Here’s some news to dig into! Seattle Public Utilities announced on Monday (April 12) that it has named its tunnel boring machine after local grunge band Mudhoney after a public vote. The giant piece of machinery will be used to build the Ship Canal Water Quality Project’s storage tunnel.
“MudHoney was the top vote-getter after more than 35,000 votes were cast to choose a name among the top five finalists,” SPU said in a press release. “Since the late ’80s, Mudhoney, the Seattle-based foursome whose muck-crusted version of rock, shot through with caustic wit and battened down by a ferocious low end, has taken a stand against overflows in our waterways.”
“You all did it! Thanks for all the votes,” the rockers captioned an Instagram photo of themselves in front of the machine, which is painted red, with the band’s name in yellow, and outlined with a black shadow.
Famed Seattle label Sub Pop, home to Mudhoney, also shared the news on social media. “This is anything but boring,” the label captioned a series of Instagram photos of the band and the machine. It also explained the work MudHoney will be doing for the city. “This summer, ‘MudHoney’ will begin digging a 2.7-mile long, 18-ft 10-in diameter storage tunnel to reduce Seattle’s sewer overflow by 2025!”
A video also accompanied Sub Pop’s Instagram post, showing the machine get its paint job, and its unveiling as the band’s “Nerve Attack” plays. A second video shows muralist Devin Finley painting “Mudhoney” onto the machine.
“I guess, you know, there was the idea that Mudhoney will be digging the s— canal under the ship canal,” bassist Guy Maddison laughed in a video of the unveiling, which the band attended on April 9.
Mudhoney beat out four other finalists to win the honor of having the tunnel boring machine named after the band. The other finalists, according to Seattle Public Utilities, were Daphne, “everyone’s favorite freshwater planktonic crustaceans”; Molly the Mole, “moles dig great holes”; Boris the Plunger, named after the “J.P. Patches” character; and Sir Digs-A-Lot, a play on Seattle rapper Sir Mix-A-Lot’s name.
See one of Sub Pop’s social media posts announcing the honor below:
— Sub Pop Records (@subpop) April 12, 2021