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The Gratuitous Umlaut Options
Daemon
Posted: Friday, September 22, 2017 12:00:00 AM
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The Gratuitous Umlaut

An umlaut is a diacritical mark consisting of two dots placed over a letter to alter pronunciation. However, the so-called "heavy metal umlaut" is used in the names of bands, such as Mötley Crüe and Motörhead, not to change pronunciation, but to evoke the stereotypes of boldness and strength commonly attributed to peoples whose languages incorporate such marks. It has since been widely parodied, including in the mockumentary This Is Spin¨al Tap. Which band first used a gratuitous umlaut? More...
monamagda
Posted: Friday, September 22, 2017 10:36:28 AM

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Above: Blue Öyster Cult were the true pioneers. On Your Feet Or On Your Knees, 1975, was their first live album.


The first (gratuitous) use in a metal band's name 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,[5] 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."[6]
Another apparent 1970 usage of the metal umlaut was by Black Sabbath, which released a picture-sleeve 7" single version of "Paranoid" (with the b-side "Rat Salad"), titled "Paranoïd" with a diaeresis above the "i" (as is correct in French, except that in French the 'd' is followed by an 'e').[7]

http://www.eyemagazine.com/blog/post/dot-dot-rock
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