We just had the weirdest story in the mainstream fashion fields of the latest years. Indeed, the Swedish popular brand H&M created fake bands in order to make the skinny pants and the bomber jackets look more legitimate. The skinny pants and the bomber jackets that they probably produced in masses. Apart from the fact that they completely ignored the fact that people might want to know what they are wearing, cudos for the creativity!

HM 1

The controversial H&M new collection including the fake band names


So let’s try to find out how it all happened. There were these people who bought these jackets. They were feeling super fly in them. Then they decided to have a look on the internet. “What am I wearing?”, they wondered. What they found out wasn’t that pleasing.

Suddenly, H&M is selling clothes with the logos of bands with super controversial imagery. All names are listed on the roster of a label called “Strong Scene Productions”. People started to freak out as neo-Nazi ties started to emerge. People started to think that something is really wrong with H&M. That’s next level sickness, of course.

The whole craziness kept going on. If there is something about the metal scene, it’s that it is very concrete. The magazine Metal Sucks was the first to follow the story. They didn’t know these specific bands. From the very start, they claimed that it all seems fake. Even when they received a press release from the “label guy”, they said that they never heard the name of Ville Huopakangas. They said this person cannot exist. Yet, while the weird metal label was busy answering questions to magazines and posting evidence of these “long forgotten bands”, H&M never made a comment.


Who’s Henri Sorvali, again? Apart from being the one who broke the internet after the dress, he’s part of the Finnish Pagan Metal band Moonsorrow and of the Black Metal band Finntroll. Hmm.

According to his words on Noisey and to his latest posts on the (fake) label’s facebook page, it was all about an art project/protest towards ignorance. He said that metal is nothing to commercialize and if I got it right he was irrecoverably offended by H&M. If he wasn’t, he wouldn’t start such a controversial, sick thing.

HM 2 Moonsorrow

Finnish Pagan Metal Band Moonsorrow. Henri Sorvali is the first, on the left

With all respect to arts, music and to the metal scene, I personally find this protest/campaign one of the worst. I think that Sorvali achieved the completely opposite result of what he was aiming for. Of course, he holds a strong point on the fact that we cannot support/wear/be something without knowing what it stands for. He’ll find me on his side about this. But seriously, this is the most inappropriate way to raise the attention. Having people believe that behind this major fashion brand are sitting neo-Nazis who try to sneak their beliefs to women, men and teenagers it’s absolutely nuts! H&M might have offended some people after coming up with fake bands. They might have proved metal scene ignorant. Whatever! Henri Sorvali and company proved to be offensive and ignorant on a bigger scale. Especially during this super sensitive period when the whole political world is walking on a super thin rope.

Surely trolls are trolls. They don’t care about the damage they might cause. They just want to provoke. Sometimes they succeed, some others not. To me, Henry Sorvali is the victim and the victimizer at the same time. The victim because he caught by his passions and he crossed the line way too much. The victimizer for obvious reasons.

After the storm has somehow ended, it would be really interesting to hear what H&M has to say.


We can all get back to work, it was a fake alarm. Or maybe it’s not that simple. Is there any lesson that we can be taught by that whole thing? OK. They came up with fake band names. So what? We all happened to have worn printed faces of people that we don’t know. We all happened to have worn printed slogans that we have no clue who’s behind them. We all happened to have worn illustrations of people that we don’t know. Why that’s alright? Then, why fake band names are not alright?

Does the whole story come with a realization – something like an epiphany, in a form of a decision? Will it be that from now on, we’ll have to know the origin and the inspiration of what we wear? In all cases, beware of the trolls.

Note: I am not any willing to defend H&M, but when you start thinking bad about them just remember that nothing is pleasing us, anyway. They come up with fake band names, we hate it. They sell merch of popular bands, it’s not real enough for the fans. Oh well, fans, know that H&M actually licensed the logos from the actual bands for TONS of money. The bands agreed on that. Just saying.