has a stage with actual curtains), and the keyboard player has visited my house. But I think I would list them even if that weren't so. I like how the name references another era and aspect of American pop culture. (I tend to pronounce it "coitains" like the gangsters in old Bugs Bunny cartoons.) 

Jefferson Death Star
This one made the whole family laugh out loud, an automatic winner. Rock music and Star Wars came into my life at around the same time, so this kind of intersection will always get my attention.

Ocelot Omelet
I like ocelots and omelets, though not necessarily together. This one is goofy and kind of gross, with the fun of both assonance between the opening Os and alliteration between the closing Ts. An unlikely pair but made for each other.

Ravenna Woods
I saw this band on the same bill with Curtains for You and can attest that they put on a great show. They make the list for neighborhood-level local flavor. In fact, the name implies that they're my neighbors.

ThorNton Creek
Likewise. I would expect to see Thornton Creek and Ravenna Woods on the same bill at Meadowbrook Pond. This is local music at its localest.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

November 27, 2010

Neither snow nor Thanksgiving nor Harry Potter movies will stay the Square Pig from her appointed rounds!

3 Inches of Blood
Disgusting yet precise. Who's going to clean this up?

The Bitter Roots
Whether the mountain range or the wild plant, this name evokes a distinct corner of the planet that means a lot to me, so it makes the list.

Horse Feathers and Hooves and Beak
Once again, a lineup makes the list as a unit. These two belong together. Must be a Harry Potter mood, but they both make me think of hippogriffs. And separate or together, they're funny.

Texas Hippie Coalition
Any hippies in Texas have to stick together, and they have my best wishes.

With These We Seize
What have we here? Clever rhyme + Vague pronoun = Band name that sounds like a commercial slogan. Gotta love it!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

November 20, 2010

Difficult to narrow the choices to just five!

Cootie Platoon
This band combines the juvenile "cootie" with the deadly serious "platoon" in a goofy juxtaposition that includes the wonderful assonance of two double o's. Fun to say, hilarious to picture.

Freelance Whales and Miniature Tigers
I couldn't choose between these two, so I decided to honor the lineup, which is made only more perfect by the venue, The Crocodile. I like the combination of wild animal with incongruous adjective.

Howlin' Houndog and the Infamous Loosers
I'm partial to the old-fashioned "and the" construction, especially when one or both parts are creatively spelled/misspelled. Now that I've sneaked a peek at a description of the music, I like it even more. Anyone who mashes together the Sonics, Captain Beefheart, and the Velvet Underground as influences gets my vote.

Out Like Pluto
I like Pluto. I'm sorry it got demoted from the planet club. On the other hand, it's so far out, maybe it doesn't want to be in our lame club.

"The Story" Guy and His Band
This is sweet. It's not even so  much a name as a description: an unnamed "story guy" -- what story? what guy? -- and his unnamed band. The artless naivete wins me over. And the secrecy -- they don't seem to have a website.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

November 13, 2010

I find most of the really creative, entertaining band names under Rock/Pop (possibly because Seattle is a city of rock bands?), so it's a rare pleasure this week to honor a couple of bands in other genres.  This week's awards go to:

Eighteen Individual Eyes
I have delighted in this name for months, so I'm thrilled they came up this week. The inclusion of "individual" makes it for me -- it's not just "eighteen eyes" but "eighteen individual eyes."  Is this an eighteen-eyed creature, each eye functioning independently? Eighteen one-eyed creatures? A nine-piece band? It's also fun to say -- all those vowels just roll off the tongue.

Hobo Nephews of Uncle Frank 
My first winner from the Country listings! (I will have to keep a closer eye on Country; when Rock starts to take itself too seriously, Country keeps its sense of humor). I think I like this one because uncles and nephews are automatically funnier than fathers and sons. I also enjoy the specificity of Uncle Frank. And for some reason, "Hobo" adds humor to anything these days.

Kung Foo Grip
Back to childhood and those GI Joe commercials! The spelling adds to the humor, especially as they happened to be playing at Chop Suey.  Thank you, Hip-Hop, for stepping up.

Low Hums
Another first -- a band I've actually heard. I caught the end of their set at Reverb and can attest that this is a case of the name fitting the music perfectly. A deep bath of sludgy distortion -- ahhh!

Puget Sound System
Local flavor + wordplay = A Winner! We are so lucky to live in a place where the largest body of water is a sound.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

November 6, 2010

Square Pig in a Round Hole debuts today! I hope to have some fun and perhaps offer support to people doing live music in this virtual age. Everyone's a winner -- selected band names are not ranked, but are listed in alphabetical order for want of a better system.

  This one makes the list because of the surprise ending to a cliche. 

  I've been seeing this band name for months, and it always makes me laugh. The wordplay and the image it evokes put it on the list.

  This one is fun to say aloud, and it has an appealing neighborhood-level local vibe.

  Brutal, badass and hilarious all at once.
  Local flavor, and I've always liked the word "ruckus," so what can I say? A winner. Go, White Center!

Support creativity and local music!