Elliot: This couch reminded me of my grandpa, he used to drive around in a car just like it. You know, until he was killed in that seven car pile-up.
JD: Seven Car Pile-up would be a good name for a rock band.
Elliot: Yeah, you actually told me that on the day he died.An unusual yet cool sounding name or phrase is mentioned by one character, and then another character jokingly remarks what he said would be a good name for a band; usually rock or metal. This generally parodies the Word Salad Title naming convention of many Real Life rock bands. This is not a list of all bands in fiction, and neither is this a list of what real-life bands were named after (clearly, for any existing band someone thought that its name was a good one). For the latter, see That Other Wiki. Compare Trope Names for a Band.
Examples:Anime & Manga
- When describing her younger siblings' propensity for lies and talltales in Kiniro Mosaic she reveals she's jealous of the nickname they've earned of the "Fibbing Brothers" because she thinks it's a cool name for a band.
- Advice and Trust: Meta example. As explaining details about his story, Strypgia said:
"He believes that Rei and the Dummy Plugs (Oooh, must copyright that band name!) will be sufficient to that task."
- In the Glee slashfic Story of Three Boys, while a homophobic pastor is talking about "wayward youth" and "vandalism", Finn says that he's going to start a band called Wayward Youth, and that their first album will be called 'Vandalism' and have naked dudes go-go dancing on the cover.
- A meta example, but many readers of My Immortal have thought that "Vlodemort and da Death Deelers" sounds like a good name for a band. The fact that Voldemort and his followers were disguised as My Chemical Romance definitely didn't help.
- Iron Man 3 has Tony fighting Ellen Brandt, an Extremis-empowered Dark Action Girl. After she walks through the flames he placed to get in her way, Volcanic Veins all ablaze, he boasts that he's dated hotter girls than her. When Brandt responds with "That all you got? A cheap trick and a cheesy one-liner?", Tony notes that he should name his autobiography after that line.
- Something of a Running Gag throughout The World's End, Gary will hear a phrase and tell Steven to write it down. He turns it round in the climax of the film. "Gary King and the Enablers" in particular has become a Memetic Mutation.
- A close variant in George of the Jungle when Lyle comments that "White Ape", George's nickname in local legends, sounds like the name of a mixed drink.
Lyle: "Ah, yes, bartender, I'll have two Black Russians and a White Ape."
- Mentioned in And Another Thing..., when Arthur Dent starts to "understand his daughter's feelings of isolation."
Arthur Dent: We are cosmic nomads, which would be a great name for a band, by the way, interstellar drifters with no one to cling to in this eternity of displacement but each other."
- In his character defining scene in Blood of the Elves, Dandelion and his two female companions hastily tidy up their clothing. "The modesty of harlots, thought the poet, was not at all a bad title for a ballad."
- The Hectic Glow from The Fault in Our Stars, a band "so beautifully underground that they don't even exist".
- Most of the nonsense phrases Dave Barry said "would make a good name for a rock band" (which tended not to be so nonsensical when viewed in context). The Federal Duck in particular is a truncation of the real-world "Federal Duck Stamp Program." His website has compiled a list of these joke suggestions here.
- Similar to Barry, George Carlin had entire lists of these in his books.
- In Illuminatus! by Shea and Wilson, there is a huge music festival on Walpurgisnacht, with a plethora of Good Names for Rock Bands. Behold! A few of the names became notably defictionalized, including Steppenwolf and Nirvana.
- In Tricky Business (also by Dave Barry), an untalented rock band with the uninspired name Arrival is desperately searching for a new name (one rejected name: "We May Suck, But We Play Better Than You Dance") when they play a gig at a joint whose rowdy patrons beat up their frontman Johnny for not playing country music. The mention of "contusions" (bruises) in the medical report of Johnny's injuries gives the band the idea of changing their name to Johnny and the Contusions, though the story behind this name doesn't bear repetition.
- Emily in Emily the Strange: Stranger and Stranger comments that a number of phrases she used would be good names for bands such as Sewer Mural and Dark Artifact.
- In Battlestar Galactica, when Anders says that Cylon Leoben might have been right about Starbuck having a special destiny, Starbuck replies that "Kara Thrace and Her Special Destiny" sounds like a bad name for a cover band.
