Galactic Empire

Star Wars-themed metal band whose line-up, contrary to what it says on YouTube, is: Boba Sett (drums), Bass Commander (bass), and guitarists Dark Vader, Shadow Ranger and Red Guard. Their first album was released in 2016, when the force, or so they claim, was strong with them. Unsurprisingly, the helmets make it harder to play.

Gandalf's Pikestaff

Schoolboy prog rockers who appear in Jonathan Coe’s fine 2001 novel The Rotters’ Club; the other names they had considered were Lothlorien, Mithril, Minas Tirith and Isildur’s Bane. After one rehearsal, they split and became The Maws of Doom. The novel, named after an album by Hatfield and the North, contains a sentence of 13,955 words, believed to be the longest in English literature. Neils Children, an indie band whose name was inspired by 60s group John’s Children (of which Marc Bolan was briefly a member), appeared in a BBC Radio 4 adaptation of The Rotters’ Club in 2003. A BBC TV dramatisation followed two years later.


The Gap Band

The three Wilson brothers? Forget Brian, Carl and Dennis: we’re talking about Ronnie, Charlie and Robert. They began funking it up in 1967 as The Greenwood, Archer and Pine Street Band, after their neighbourhood in Tulsa, Oklahoma. (Take the initial letters and you have G-A-P.) Ronnie is still touring with the band, though sadly involved in a legal dispute with Charlie. Here in its near-nine-minute glory is I Don’t Believe You Want to Get Up and Dance (Oops!), better known as Oops Up Side Your Head.



Gogol Bordello

Gypsy punk New Yorkers led by Ukraine-born Eugene Hütz; originally called Hütz and The Béla Bartóks, they changed the name because “no one knows who the hell Béla Bartók is in the US” (though the Ukrainian writer Gogol is hardly more of a household name in Middle America). The band’s best known song, Start Wearing Purple, was featured in Leiv Schreiber’s 2005 film Everything is Illuminated, which co-starred Hütz. His father, who made Hütz’s first guitar out of plywood, played with Meridian, one of Ukraine’s earliest rock groups; his son was in a band called Uksusnik, and after arriving in the US as a refugee formed The Fags, then Flying Fuck.

Grandma's Boner

“Remember Grandma’s Boner? Mid-Noughties, when we teamed up with Perpetual Spinners, did a bit of turbo-folk?” The great Super Hans reflects on his musical past with Jez in series 9, episode 5 of the Channel 4 sitcom Peep Show.

The Graves

If you missed the “first generation punk survivors” playing at the Causeway in Warrington, Cheshire, on Saturday 31 August 2002, the free gig featured the classic lineup of Grant Macabre, vocals, Bret Equette, guitar, Didier Lacaze, bass, and Joe Prozac, drums.

Grim Reaper

British heavy metal band, formed in 1979 in Droitwich, Worcestershire, and still performing. Album titles See You in Hell, Fear No Evil and Rock You to Hell give you the general idea. Some of their songs appeared in episodes of Beavis and Butthead. Not to be confused with …

The Grim Reaper

“They weren’t just a band – they were a ruckus,” according to the sadly defunct website Not to be confused with …

The Grim Reapers

Opened for Otis Redding at his final show in Madison, Wisconsin, in 1967. Rick Nielsen and Tom Petersson went on to form Cheap Trick.


“There’s a band called Kittiwakes already; Razorbills sounds like a heavy metal band and Puffins are shit. So Guillemots it is,” declared eccentric Brummie songwriter Fyfe Dangerfield (previously a member of Senseless Prayer). Guillemots cited their influences as “birdsong first and foremost” and there were various bird references and sounds on their acclaimed first album, Through the Windowpane (2006). Get Over It reached No 20 in the UK singles charts in 2008.