If you haven’t been following the modern metal scene, you’ve apparently been missing out on a lot of bands pigging out on pop-culture references in the best way possible.
Last month, a trio of bands went on tour that make Tenacious D look like they’re not high-concept enough. The two co-headliners of the 2017 Mockstrosity Tour were weird enough: Metalachi, a mariachi-themed metal band, shared the stage with Mac Sabbath, a McDonald’s-themed Black Sabbath cover band.
But perhaps the weirdest and most intriguing of the bands was the opener: Okilly Dokilly, a Phoenix-based band that specializes in “Nedal.” Yes, a bunch of nerds created a Ned Flanders-themed metal band—and found an audience. Next week, the band is starting a nationwide headlining tour of its own with a decidedly unusual take on the devil’s music.
Now, lest you think you’re getting yourself into a modern day version of Stryper, the band isn’t afraid of letting out the kind of scream that tells the listener, “this is hardcore.” The guitarists shred. Okilly Dokilly knows how to throw down.
See the band’s “White Wine Spritzer” video, which has gained an impressive 1.95 million views since November. Lots of mustaches and green sweaters, but Ned’s agreeable nature is nowhere to be seen. (Also, the guitarists and bassist are right handed, which means they clearly haven’t been to The Leftorium.)
Of course, the obvious question: Why? Why Ned Flanders? According to an interview the band did with the Australian site Music Feeds, lead screamer Head Ned explained that the strategy was essentially to take the piss out of the metal scene.
“Ned is the antithesis of a heavy metal icon. We started the band to have a laugh and push this absurd narrative,” he explained. “We anticipated playing tiny, empty shows with a small demographic of people actually enjoying it. We thought Ned would make a terrible heavy metal icon, but we enjoyed the idea of him becoming one, so we did it anyway.”
It’s a plot absurd enough for its own episode of The Simpsons.