- A similar joke is used early in Season 5 of Canada's Worst Driver, when the drivers have to reverse a stretch limousine with each other as passengers. Dr. Gembora summed up the challenge as "eight bad drivers in a stretch limo", which Peter Mellor remarked sounded like a movie title.
- Corner Gas: After promotional mugs made for Corner Gas and The Ruby come back reading 'Corner G and The Rub', Brent decides this will be the name of his act if he ever decides to become a rapper.
- The Daily Show:
- On 4/7/2010, the show covered reports of recent scandals with the Republican National Conference. After a CNN clip regarding the RNC's "Lesbian Bondage Fiasco", Jon Stewart answered, "If 'Lesbian Bondage Fiasco' isn't the name of an hard-edged indy band by tomorrow, I'll be very disappointed."
- On 2/21/2012, Jon Stewart, commenting on a Virginia abortion bill, mentioned "Transvaginal Ultrasound" as being a 15-member jazz fusion band.
- On 10/23/2013, they discussed one Fox News commentators statement that the Tea Party Republicans were a "suicide caucus", with Jon saying that's impossible because in 1983 he started Suicide Caucus, a speed-punk-ska-jazz fusion band.
- In a second-season episode of Dark Angel, Max and Alec explore a seemingly abandoned research lab in Terminal City. After finding a huge snake, Max remarks that it's like Ames White and his Familiars are following her around. Alec states that "Ames White and His Familiars" sounds like a rock band. After they leave, a mental patient retrieves the snake and tells it that does sound like a rock band.
- In an episode of iCarly, Carly and Sam are drinking smoothies and Sam complains about "strawberry lumps". Carly tells her that "The Strawberry Lumps" would be a good name for a band.
- In an episode of MythBusters that focused on the transmission of diseases, Adam noted that the fluorescent dye in the test (simulating a runny nose) had spread all over, coating everything in a touch of orange. He then joked that "Touch of Orange" was the name of his cover band.
- On NCIS: New Orleans, Sebastian, the assistant evidence tech:
Sebastian: I'm still trying to identify the species, but it's some kind of benthic worm. Which, by the way, if I ever have a band, will be the name of said band.
- On Qi, Stephen Fry once demonstrated contempt for the book The Da Vinci Code, describing it as "loose stool water". Alan Davies then commented that "Loose Stool Water" would make a good name for a blues singer.
- During an episode of Reno 911!, the cops discover that Wiegel's new boyfriend is a serial killer. They feel conflicted about telling her, because she actually seems happier. One of them points out that she's normally borderline-suicidal, but keeps screwing up her suicide attempts (and subsequently forcing the department to devote resources to suicide watches), and thus having someone around who's experienced at killing might be better, "like a death leprechaun". Another cop declares that "Death Leprechaun" would be an awesome name for a band.
- Andy from Parks and Recreation actually is the lead singer in a rock band but he's never really been satisfied with its name, meaning that he's completely serious when he makes comments like this.
April: So tomorrow, I lead a public forum in Leslie's Fleetwood Mac sex pants.Andy: Fleetwood Mac Sex Pants, new band name, I call it. Ooh, you know what? Maybe just Fleetwood Mac.
- In The Sarah Jane Adventures, Clyde mentions that Pantheon of Discord would be a good name for a band. The Doctor wholeheartedly agrees.
- One episode of Scrubs has Elliot buy a new couch in the shape of a car that reminds her of her grandfather who died in a seven car pile up. JD says it sounds like a good name for a band, and Elliot reminds him he told that joke at the funeral.
- Best Friends Whenever has "Heart Rocket": While discussing a rocket-launching competition (It Makes Sense in Context), Barry and Naldo agree that this would be a good name for a band. A couple of episodes later, Cyd and Shelby find themselves in an Alternate Timeline where Heart Rocket is a real band, with Barry and Naldo as its founding members.
- Jessica Jones, in a great example of Snark-to-Snark Combat.
Kilgrave: So, you found my testing arena. All by yourself?
Jessica: Just followed the trail of misery.
Kilgrave: Oh, that's a good band name.
