Can Silver Snakes Beat Indiana Jones' Ass?
It's a well-known fact that most band names are essentially gobbledygook, but here at Rocks Off we're trying hard to find meaning in the oddest monikers.
There's an underlying animal theme to this column you may or may not have noticed. I'm always interested when bands attach themselves to lions, tigers, bear, ponies and even the Loch Ness Monster. So when I saw a band called Silver Snakes was sneaking into town from Los Angeles, I perked up and wanted to find out why they found the serpent so worthy a herald.
First the band itself... if you like Fugazi you'll like these guys. It's a pretty nice combination of social themes, straight rock and experimental flourishes that land it in the category of uncategorized. The beats are strong, the guitars tend to ballroom-dance in and out of each other's lines, and singer Alex Estrada commands a pretty impressive presence. He's what alt bands used to sound like before whiny purveyors of victim music started trying to growl as overcompensation.
But that name...
Silver Snakes? Snakes aren't silver. They're Leave Me Alone Green or Poison as Fuck Multicolored. The last time I even heard of Silver Snakes it was because they were one of the teams in the Nickelodeon game show Legends of the Hidden Temple, which by the way was awesome.
Why don't we put kids into danger for our amusement anymore? That's life in Obamastan for you. You'd think that expanded health care would mean we could let kids bounce off the walls in a fake temple once in a while, but I guess not.
Itching with a need for knowledge, I sent a series of messages via carrier pigeon to Estrada to ask what was up with his slithery name.
"The name just came to me one day in 2005 when I was hanging out at my mom's house," he says. "I had just started working on new music and desperately needed a name for it. I thought it had a cool ring to it and even though I didn't do much with that particular project at the time. The name always stood out to me."
"It's fairly ambiguous," he adds. "I just think it sounds cool and looks cool on paper. I wish it had a better back story!"
So once again I stumble across a band that puts less thought into their name than they do into selecting a McDonald's combo, but that's OK. That's where I come in and dive deep into the band's own mind in order to try and unearth the real, hidden meaning underneath their base motivations.