Liverpool based rock band Kling Klang, currently on tour supporting Portishead, has been legally threatened by Kraftwerk for using the name Kling Klang. The band has, obviously, borrowed the name from Kraftwerk's studio in Düsseldorf. According to this Drowned in Sound article, Kling Klang (the band) are not that keen on the idea of coming up with a new name. Quoted from the article:
The band seem to be defiant though – management asserting that: “even though it is fairly true that Kling Klang drew the inspiration for their name from the admiration for Kraftwerk’s immense contribution to modern music, it is also true that the expression ‘kling klang’ is not Kraftwerk’s creation.
“In fact they have registered as a trademark the word ‘klingklang’, without hyphens or separation spaces and that is for certain their ‘invention’.”
"We do understand where Kraftwerk's request originates from," the statement continued; "and that we will do our best to find a way to make every party happy and to solve the thing peacefully because we do admire Kraftwerk very much. But still, Kling Klang as a name has an affective meaning for all the band."
The band intend to consult a legal advisor, saying that they are “not too prone to accept Kraftwerk’s request”. They go on to state that the multimillionaire kraut-rock legends should be "paternally gratified" that a band have chosen to find inspiration in the work they’ve produced.
“It is not like ‘Kling Klang’ is a brand name, like ‘Xerox’,” the band's management continue. “It is an idiomatic German phrase, so we really don’t see the substance of their claim. We were aware of Kraftwerk’s notorious bent in sueing people and we were expecting the notice from one moment to another since we first stepped on German soil.
“And they way they have notified the claim was even funny… We received the letter in the form of a fax from some random promoter and the notice had all our addresses on it, kinda ‘we know where you live’ style.”
Note: The Drowned In Sound article has just been changed and shortened. It now reflects the "views of the management" only, and most of the above text has been deleted.
Bonus: Pictured above, front/left, are Kraftwerk's Synthanorma Modell 316, made by Fa. Matten + Wiechers in Bonn in 1976. This picture is from the Computer World era.
Other things named Kling Klang.
The songs that Kraftwerk stopped.