- Probably every real band in recent history owes its name to this trope to some extent, but Def Leppard gets credit for actually being named after a Fake Band — lead singer Joe Elliott had created a bunch of made-up rock bands and written reviews of them as English class projects.
- This joke is a mainstay of Paul and Storm live performances, most evident in their over-long performances of "The Captain's Wife's Lament" in the "X is name of my Y cover band" format.
- Jello Biafra has a spoken word routine, "Names For Bands". Rejecting names like "Bad Attitude" or "The Young ____", he suggests Lost Orgasm, John Wayne On Acid, and Primer Grey Erection. More here.
- On a family vacation in the Virgin Islands in the mid-1980s, underage high school student Bob Whelan and his brother visited a local bar, "discussing potential names for his high school band". Bar patron Freddie Mercury overheard the discussion, shouting across the bar the band name Whelan would use professionally in The '90s: Angry Salad.
- In the comic strip Zits, Jeremy and his friends are brainstorming names for their Garage Band, when his dad walks in and says "Goat Cheese Pizza?" They go with it, apparently not realizing that he's actually offering them a pizza with goat cheese on it.
- Doonesbury in the '80s did an arc about the recording of USA For Africa's "We Are the World". Producer Quincy Jones delivers a speech to the gathered rock musicians, saying, "We want to show that we care about hunger in Africa." Cue two extras in the back:
Extra 1: Who's "Hunger in Africa"?
Extra 2: I think it's an Australian band.
- One round in I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue involves the contestants having to say words that aren't related, with the opposing team challenging if they see a connection. A Running Gag has Barry Cryer challenging on ridiculous word-combos, insisting it was the name of a band in the sixties.
"Sharabang Sperm? Sixties rock band."
- In one episode of The Museum Of Curiosity, Andrew O'Neil (of The Men Who Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing, so a man who recognises a random phrase's band name potential when he hears it), talking about class-issues on the Victorian necropolis railway quotes one commentator talking about "the body of some profligate spendthrift" before interrupting himself to say "Which is a good name for a band. 'We are Prolifigate Spendthrift!'"
- In an episode of The Unbelievable Truth Jeremy Hardy challanges (correctly) when Graeme Garden talks about the origins of shellac and its use in confectionary, claiming "Beetle Arse-Juice Sweets" was an indie band he saw recently.
- The Ricky Gervais Show: Karl talks about looking through a gay magazine, describing the focus as "Just cock. Just, 100%, like, let's just talk about the knob..." Ricky comments that "100% Cock" would be a good name for a gay magazine.
- A Running Gag on The Kevin And Bean Show. Whenever someone says a good example, one of the other hosts will cut in, "I hear they're headlining Coachella this year!" or some variation.
- Also a Running Gag on The Armstrong And Getty Show. Whenever some odd but awesome phrase is uttered, Joe Getty will usually say something like "(phrase) is the name of my new (genre) band."
- One episode of Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! had a Southern caller tell the panel that the name of her punk band was "Sex Barbecue". They apparently took two of their favorite things and put them together.
- Preston of the Prestonand Steve Show keeps a list of good rock band names and adds to it whenever a good one comes up.
- In The Bible: The Complete Word of God (abridged), while talking about the Exodus, this line is quoted: "And the Lord God cursed the wicked serpent to henceforth crawl about on its belly. Presumable, the wicked serpent had legs prior to that; indicating that it was more of a wicked lizard. And the Lord God thought to himself that Wicked Lizard would be a good name for a Heavy Metal Band." (Possible reference to Noise Rock band The Jesus Lizard, which is actually named after a type of lizard.)
- Played with in Brütal Legend when a woman is refusing to cry.
Lita: Never again! I'd sooner have scorpions running down my face than tears.Eddie: You know, that'd make a cool album cover.
- Comes up a few times in Kingdom of Loathing:
- The Stone Mariachis: "The mariachis begin to play a sinister song. As the song's tempo increases, a rumbling begins, deep beneath the ground. As the mariachis reach a dire crescendo (Hey, have you heard my new band, Dire Crescendo?) the gate behind the statues slowly grinds open, revealing the way to the Sorceress' courtyard."
