Clothing Chain H&M Creates Fake Metal Bands to Sell Merch, Releases a Song Called “Vaginal’s Juice Dripping into Cadaverous” [UPDATED: No, They Didn’t]
Update #2, 11:04am, March 24: Henri “Trollhorn” Sorvali, guitarist and keyboardist for Moonsorrow and keyboardist for Finntroll, is apparently one of the people behind the creation of the fake music to accompany H&M’s new clothing line. He claims “that the point of the project was “to point out the fact that you cannot commercialise a subculture without actually knowing all the different aspects of it.” More info here.
Update, 8:12 pm, March 23: Against all odds, this story has gotten even stranger, and Strong Scene now denies any official involvement with H&M. Read the latest here. Original story follows below.
Last month, we reported that clothing chain H&M was getting into the metal game, making shirts for Metallica, Slayer, and Guns N’ Roses, as well as some shirts that just seemed to promote heavy metal in general, or that were for fictional bands. For example, while there’s no shortage of metal bands called “Mortus” in the world, none of them are this Mortus, whose shirt goes for thirteen bucks on H&M’s website:
What we did not realize is that H&M are not only participating in the creation of fake metal bands in order to peddle merch for said bands, but they’re trying really, really, REALLY hard to make people think those bands are real.
Case in point: less than an hour ago, MetalSucks recevied the below press release from someone calling himself Ville Huopakangas. As far as I can tell, no such person exists.
Swedish underground metal promotional agency STRONG SCENE PRODUCTIONS was pleasantly surprised when Swedish clothing industry giant HENNES & MAURITZ decided to honour legendary underground metal acts from their roster in H & M’s latest fashion collection.
Now STRONG SCENE PRODUCTIONS is happy to provide a musical trip down in memory lane in support of HENNES & MAURITZ Heavy & Metal clothing line showcasing the talents and forgotten jewels of global underground metal music.
As illustrated by the bomber jacket and t-shirts worn by the models of H & M, the new items feature logos from long-forgotten underground goth- and thrash acts such as the French LANY, Mexican MORTUS, American “cosmic hippie metal” -gurus MYSTIC TRIANGLE and GREY from Germany – the originator of the whole symphonic female metal-genre.
These groups together with the likes of extreme metallers MOTMROS and neo-folkers THE ONE formed the basis for a whole generation of music in 1980’s, music that was traded on tapes rather than as files, music that served as an inspiration to all of the most successful bands still recording today, from Meshuggah to the likes of Nightwish.
As most of the bands featured on the HENNES & MAURITZ clothing line are from long before the age of digital music, there is now a compilation project in the works by STRONG SCENE PRODUCTIONS, collecting together all of the works of these long forgotten jewels of metal music that never hit it big to the masses until now – thanks to the talented designers at HENNES & MAURITZ.
None of these bands are real. And as Scrapyard notes, Strong Scene Productions purports to have been established in 1999, and has a drolly 1999-ish website, complete with detailed bios for all of the bands that have allegedly been on the “label.” But Strong Scenes’ YouTube page is less than a week old, as is their Facebook page and Twitter account… and “there’s a bunch of corporate sponsored accounts on Reddit saying that these bands are TOTALLY REAL.” In fact — the press release even included fake album art and band photos, some of which are reasonably convincing, some of which look like shitty Halloween costumes:
And as if all of that weren’t strange enough, H&M have commissioned “A demonstration sampler compiled by Strong Scene Productions showcasing the talents of these old-school underground metal talents.” These songs have titles like “Sign of the Antichrist,” “Hellish Massacre,” “Holocaust Tomb,” and, best of all, “Vaginal’s Juice Dripping Into Cadaverous,” which, kind of hilariously, sounds pretty gross, but doesn’t actually mean anything. All of the songs are made to sound like super-underground old school shit that would have been traded on tapes back in the day, and generally speaking, they sound more or less authentic (if you don’t have the patience to listen to the whole thing, I highly recommend you at least check out Grey’s “Death of Rose,” because holy shit is the singer off-key, and the fact that this was presumably a deliberate choice somehow makes it even funnier):
And it gets weirder still!!! As Metal Injection notes, “Two of the bands seem to have ties to the NSBM scene.” Which means H&M is creating fake white supremacist bands.
What to make of this little marketing ploy? Satan knows I love a good trolling, but what’s the actual point of this? Making up bands is presumably cheaper than licensing logos and art from real ones, or hiring product bloggers for brands, but… are people really gonna buy shirts for fake metal bands? Why would they? Real metal fans will recognize that this is all bullshit; maybe posers will go for the gag, but they can get cool-looking merch from bands they don’t actually listen to (e.g., Iron Maiden, Black Flag, Napalm Death, Cannibal Corpse, etc. — y’know, bands whose merch is popular even amongst people who don’t know the band very well, if at all) for much less via other outlets.
Selling merch with fake bands on it is one way to make some money, while signing up for a new casino bonus is another. Either way, we should probably start thinking about changing careers. That way we might even be able to afford some of the real merch that celebrities like Kanye West and Chris Brown, who have taken a liking to metal in recent years, have been spotted wearing of late.
What do you guys think? Is this funny? Stupid? Insulting? Weird? All of the above? Weigh in with your thoughts in the comments section below.
Additional reporting by Emperor Rhombus