Square Pig in a Round Hole-February 13, 2021

Naming a band is an act of concentrated creative expression. Square Pig in a Round Hole exists to reward five favorite band names each week. Winners are (usually) listed alphabetically.

Selection is wholly unscientific and subject to whim, with a bias toward wordplay, humor, and local flavor. In most cases, I won’t know anything about the bands at the time of selection. Thanks to the Seattle Times nightlife listings for abundant source material!

(Until live music returns, I am curating retrospective posts from past material. Dates indicate when the band was originally featured.)


On this snowy Valentine’s Eve, I continue the celebration of togetherness with more band names in classic X and the Y structure. Keep warm and as ever, wash your hands, wear your mask, and if you are able, please buy these bands’ music and merch while we wait for a better day.

Gilbert Grape and the Trucknuts
(April 6, 2013) Classic X and the Y format, a few too many words, and apparent simultaneous references to a Johnny Depp movie and a breakfast cereal. What’s not to like?

Gnarlene and the Frisky Pigs
(June 14, 2014) I’m always on the lookout for creative use of the classic X and the Y structure. This combines an over-the-top front person’s name with an active and comical backing band name. These people are having all the fun.

Grace Love and the Haters
(July 12, 2014) I’m a perennial fan of the classic X and the Y naming structure. This takes it further by building a name out of virtues and pairing it with their opposite, setting up an interesting tension. Will hate overcome grace and love, or will grace and love redeem hate?

Indie and a Jones
(March 8, 2014) Wordplay and pop culture and the classic X and the Y structure? It’s like they know me. And I’m a big fan of Dr. Jones.

Jack and the Dull Boy
(August 3, 2019) I like this one both for the classic X and the Y structure and for the creepy literary reference. (It appears to be an actual two-piece, too. Not sure which one is Jack, but their demo is not dull.)

Two last things before you go:

  1. My new thing in the new year is The Rage Brigade, a Facebook group for conversation about fantasy, science fiction, superheroes, and music (and the intersections thereof). If that sounds like fun, come join us here.
  2. I share highlights from this blog in my quarterly author newsletter, The Storypunk Report, as well as news of what I’m writing and reading, upcoming events, and other goodies, including “Wizard in the Mosh Pit,” an exclusive short story just for subscribers. Click the link to check out the first nine issues and subscribe here for future issues. (Or just follow the blog for your weekly dose of band names.)

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