- Astral Badger: "<Familiar name> claws your opponent with his pan-dimensional claws and bites him with his astral teeth for <number> damage. Ladies and gentlemen, coming to the stage right now: ASTRAL TEETH!"
- Batblade: "This is a dewinged stab-bat. Have you heard my new band, the Dewinged Stab-Bats?"
- One-winged Stab Bat: "This is a partially rewinged dewinged stab bat. Have you heard my new band, the Partially Rewinged Dewinged Stab Bats?"
- Rewinged Stab Bat: "This is a fully rewinged dewinged stab bat. Have you heard my new band, The Joke That Got Repeated Until It Wasn't Funny Anymore?"
- Giant skeelton: "It kicks you with a multitude of phalanges. A Multitude of Phalanges was, by the way, my favorite 80's band."
- League of Legends has "Pentakill", which is the Announcer Chatter when one player kills 5 enemies in a very short space of time. It's been officially recognized, with Sona (on keyboard), Yorick (on bass guitar/shovel), and Mordekaiser (on guitar/axe), Karthus (lead singer), and Olaf (drums) getting Pentakill skins.
- In this Chopping Block, Butch learns, to his disappointment, that Matricide Anonymous is a band.
- Matchu has "Some Whores" and "Blowjobs", which are explicitly pointed out as BAD band names and freak out the clerk working at the record store.
- Ravens Dojo has the recurring character Metalhead, who occasionally pops in and steals lines out of context that would make good names for rock bands, much to Dornail's dismay.
Dornail: Dammit, Metalhead! Those are my sweet band names!
- Referenced in at least two xkcd strips: Worst Band Name Ever (119) and Tumblr (1025).
- 1/0: Well, album title.
- The Order of the Stick #1033: When the best phrase O'Chul can come up with to describe an attacking yrthak is "sonic reptilian unicorn," Lien immediately claims that at least she has a good name if she ever quits being a paladin to form a punk rock band.
- A conversation in Paranatural between Max and overenthusiastic school reporter Suzy:
Suzy: Have you heard the rumours, Max?
Max: is that a band name
Suzy: They say the Student Council is looking for someone.
Max: if it isn't i call that band name
- Of course, there are several band name generators online.
- In The Agony Booth, the recap of Southland Tales one of the responsible says that MegaZeppelin "is so going to be the name of my first album, by the way". A later article on Star Trek V: The Final Frontier does a Call Back:
- "Mindzonked Sulu and the Morons (great name for a punk band—in fact, I hear they’re touring with Megazeppelin right now)
- The Angry Video Game Nerd in his Zelda II review.
The Nerd: "Cunt Thrust. That would be a good name for a rock band."
- Parodied by CollegeHumor in their "Honest Music Festival Commercial". The bands listed on the poster include stuff like Joke Name, Swiftly Fell the Apricot, and Gored Moose.
- A Grantland article highliting weird parts in the Wikipedia articles on National Hockey League teams comes to this after the Tampa Bay Lightning entry:
- Tony Esposito and Several Satellite Dishes would be a good name for a band.
- In Lawrence Friday's Let's Play of Dante's Inferno, Dante is told names of some of the people in Limbo, after having been introduced to Unbaptized Babies, who have, in Lawrence's words, "scythe-hands". He doesn't know if these people are forced to have weaponry for hands, as well. John Murdock asks if they're going to fight "hook-handed Caesar." One chest-cloth cutscene later...
- Game Grumps: In the 22nd episode of Sonic Boom, Danny refers to Chili-dogs as "Roasted Landwieners" and then later says "My band has a new name!"
- Youtuber Markiplier often yells incomprehensible things during his horror videos. Regulary, he claims that the arrangement of words would make great band names and declares that someone may use it, but has to pay him for the useage.
Markiplier: He died?! I barely even got started! This is bull. Murder in a minute. "Murder in a minute" would be a good band name, god dammit, I keep coming up with great band names.
- House To Astonish on the subject of Flashpoint titles with an "X and the Ys" format, as seen on the quote page.
- In Jake English's Mysterious Theater of Scientific Romance from the Year 3000, while reviewing The Darker Knight Al points out that "Clowns Only Die Twice" would be a good band name.
