3. In fact, this bomber jacket — sold by H&M in Sweden — is covered in imaginary band patches.
There’s patches that have the names YVAEH, LANY, Crepuscular, Motmros, Blast, and Grey — along with a patch that just says METAL, because of course.
5. This week, a YouTube video featuring tracks of many of the bands adorned on H&M’s clothing popped up.
The video includes short bursts of music from each band, album art, and even photos of band members.
6. A label called Strong Scene Productions claimed that they were simply releasing music from “long forgotten bands.” The bands all happened to have the same names as the fake ones on H&M’s clothing.
“As illustrated by the bomber jacket and t-shirts worn by the models of H & M,” they wrote on their Facebook page, “the new items feature logos from long-forgotten underground goth and thrash acts such as the French LANY, Mexican MORTUS, American ‘cosmic hippie metal’-gurus MYSTIC TRIANGLE and GREY from Germany – the originator of the whole symphonic female metal-genre.”
10. Metal websites like Metal Sucks and Metal Injection assumed that H&M was somehow behind Strong Scene Productions and looking to lend credibility to the metal bands it was promoting on its clothing.
Why might H&M go to such lengths? As writer Axl Rosenberg wrote over at Metal Sucks, “Making up bands is presumably cheaper than licensing logos and art from real ones.”
11. Both sites accused H&M of hiring a marketing firm to fake the bands’ credentials.
“None of these bands have any sort of history beyond pages created this year,” wrote Robert Pasbani on Metal Injection. “This marketing project seems to dig deep. They even created tracks by these potentially fake bands to make it seem like all of this is real.”
Rosenberg added, “H&M are not only participating in the creation of fake metal bands in order to peddle merch for said bands, but they’re trying really, really, REALLY hard to make people think those bands are real.”
13. According to its leader, Henri Sorvali, who poses under the name Ville Huopakangas, all of the music and artwork — in fact Strong Scene Productions itself — was created recently, in response to H&M’s fake metal bands.
H&M has not responded to a request for comment from BuzzFeed Life.
15. Strong Scene Productions, Sorvali told BuzzFeed Life, created an elaborate hoax aimed at poking fun at H&M’s claims at music legitimacy.
And, he stresses, they had no official ties to H&M: “[We] create[d] pieces of art inspired by their new spring collection. We are not a label, but a one-time improvised, collective art project in the vein of Spinal Tap and other parodies with no intentions on anything except for art.”
He went on, “The whole project was to show that not all metal music is what you hear in commercial forms, and different sub-genres exist even within metal music.”