Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks’ new album (out August 23) is called Mirror Traffic, but, according to a recently posted e-mail exchange, it was originally going to be called L.A. Guns (at the suggestion of former Silver Jews front man David Berman). However, Malkmus’s lawyers nixed the title when they learned of the existence of a band with the same name. After reviewing the case of Pump, Inc. v. Collins Management, Inc., in which “an obscure group called Pump unsuccessfully sued Aerosmith for putting out their album Pump,” the legal team wrote:
The theoretical possibility of regular confusion (sometimes called “forward confusion”) cannot be discounted, since the L.A. Guns are an established group, certainly more famous than SM’s album and quite possibly more famous than SM himself.
According to some (quick) research, the L.A. Guns were a California-based glam-metal band who underwent a ton of very confusing lineup changes. (Apparently, all the shuffling eventually gave rise to two “rival incarnations” of the group.) Their most successful album was 1989’s Cocked & Loaded, and their biggest hit seems to be “The Ballad of Jayne.”
Stephen Malkmus started Pavement. Pavement! Does the phrase “highly influential” mean nothing anymore!?