Top 10 Metal Bands that Had Previous Names

These metal bands were originally formed under other names. Most of them changed their names for copyright reasons - to avoid copyright issues.
What name sounds better - the old one or the new one?

The Top Ten

1 Death (Mantas) Death (Mantas) Death was an American death metal band formed in 1983 by Chuck Schuldiner. Death is considered to be one of the most influential bands in heavy metal and a pioneering force in death metal. Its debut album, Scream Bloody Gore, has been widely regarded as the first death metal record, while the band's more.

Death fits better. Actually, the best name possible, considering the subgenre - death metal. - Metal_Treasure

2 Black Sabbath (Earth) Black Sabbath (Earth) Black Sabbath were a Heavy Metal band formed in Birmingham, England in 1968 by guitarist and songwriter Tony Iommi, singer John "Ozzy" Osbourne, bassist and main lyricist Geezer Butler and drummer Bill Ward. more.

Named the band after one of their own songs. - Metal_Treasure

3 Savatage (Avatar) Savatage (Avatar) Savatage is an American heavy metal band founded by the brothers Jon and Criss Oliva in 1978 at Astro Skate in Tarpon Springs, Florida.

They were forced to change its name due to copyright issues. They combined the words "Savage" and "Avatar". Jon Oliva recalls:
"We wrote out Avatar on a big piece of poster paper... and Criss said, 'Put a big S (like Kiss) in front of Avatar,' and it was like, 'SAVATAR.' I was like, 'That sounds like a really bad dinosaur,' but we liked the way it looked. So then finally, out of nowhere, I don't remember who it was - it might have been Criss' wife or my wife - somebody said, 'Take the R out and put a GE,' and we did, and it was SAVATAGE. I was like, 'That was cool,' not 'SA-VA-TAGE,' but 'SAVATAGE,' like 'SAVA' for Savage and 'TAGE' for mystical or whatever." - Metal_Treasure

4 Blind Guardian (Lucifer's Heritage) Blind Guardian (Lucifer's Heritage) Blind Guardian is a German power metal band formed in the mid-1980s in West Germany. They are often credited as one of the seminal and most influential bands in the power metal and speed metal subgenres. Heavily influenced by Queen, they use the technique of overdubbing. They also incorporate large more.

Blind Guardian were formed in 1984 as Lucifer's Heritage but changed the name in 1987.
Their new name was inspired by the title of one of their first songs (Guardian Of The Blind). - Metal_Treasure

5 Iced Earth (Purgatory) Iced Earth (Purgatory) Iced Earth is an American heavy metal band from Tampa, Florida. It was formed in 1985 under the name Purgatory by guitarist and main songwriter Jon Schaffer and original drummer Greg Seymour.
6 Meshuggah (Metallien) Meshuggah (Metallien) Meshuggah is a Swedish progressive metal band from Umeå, formed in 1987. They are often considered the fathers or founders of the djent metal sub genre due to their use of downtuned guitars. They are also known for their song “Bleed”, which is known for its extremely complicated instrumentation, more.

They took the name Meshuggah from the Hebrew word for "crazy". - Metal_Treasure

7 Helloween (Iron Fist) Helloween (Iron Fist) Helloween is a German power metal band founded in 1984 in Hamburg, Northern Germany. The band is a pioneering force in the power metal genre, and their second and third studio albums, Keeper of the Seven Keys: Part I and Part II, are considered masterpieces of the genre.
8 Lamb of God (Burn the Priest) Lamb of God (Burn the Priest) Lamb of God is an American heavy metal band from Richmond, Virginia. Formed in 1994, the group consists of vocalist Randy Blythe, guitarists Mark Morton and Willie Adler, bassist John Campbell, and drummer Chris Adler.

Both names have religious references. - Metal_Treasure

9 Lacuna Coil (Ethereal) Lacuna Coil (Ethereal) Lacuna Coil is an Italian metal band from Milan. Since their formation in 1994, the group has had two name changes, being previously known as Sleep of Right and Ethereal.
10 Exciter (Hell Razor) Exciter (Hell Razor) Exciter is a Canadian speed metal band from Ottawa, Ontario, formed in 1978 as Hell Razor. In 1980 they changed the name Exciter. They are widely considered to be one of the first speed metal bands and a seminal influence of the thrash metal genre.

The band Hell Razor formed in 1978, in Ottawa, Canada. In 1980 they chenged the name. - Metal_Treasure

The Contenders

11 Moonspell (Morbid God) Moonspell (Morbid God) Moonspell is a Portuguese gothic metal band. Formed in 1992, the group released their first EP Under the Moonspell in 1994, a year before the release of their first album Wolfheart.

They changed the name in 1992. - Metal_Treasure

12 Mezarkabul (Pentagram) Mezarkabul (Pentagram) Mezarkabul (formerly known as Pentagram) is a Turkish metal band formed by Hakan Utangaç and Cenk Ünnü.

There was already a metal band called Pentagram and they had to change the name - they just used the Turkish word for Pentagram. - Metal_Treasure

13 Pantera (Eternity, Gemini) Pantera (Eternity, Gemini) Pantera was an American Heavy Metal band formed in 1981 by guitarist Dimebag Darrell and drummer Vinnie Paul. The band started out as a Glam Metal act in the 1980s with little success. After discarding their original lead vocalist and enlisting Phil Anselmo, the band signed a major record deal with more.

These were the First names suggested for Pantera as Vinnie Paul has stated in a Interview. - christangrant

Christangrant, were these 2 names only ideas for names or Pantera used them? - Metal_Treasure

14 Bullet For My Valentine (Jeff Killed John) Bullet For My Valentine (Jeff Killed John) Bullet for My Valentine are a Welsh metalcore/emo band from Bridgend, formed in 1998. The band is composed of Matthew Tuck (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Michael Paget (lead guitar, backing vocals), Michael Thomas (drums) and Jamie Mathias (bass guitar). Former members include Nick Crandle and Jason more.
15 GWAR (Gwaaarrrgghhlllgh) GWAR (Gwaaarrrgghhlllgh) Gwar, often styled as GWAR, is an American heavy metal band formed in Richmond, Virginia, United States, in 1984, composed of and operated by a frequently rotating line-up of musicians, artists and filmmakers collectively known as Slave Pit Inc.
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