The Refused are a punk/hardcore band from Sweden who split up in the 90’s. I first discovered them through the singer’s new band, The (International) Noise Conspiracy, which quickly became one of my favorites and I never missed a show when they came to town.
Last year news broke that The Refused were getting back together to do some shows and I became very excited to see Dennis Lyxzén (the singer from Noise Conspiracy) rock out again. Shanman called him “the Mick Jaggar of punk” and it’s totally true. He has a repertoire of microphone tricks that he’ll unleash during a performance and I spent the entire show watching his mic swinging around and flying up in the air before, with a flick of his hand, he would pull it back in time to sing.
The songs were pretty much all the ones off their last (and most popular) album but they did throw in a cover of TV Eye by The Stooges, which The (International) Noise Conspiracy had also covered on one of their live albums.
They’re a political band and as such we were encouraged to support the recently-jailed Pussy Riot members in Russia. The crowd got the message and during the encore break everyone began chanting “Free Pussy Riot!” which impressed the band.
Opening the night was a band called The Bronx who were OK but I was more impressed with the gigantic banner featuring an angry gorilla with the words, “The Beat That Kills.”