A metal umlaut is a diacritic that is sometimes used gratuitously or decoratively over letters in the names of hard rock or heavy metal bands—for example those of Blue Öyster Cult, Queensrÿche, Motörhead, The Accüsed and Mötley Crüe.
Among English speakers, the use of umlaut marks and other diacritics with a blackletter typeface is a form of foreign branding intended to give a band's logo a Teutonic quality—connoting stereotypes of boldness and brutality presumably associated with Germanic and Nordic cultures. Its use has also been attributed to a desire for a "gothic horror" feel.The metal umlaut is not generally intended to affect the pronunciation of the band's name, unlike the umlaut in German (where the letters u and ü represent distinct vowels). Also, the Scandinavian countries regard å, ä and a, ö and o as distinct letters.
The first gratuitous use of the umlaut in the name of a hard rock or metal band appears to have been by Blue Öyster Cult, in 1970. Blue Öyster Cult's website states it was added by guitarist and keyboardist Allen Lanier,but rock critic Richard Meltzer claims to have suggested it to their producer and manager Sandy Pearlman just after Pearlman came up with the name: "I said, 'How about an umlaut over the O?' Metal had a Wagnerian aspect anyway."
Speakers of languages which use an umlaut to designate a pronunciation change may understand the intended effect, but perceive the result differently. When Mötley Crüe visited Germany, singer Vince Neil said the band couldn't figure out why "the crowds were chanting, Mutley Cruh! Mutley Cruh!"
The British speed metal band Tröjancauses ridicule in Swedish, as the umlaut changes the meaning from the intended Trojan into the slightly more mundane The jumper (definite article singular).
These decorative umlauts have been parodied in film and fiction; in an interview about the mockumentary film This Is Spın̈al Tap , fictional rocker David St. Hubbins (Michael McKean) says, "It's like a pair of eyes. You're looking at the umlaut, and it's looking at you."The heavy metal parody band Gwar parodied the use of metal umlauts in a lyric insert included with its first record, stylizing the song names with gratuitous diacritics. In 1997, the satirical newspaper The Onion published an article titled "Ünited Stätes Toughens Image With Umlauts."
Blue Öyster Cult is an American rock band formed in Stony Brook, New York, in 1967, best known for the singles "(Don't Fear) The Reaper", "Burnin' for You", "Cities on Flame with Rock and Roll", and "Godzilla." They have sold 25 million records worldwide, including seven million in the United States alone. The band's music videos, especially "Burnin' for You," received heavy rotation on MTV when the music television network premiered in 1981, cementing the band's contribution to the development and success of the music video in modern popular culture.
Heavy metal is a genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom and the United States. With roots in blues rock, psychedelic rock, and acid rock, the bands that created heavy metal developed a thick, massive sound, characterized by highly amplified distortion, extended guitar solos, emphatic beats, and overall loudness. The genre's lyrics and performance styles are sometimes associated with aggression and machismo.
Speed metal is an extreme subgenre of heavy metal music that originated in the late 1970s from new wave of British heavy metal (NWOBHM) roots. It is described by AllMusic as "extremely fast, abrasive, and technically demanding" music.
Voivod is a Canadian heavy metal band from Jonquière, Quebec. The band's current line-up consists of Denis "Snake" Bélanger (vocals), Daniel "Chewy" Mongrain (guitar), Dominic "Rocky" Laroche (bass) and Michel "Away" Langevin (drums). Their musical style has changed several times since the band's origin in the early 1980s. Starting out as a speed metal band, Voivod have added a mix of progressive metal and thrash metal to create their own unique metal style, and they are credited as one of the "big four" Canadian thrash metal bands, along with Sacrifice, Razor, and Annihilator.
Monsters of Rock was an annual hard rock and heavy metal music festival held in Castle Donington, England from 1980 to 1996, taking place every year except 1989 and 1993. It later branched into other locations such as the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Germany, France, Sweden, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, the United States and the Soviet Union.
Generation Swine is the seventh studio album by the Glam Metal band Mötley Crüe, released on June 24, 1997. The album marks the return of lead singer Vince Neil following his last appearance on 1991's Decade of Decadence and the last to feature drummer Tommy Lee until the 2008 album Saints of Los Angeles. It is also the band's last album to be released on Elektra Records.
"Looks That Kill" is a song by American heavy metal band Mötley Crüe. It was released in 1983, on the group's second album Shout at the Devil. It is released on January 4, 1984.
Rrröööaaarrr is the second studio album by Canadian heavy metal band Voivod. It was released in 1986 on Noise Records. Estimated sales are more than 40,000 copies, worldwide. In a 2012 interview with Michael Dodd of Get Your Rock Out, vocalist Denis Bélanger stated that, while a thrash record, the album represents a progression from the punk/thrash sound of War and Pain to the more progressive elements that would feature on Killing Technology.
"N̈", or "n̈" is a grapheme from several minor extended Latin alphabets, the letter N with a diaeresis mark.
Umlaut may refer to:
Damnocracy was a heavy metal supergroup formed on, and for, the VH1 TV show Supergroup in 2006.
Metal: A Headbanger's Journey is a 2005 documentary film directed by Sam Dunn with Scot McFadyen and Jessica Wise. The film follows 31-year-old Dunn, a Canadian anthropologist, who has been a heavy metal fan since the age of 12. Dunn sets out across the world to uncover the various opinions on heavy metal music, including its origins, culture, controversy, and the reasons it is loved by so many people. The film made its debut at the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival, and was released as a two-disc special edition DVD in the US on 19 September 2006.
Kill Cheerleader was a rock band whose members formed in 1999 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Mainly influenced by punk rock and heavy metal acts such as The Stooges, early era Guns N' Roses, Mötley Crüe, Iron Maiden, the Ramones, Girlschool, Joan Jett and Neil Young, they had crafted their own unique, sleazy style of rock 'n' roll, once being described as "a derailed train hitting a Baptist Church". Lemmy from Motörhead described Kill Cheerleader as the "greatest rock n' roll band since Guns N' Roses."
This is a timeline documenting the events of heavy metal in the year 1981.
"Live Wire" is the debut single by the American heavy metal band Mötley Crüe. It was released on their 1981 debut album Too Fast for Love.
The Top 500 Heavy Metal Songs of All Time is a book by Martin Popoff who is the editor in chief and writer of the Brave Words & Bloody Knuckles magazine as well as the senior editor of bravewords.com. He also wrote The Top 500 Heavy Metal Albums of All Time.
This is a timeline of heavy metal and hard rock, from its beginning in the early 1960s to the present time.
Heavy Montréal is a two-day, summer heavy metal and hard rock music festival held annually at Parc Jean-Drapeau in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. It also includes various other events at different venues across the city. The "MTL" in the former name, Heavy MTL, served as both an abbreviation for "Montreal" and "Metal." In 2014, the festival was officially renamed as "Heavy Montréal".
Moottörin Jyrinä is a children's heavy metal band from Helsinki, Finland.
Biker metal is a fusion genre that combines elements of punk rock, heavy metal, rock and roll and blues, that was pioneered in the late-1970s to early-1980s in England and the United States, by Motörhead, Plasmatics, Anti-Nowhere League and Girlschool.
Some groups, for example Blue Öyster Cult and Motörhead, added gratuitous umlauts to their names to conjure up a more generic gothic horror, a practice that continued into the 1980s with Mötley Crüe and others.