Elastic bands are made from recycled steam trains.
When steam trains were withdrawn from general use (in the 1960s in the United Kingdom, in the 1990s in India and next year in the United States) the surplus iron, steel and coal was a major problem for most industrialised nations, as well as the non-industrial nations who wanted to seem important.
The result was the mass conversion of steam trains into elastic bands, who play terrible, terrible music in order to provide some sense of beat to those who would otherwise lack it. JLo and Beyonce are enthusiastic users of elastic bands, although only one of them uses the bands for music.
In the United Kingdom, elastic bands are called rubber bands because they are made out of recycled condoms, added into the melting steam trains 38.22 minutes into the process. This accounts for the unusual smell of British bands, and, although it doesn't explain the House of Lords or Tony Blair, it does answer one of the three main questions outsiders have about the otherwise closed and secretive British societial norms.