Weekly survey: What is the worst band name of all time?

If you’ve ever been in a band, you’ll know how torturous it is to come up with a name. So many criteria need to be met.

  • Everyone in the group has to agree on it.
  • The name has to project something about your style, image, attitude, and sound.
  • It has to lend itself to good graphic design.
  • You have to be able to secure a domain name–and .com is preferred.
  • And most importantly, no one else can have used the name at any point in the history of the known universe.

These challenges have often led to some bad decisions. The Butthole Surfers. Dayglo Abortions. Dogs Die in Hot Cars. Car Seat Headrest. Toad the West Sprocket. Hootie and the Blowfish. Hoobstank.

Before they decided on Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, they went by Hitler’s Underpants, a truly awful name. Who thought Test Icicles was a good name (say it fast)? How about Let’s Eat Grandma? And I swear there’s a band called Xstabxyouxinxthexheadxandxeatxyourxfacexoffx.

Even “The Beatles” is a terrible name, It began as an homage to Buddy Holly and The Crickets (crickets-beetles, geddit?). But then John suggested a twist by changing the second “e” to an “a” because at the time, combos such at this were often referred to as “beat groups” in the UK. “It works on two levels,” said John. Maybe, but it’s still a terrible name.

What are your picks for the worst band names of all time?

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

29 thoughts on “Weekly survey: What is the worst band name of all time?

  • April 8, 2019 at 10:38 am
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    Got a few for you Alan! Erotic Female Relievance Observations, Fat As Fuck, Fetal Butchery and Fetus Grinders and one of my favourites – Cumgun

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  • April 8, 2019 at 11:09 am
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    The worst one that comes to mind is Anal Cunt. Yuck!

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  • April 8, 2019 at 11:09 am
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    “Accidental Goat Sodomy” has to be one of the worst I’ve ever found

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  • April 8, 2019 at 11:58 am
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    Rainbow Butt Monkeys… great album terrible band name… no wonder they changed it to Finger Eleven.

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    • April 8, 2019 at 12:37 pm
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      @Shane, and to be fair, Finger Eleven is a pretty lousy band name too!

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  • April 8, 2019 at 12:08 pm
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    Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head

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  • April 8, 2019 at 1:49 pm
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    In the same vein as “The Beatles” being a terrible name… sorry, but “Nirvana” never seemed like a good name to me, right from the beginning. The music is nothing at all representative of Nirvana – the band certainly wasn’t (not even in a tongue in cheek way), and the band name didn’t seem to fit the genre: Mudhoney, Melvins, Tad… yes. Nirvana? Errr, no.

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  • April 8, 2019 at 2:10 pm
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    I saw a band about 10 years ago in Toronto call The Texas Dirt Fuckers

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  • April 8, 2019 at 3:08 pm
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    Children of Incest

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  • April 8, 2019 at 7:38 pm
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    Limp Bizkit is pretty stupid.

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  • April 8, 2019 at 7:54 pm
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    It’s either the worst band name or the best depending on your outlook on the matter. Local band had the name “Your Mother”. So every weekend a local bar’s sign would read “Live tonight – Your Mother”.

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  • April 8, 2019 at 8:07 pm
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    The butt hole surfers
    Anything with lil or young
    Even though I love this band pet shop boys

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  • April 8, 2019 at 8:11 pm
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    Diarrhea Planet. Great band but the name will turn your stomach if you think about it too much. Trust me.

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  • April 8, 2019 at 9:47 pm
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    Nickelback, but it suits.

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  • April 8, 2019 at 9:59 pm
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    The Band. Tells you nothing about them, their origin, influences, musicianship, or song writing talent. Just plain lazy.

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  • April 8, 2019 at 11:46 pm
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    There are so many, it’s had to narrow it down…but…

    Rainbow Butt Monkeys
    !!!
    Anal Cunt
    Cherry Poppin Daddies
    Dave Matthews Band

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  • April 9, 2019 at 7:15 am
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    Maybe not the worst name, but I cringe every time I have to say Alice in Chains because I love their music.

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  • April 9, 2019 at 8:15 am
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    Glue Leg was a pretty bad name.

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  • April 9, 2019 at 9:26 am
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    The Music could have been great but you couldn’t Google them…

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  • April 9, 2019 at 4:00 pm
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    Foo Fighters is pretty dumb imo.

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  • April 9, 2019 at 4:04 pm
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    I love Arctic Monkeys as a band, but it’s a truly stupid band name. I think they’ve admitted as much.

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  • April 9, 2019 at 4:26 pm
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    The Electric Toilet.
    I don’t want to know where that name came from.

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  • April 10, 2019 at 8:27 am
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    I hate to say it, because they’re a beloved band, but Ned’s Atomic Dustbin.

    It’s silly and people always give me a funny look when they ask me about my favourite bands. It’s long and unwieldy. It’s shortens to, “NAD”, which is less than ideal as well.

    But great fucking band.

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  • April 10, 2019 at 1:42 pm
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    Jimmie’s Chicken Shack

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  • April 12, 2019 at 10:49 am
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    I used to be in a punk band and it was really difficult to come up with a name. Like stupid hard. We went through a few, 3 Legged Dog, The Cumbdunts, and The Beef Curtains. All pretty stupid. We finally settled on “Guess What Peter Did”. Again, pretty dumb. But we had a small following, and they shortened it to GWPD.
    But we never really liked it. But it’s so hard.

    Reply

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