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A Brief History of Controversy-Courting Band Names

Tomorrow marks the release of Strapped, the new album by Californian noiseniks The Soft Pack. (You can stream the record at Spin right now, if you’re so inclined.) For those not familiar with the band’s history, they used to be known as The Muslims, a name that caused them all sorts of predictable problems and was eventually ditched in favor of their current moniker circa 2009. So, to celebrate The Soft Pack’s new record, we thought we’d look at some of music’s other great controversy-courting band names. Warning: naughty words abound.

The Muslims

According to the band themselves, they chose this name for no particular reason, and changed it because they got “exhausted by all of the ignorant, often racist, bullshit that came out of people’s mouths during shows/interviews/conversations.” It’s kinda sad that calling yourself something as simple as “The Muslims” is inherently controversial in the 21st century — we can’t imagine that calling yourself The Zoroastrians or something would have quite the same effect. But anyway, these days, the band are called The Soft Pack, a name that apparently refers to “a fake flaccid penis that can be worn in the trousers of someone who doesn’t have a penis that wants to convince people otherwise.” Which is much better, clearly.

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