We’ve been toying with the idea of writing “lists” every once in a while. One idea was to identify some fun indie band names. After some procrastinating, we have to thank Artemis Thomas-Hansard of The Village Voice, who wrote this entertaining ramble titled, “The History of Terrible Band Names”. Yes, some of his arguments are irrational and contradictory (e.g., animal-based names in the ’60s were cool but not so cool in the 2000s) and it seems like Thomas-Hansard is judging a book by its cover, but we’d like to thank him for inspiring us to write this article.
Today, we’re listing five fun and cool indie names – well, we think they’re fun and cool. They might sound ridiculous, they may make very little sense, and they may be bizarre. But in this era of diverse, eclectic music and where the competition is fierce, bands need to find names or monikers that are interesting and captures the imagination. Even Thomas-Hansard would have to agree with this.
So let’s get the list started. As always, this is in alphabetical order.
Okay, this name is definitely going to be polarizing, but in my opinion it’s one of the best band names in rock and roll. Think about it, you now know a band called Diarrhea Planet exists, isn’t that enough to get you interested? And when you check them out, you’ll see they’re one hell of a rock band. They’re loud, raucous, and awesome.
From Nashville, Tennessee, these guys, fronted by Jordan Smith, featuring guitarist Evan Donohue, drummer Casey Weissbuch, bassist Mike Boyle and guitarist Brent Toler are one of the fastest up-and coming bands at the moment. And for good reason, their live performances are awesome; they’ve played some big festivals like SXSW and have a pretty awesome relationship with their fans. They’ve gotten the attention of two other excellently named bands on this list, Screaming Females and Titus Andronicus, along with JEFF The Brotherhood, Wavves, and Marnie Stern. They released their second LP, I’m Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams, in August.
And check out this awesome video of Diarrhea Planet covering Bruce Springsteen’s “Born To Run” with Patrick Stickles of Titus Andronicus:
The History of Apple Pie
The History of Apple Pie is a five-piece band from London that plays ’60s-inspired fuzz pop-rock. Like their name, the music is fun and sweet, delicious at times, and often leaves you wanting for more.
Consisting of Stephanie Min (lead vocals, guitar), Jerome Watson (guitar), Kelly Owens (bass), James Thomas (drums), and Aslam Gauri (guitar), the band released its debut album, Out of View, almost a year to the day, and they also released a 7”, “Don’t You Wanna Be Mine”, last October. After you take a listen, we’re sure you will be craving more of THOAP.
It Hugs Back
One would think a band with the name It Hugs Back would play melodic indie pop or something easy listening or maybe even children’s songs. This London, UK band did start off writing warm, fuzzy songs, but their second LP, Recommended Record, which was released last spring, is quite the opposite. It’s heavier and louder. It combines synth textures with more reverb and lo-fi psych, like on “Big Sighs”. There are still some more poppy songs, like “Teenage Songs” and “Skateboard Rhythm”, but the young band has made a dramatic jump in songwriting and in its music.
Take a listen to the music of Matthew Sims (singer, guitar), Paul Michael (bassist), Jack Theedom (keyboard), and Will Blackaby (drums). Maybe the music literally won’t hug back, but it just might embrace you.
Some of the names on this list are a little misleading, The History Of Apple Pie probably don’t let us know how apple crumb pie came to be, but the New Brunswick, New Jersey punk rock trio, Screaming Females, indeed has a screaming female! Singer/Guitarist Marissa Paternoster is one of the most exciting live performers on the indie rock scene. The band also features the heavy-hitting Jarrett Dougherty on drums and King Mike on bass.
Since forming in 2005, they’ve gone from performing in basements, houses, and garages to playing some of the larger clubs in New York, where they will headline a show at the Music Hall of Williamsburg this weekend. Screaming Females have released five albums, and two EPs. They’ve also worked with many other artists, including Garbage with whom they released a Record Store Day single where they covered Patti Smith’s “Because The Night”. On their latest album, Ugly, released in 2012, they worked with Steve Albini, who will return to work with them on their upcoming live album, Live at The Hideout.
Ok, maybe this name isn’t exactly fun since the Glen Rock, New Jersey band’s name derives from arguably Shakespeare’s most gruesome and violent play. However, it’s still a cool name. Anything with Titus really is cool, and so is the music that Patrick Stickles (lead vocals, guitar), Eric Harm (drums, backing vocals), Julian Veronesi (bass, backing vocals), and Adam Reich (guitar, keyboards, backing vocals) are producing.
In some ways like the play, Titus Andronicus holds nothing back. The modern day punk-rockers are loud and intense. They want to leave you exhausted, whether you’re listening to their albums or watching them live. At the same time, they don’t take themselves too seriously, as they’ve done entertaining interpretations of more famous pop tunes, such as Coldplay’s “In My Place” and Icona Pop’s redundant hit, “I Don’t Care”. The Coldplay cover is classic (but it’s not safe for work).
Tracks like “My Time Outside the Womb” and “Upon Viewing Oregon’s Landscape with the Flood of Detritus” are more reflective of Titus Andronicus’ style. But whether they’re writing new music or doing covers, they don’t take themselves too seriously yet they leave a lasting mark.
Website – http://titusandronicus.net
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Titus-Andronicus
Twitter – https://twitter.com/TitusAndronicus
Soundcloud – https://soundcloud.com/titusandronicustheband
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