- In Let's Drown Out, after Yahtzee and Gabriel briefly riffed on the name of the alien in Quake 2, 'The Stroggs', they made a brief joke in that The Stroggs were a punk rock band from west of England.
- The Nostalgia Chick: In reviewing True Lies, the Chick thinks the terrorist group being named "Crimson Jihad" is ridiculous.
"'Crimson Jihad' isn't a terror group! That's the name of your, like, alt rock band that you had for, like, a month in high school!"
- Author John Scalzi keeps a Tumblr where he collects these.
- In the SF Debris review of the Babylon 5 episode "Rumors, Bargains, and Lies", Chuck makes the following crack about the White Stars:
"Sheridan's succeeded in convincing the Centauri and Narn to allow White Star Fleet—uh, that's the fleet we saw at the end of last year's "And the Rock Cried Out, No Hiding Place", built using Minbari and Vorlon technology, piloted by Rangers, commanded by Sheridan, and sounding like a '70s metal band."
"So we have the two plots: Sheridan trying to get the Non-Aligned Worlds to accept White Star protection... (beat) I was wrong, it sounds like a toothpaste."
- Given a Brick Joke a few minutes later:
- In Tabletop, Paul and Storm (mentioned above) were once guests. Joined by host Wil Wheaton, they propelled the whole "[X] is the name of my [this artist] cover band" Running Gag to new heights.
- Homestar Runner:
- In "Cool Things", after a bored Homestar paints the words "Cool Tapes" on the wall of Marzipan's living room, she ends up forming a band called "Cool Tapes" with Strong Mad and the Cheat.
- In the Strong Bad Email "flag day", Strong Bad remarks that "Pablo Phoenix" sounds like a good stage name for a pop singer.
Strong Bad: Look Out Ladies Productions presents: Pablo Phoenix, this Friday at the civic center.
- In "old cartoons", Strong Bad gets an email from a sender in "West Islip, NY" and remarks that "West Is Lip" sounds like the name of a British New Wave band.
- From the Valentine's Day Episode of Teen Girl Squad: "She Likes Cloth. That's a good band name."
- In Stuart Ashen's "Video Game Tat" video, Ashens holds up a video game case that would reveal an activation code if he hadn't put a fake Lens Flare on top of it, and annotates on video: "'Obscured by Fake Lens Flare' would be a good name for a prog rock band."
- Blogger Matt Walsh, in a diatribe against global warming, mentions that “Some Kind of Apocalypse” would be a great name for a band.
- What If?:
- A variation in the entry "Steak Drop" that could be called A Good Name for a Rock Album. The Alt Text of the third graph reads:
a hypersonic steak breaks mach 6 while elsewhere a jam band produces an instrumental album titled 'hypersonic steak 6'
- "Tatooine Rainbow" notes that the gap between the bright part of a double rainbow and the dim part is called Alexander's dark band. Cue image of a rock band with that name singing a botched version of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow".
- A variation in the entry "Steak Drop" that could be called A Good Name for a Rock Album. The Alt Text of the third graph reads:
- On This Very Wiki, Rainbow Dash apparently thought the trope Ron the Death Eater was the name of a death metal band.
- Jacksfilms: In this episode of Your Grammar Sucks, Jack replies to a comment reading "abortion sucks and should be band":
"Abortion" should be a band!
- One user comment on SCP-1048:
On a side-note, Teddy Bear Abortion would be a great name for a band.
- From an article on racism by Cracked's David O'Brien...
Clint Eastwood recently said that we were living in what he called the "pussy generation" — an overly PC era of "walking on eggshells" and an inadvertent pitch for Kanye West's next album title.
- The classic article 100 Unintentionally Hilarious Spam Subject Lines suggests the subject lines Thunderbolt Autopsy, DongBoat, Hysterectomy Doorknob, and Spiderman Pharmacy for this purpose.
- The Twitter feed "We Want Plates", dedicated to cataloguing bizarre food serving options in restaurants occasionally does this, for example:
Macaroni Cauldron and Ketchup Syringe: two obscure indie bands for the price of one.
