U.K. Punk Band ‘Slaves’ Changes Name to ‘Soft Play’—“The Name Doesn’t Represent Who We Are as People”

In 2020, there were two bands named Slaves. Now there are none (that we know of).

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The California post-hardcore band, Slaves, changed its name to Rain City Drive. This was done for two reasons: to shed the potentially offensive name and to distance themselves from the U.K. punk band Slaves.

Now the U.K. band has changed its name to Soft Play and is apologizing to its fans and others who may have been offended.

“Until now, we’ve not been able to comment on what’s going on with the band, as life-changing events have left us on hiatus, just trying to get through each day,” wrote the band on Instagram on Friday (December 9). “There were times over the last few years when we never thought we would ever step foot on a stage together again. However, we feel that the time has now come to pick up where we left off. Before we do that though, we want to address something important.

“When we called our band Salves, it was intended solely as a reference to the guide of day-to-day life. As younger men, we responded to criticism of the name from a place of fear and defensiveness. Feeling backed into a corner, our own pride caused us to fight for a name we weren’t even sure we wanted anymore. It felt at times as if our band name had defined us and we were scared of what might happen if we changed it.

“However, we now recognize that our original intent doesn’t change the fact that the name Slaves is an issue. In this day and age, we believe it is very important that people change and make improvements no matter how far down the line they are. The name doesn’t represent who we are as people or what our music stands for any longer. We want to sincerely apologize to anyone we’ve offended.

“We are aware that people have differing opinions on the name, we hope you can accept and respect our decision and not continue the argument between yourselves. When it comes down to it, the music and the community surrounding our band are what matter the most and we don’t want anything to stand in the way of the community being as inclusive as possible. Our music is for anyone and everyone.

“With that being said, we are very happy to be back together again and are excited for what the future holds.

“Our new name is SOFT PLAY.

“Love Laurie and Isaac.


The band has 138,000 followers on Instagram and so far the post has over 31,500 “likes.”

One comment on the post read, “I’m glad you’re back but confused as to the change. Time will tell if it was a good idea, but I am sad to see you gents go down this path of catering. Also what the hell does Soft Play even mean? And you still haven’t changed your Spotify name yet so you obviously don’t want this too much.”

Another wrote, “Welcome back guys, really digging the name!! 💜💜”

Photo by Shirlaine Forrest/WireImage

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