Picking a name is a tricky business.
Just ask Led Zeppelin and The Beatles. Or The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band. Or Phil Collins.
Many moons ago, we went with 'Lux Lisbon’. It’s not been without it’s difficulties, but more it’s struck the right balance of literary-referencing-interest-piquing-cool, incorporating the letter X and people thinking we are Portuguese - which as everyone know is the holy trinity of naming for basically anything.
8 things. Because it's easier and lazier to right like this. And maybe the editors of buzzfeed are reading and I could do with some pocket money.
1. Cliche one. It’s a film reference.
The simple answer is that it is the name of a character from one of my favourite books/films 'Virgin Suicides’……about 5% of people know the reference and they feel like that makes them cool somehow (which is possible, but it’s certainly not a linear relationship). Either way, this is a nice thing.
2. Cliche two. It’s a characters name.
'Lux’ is (along with Bonnie, Mary, Therese and Ceclia) one of the 'Lisbon’ sisters. Hence Lux Lisbon. I should know, but it is just occuring to me as I type this that I’m not sure what 'Lux’ is short for. Whatever it is, Lux is way cooler..right guys!?
3. Cliche three. “It’s ok, because its on of those clever films that is actually really a book”.
'Virgin Suicides’ became a film in 1999, but it was based the 1993 Jeffrey Eugenides book. He is a man who I didn’t realise looked like awesome until looking him up just this second…
4. But unlike most book adaptations, the film is great too….
I will pretend I read the book first. But we all know I didn’t. I became aware of it in 1999 when it was made into a film by Sofia Coppola. Though the book is brilliant, it *is* a cliche (the 4th now) to say 'ah the book is better’ - but its not the case here. The film is ace…
5. …which isn’t always the case.
Because just like the (ace) comedian Tony Law said at the Newcastle Stand last night (6th time I’ve seen him) - “it’s all well and good saying that book is better, but what if the acting in your head is shit?”.
6. Other musicians can be mean :)
I think we’ve got it right, cos over the years, as the film has being a little more cult - there have been those who have clearly wanted to call their band the same thing, have thought of it a few years after me, gone to look it up, and have come to our social media to vent their frustrations at such a 'crappy band taking such a great name’ (paraphrasing). I’m chalking that one up.
It seems to be a film that inspires band names generally to be fair. It’s only recently I found that my great pal Dickon Collinson was in the band named after the film, and called 'The Virgin Suicides’ in Cambridge when he was younger. Truesay. (…that means 'it’s true’. You’re welcome).
7. People can’t read. Or choose not to.
There is a club. A night club. It’s in Lisbon. It’s called Lux. So Lux, Lisbon’*. Sort of.
Despite our web presence clearly being that of a UK indie rock-pop band, I’ve had countless emails and messages asking about reserving tables or trying to blag VIP tickets “for the club night tonight”. We’re not a nightclub. This much is clear to anyone with eyes and the inclination to use them. Which apparently is not all people.
This even stretched to a man trying to deliver beer to the venue in a big van one summer, who was stuck outside the back door, and had managed to contact me on my mobile somehow. I can’t think how many pages (of a band) he much have searched before finding my number. I was, regrettably, unable to assist him in achieving his alcohol delivery ambitions and we parted on friendly terms. It was a good day.
8. Science teaching in this country is going down the pan… :)
I almost always have to spell it out to people L-U-X.. I’ve said the words “as in the unit of light”, in that order, several times more in my life then I ever thought I would do since the bands inception. I still haven’t learned that ½ the time this only causes confusion and elongates the conversation :)
I was joking about the Science teaching by the way. I have no strong opinion on the matter either way. Honestly.
So I’ll leave you here, but also with the thought that, basically, like all scrabble players will tell you, 'X’ is the best letter.
* Just to finish I should also add that I thoroughly recommend the (almost entirely instrumental) soundtrack album by the French band Air is absolutely fabulous. It is probably in my Top 10 albums of all time (and *definitely* in my Top 100 French Instrumental Synth Pop albums of the late 90s).
*Thought not really - it’s more 'Lisbon Lux’ I would have said. The Roundhouse in Camden would be, if it HAD to be, referred to as London Roundhouse, not Roundhouse London right? I digress.