- In an episode of Plumbing the Death Star about Harry Potter, the episode's guest (Shanks) mentions magical woman who attended a witch hunt for fun and calls her a "masochistic sex witch hanging around Salem." After everyone laughs at his description, he jokes that that's what he's naming his next rock band.
- Indy Neidel, the host of The Great War, has identified two, "The Russian Women's Battalion of Death" (an actual military unit formed in 1917) and "Dutch Royal Cocaine Factory" (an actual enterprise located in Indonesia).
- On the commentary track for Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, Bruce Timm, Paul Dini and Glen Murakami talk about the absent producer Alan Burnett and compare him to George Harrison for being the voice of reason, while they are more like Ringo Starr, soon concluding that "Three Ringos and a George" would make for a great band name.
- Metalocalypse is full of this, being about an extremely successful Death Metal band. The band's name itself, Dethklok, is a great name for a band, except there's already something called the Death Clock, which is why they changed the spelling of the band name.
Dude, are you puking blood? Hm... Blood Puke. Great name for a song. Someone, write that down... No wait, we recorded that song already... Great song, though.
- They also come up with some pretty good names for songs.
Max: "So we like Time Travel Guinea Pigs."SheZow: "That's a good name for a band."
- In the early/mid 2000's, Cartoon Network had several commercials where they made announcements for bands based off of clips from their shows (including "Popcorn Fairy" and "Hideous, Rotten Teeth").
- In Steven Universe, Greg's reaction to seeing that someone has stolen the entire ocean and turned it into an enormous space needle, piercing the heavens from the middle of a vast desert?
Greg: "Guys... I just had the best idea for an album cover."
- In Wander over Yonder, Lord Hater ends up in a prison dimension, and says it smells like zombie armpits in there.
Lord Hater: (writing down on notepad) Zombie armpits. Good name for band.
- Brandy & Mr. Whiskers: In "Pedigree, Schedigree", Brandy, while preparing for a beauty pageant, discovers she's actually a mixed breed. As she breaks down and calls herself a "common mutt", Whiskers exclaims that "Mutt" would be a great stage name for her.
- AlternateHistory.com notes that "Obama and the Republicans," a phrase which comes up frequently in U.S. political discussions, is a good name for a rock band.
- According to the Rifftrax of 300, "Submission" would be a good name for a Muslim rock band.
- Monty Python recorded a sketch called "Rock Notes" for Monty Pythons Contractual Obligation Album, in which a band called "Dead Donkeys" reported their split. During the sketch a number of alternate band names the Dead Donkeys considered using were mentioned, including, "Sole Marnier, then Dead Sole, Rock Cod, Turbot, Haddock, White Bait, the Plaices, Fish, Bream, Mackerel, Salmon, Poached Salmon, Poached Salmon In A White Wine Sauce, Salmon Marnier, and Helen Shapiro." Years later, in a truly meta note, another band name mentioned in the sketch was adopted by an actual rock band, Toad The Wet Sprocket. In Eric Idle's own words, "I was trying to think of a name that would be so silly nobody would ever use it, or dream it could ever be used." Apparently it was just silly enough that someone thought it would be hilarious to use it anyway. His reaction to hearing a real DJ announce the name for the first time? "I nearly drove off the freeway."
- Voltaire did this with his album Riding a Black Unicorn Down the Side of an Erupting Volcano While Drinking from a Chalice Filled with the Laughter of Small Children which was how a fan described listening to his music. It also made its way into a song.
- The blogger sahira820, upon writing the phrase 'Harry Dresden and the Sex Vampires' noted this.
(in the tags) "Harry Dresden and the Sex Vampires is my Billy and the Werewolves cover band"
- Aleks from The Creatures says in the gondola on Road to E3 that "Cucumber Gulch Preserve" is a good name for a rock band.
- CBS, when covering Donald Trump's presidential campaign, interviewed two experts, one of whom put Trump's success down to his sprinkles of compassion. Toward the end of the interview, both experts were debating what kind of music would be produced by a band named Sprinkles Of Compassion.
- And on the other side of the aisle, pretty much everyone who saw this sign from in front of a Maine gun store agreed that "Vagenda of Manocide" was an excellent name for an all-girl metal band.