Musicians

Published on January 15th, 2018 | by Amber Healy

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Say what? No, really: unpronounceable band names

A band’s name says a lot about them. But what if the name can’t be said?

We’re talking about bands like ******** or !!! or ttttttttttttttttttttt, bands who decided on purpose to name  themselves something that can’t easily be pronounced because… well, sometimes speaking is dull. Apparently.

It’s also counter intuitive, considering how often people will shout out combinations of words and say “Oh, that’s a great band name.”

Take Ungl’unl’rrlh’chchch, which The Guardian describes as a “mysterious Newcastle trio whose name sounds like a Welshman trying to get rid of some persistent catarrh. They have one self-titled release to their name, with tracks full of dark ambient pulsations and non-specific menace, called things like Deep Engulfing Ancient Evil Chambers.”

But how do you say that name?

The best (worst?) one might be from Minsk (of course).

Meet Eximperituserqethhzebibšiptugakkathšulweliarzaxułum.

Err…..

Once you’ve caught your breath, try this – the title of their debut album: Prajecyrujučy Sinhuliarnaje Wypramieńwańnie Daktryny Absaliutnaha J Usiopahłynaĺnaha Zła Skroź Šaścihrannuju Pryzmu Sîn-Ahhī-Erība Na Hipierpawierchniu Zadyjakaĺnaha Kaŭčęha Zasnawaĺnikaŭ Kosmatęchničnaha Ordęna Palieakantakta, Najstaražytnyja Ipastasi Dawosiewych Cywilizacyj Prywodziać U Ruch Ręzanansny Transfarmatar Časowapadobnaj Biaskoncaści Budučyni U Ćwiardyniach Absierwatoryi Nwn-Hu-Kek-Amon, Uwasabliajučy Ŭ Ęfirnuju Matęryju Prach Ałulima Na Zachad Ad Ękzapłaniety PSRB 1620-26b.

Greg Kennelty of Metal Injection asks the obvious and, really, only question one could ask in this situation: “My question about the name is why, outside the obvious ‘let’s get our 15 minutes of fame.’ Why make it so difficult to search for your band that most would probably just give up after a few tries?”

There’s a lot to be said of giving credit to other, like-minded, groups.

One of the members of the weird named Achraeopteryx Ultraavantgarda (wha!?) made this list of other “silly/long/strange/unpronounceable band names,” including iamamiwhoiam, Mare and the Corpse-Eyed Toads Were Looking for Cesia, Found Lately in the Morning the Whistling Henna, and a handful of others written in languages other than English.

And what about bands whose names are nigh-on impossible to search for online?

That’s a challenge that Google might’ve righted on its own.

Christopher Ratcliff writes for Econsultancy.com how he set out to research and write an article about bands and artists that couldn’t be find on Google (without some real struggling).

He suggests those days are over and that Google has figured things out.

His first try was the band The The. Typing that into Google resulted with the band’s Wikipedia article, home page and a handful of videos.

He also tried looking up Television, a band that did get properly recognized by Google even if it was nestled among ads for, y’know, TVs.

So bands, keep on delighting yourselves with your unpronounceable names, but know that Google – and your fans – can still find you.




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About the Author

I write about music policy and lawsuits because they're endlessly fascinating.


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