Heavy Metal Umlaut
Definition - An umlaut (e.g. the two dots over the e in ë ) over a letter in the name of a heavy metal band.

1. The purpose is to give the band's logo a Teutonic or gothic-horror feel; it is not meant to affect pronunciation.

Example -
Spïce Girls

Etymology -
According to the Wikipedia:
"The first gratuitous use [of the umlaut] appears to have been either by Blue Öyster Cult or by Black Sabbath, both 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."

In that same year, Black Sabbath's record label, on a rare picture-sleeve 7" single version of Paranoid (with the b-side Rat Salad), for no apparent reason, retitled the song "Paranoïd" with a diaeresis above the 'i'."


1. Let us not forget about other atmospheric umlauts. There is the fashionista umlaut, which I'm sure I've seen gracing one or another clothing boutique. Very Bauhaus!

There is also the "New Yorker" magazine umlaut [e.g. coöperate], ostensibly there so we don't mispronounce "cooperate" as "Cooper," but really there to say, "We New Yorkers may physically be in North America, but we are in spirit Continental sophisticates."
(Jack Ognistoff)

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