In 1998, just as Refused was at the apex of their influence and creativity, the Swedish anti-capitalist hardcore punk band disintegrated while on a slate of US tour dates. The breakup, which looked rather like Refused simply exhausted its infinite reservoir of energy, was filmed by the band’s Kristofer Steen and released as “Refused Are Fucking Dead.”
For anyone who happened to hear the song “New Noise” off of the 1998 LP “The Shape of Punk to Come,” a paradigm shift occurred in what punk could be. Like Wire and Gang of Four before them, Refused challenged the prevailing order of punk, which had long since descended into predictable musical and lyrical formulas.
On “The Shape of Punk to Come,” Refused experimented with blending electronica, jazz and prog-rock into their hardcore repertoire. The album is now, quite rightly, ranked as one of the best punk albums of all time.
In the last few years the band has slowly reconstituted itself. And, like any band lost to time, Refused announced their reformation for Coachella 2012. An odd choice given the band’s outspoken anti-capitalist lyrics and rhetoric, but not altogether unexpected since lead singer Dennis Lyxzen’s previous band, The International Noise Conspiracy, played a very political Coachella set on the eve of the 2004 elections.
Now, Refused is set to play Late Night With Jimmy Fallon on April 23rd at 12:35am |11:35pm cst. This is the band’s first ever television appearance, and Fallon certainly has the bona fides for welcoming some of the most creative bands in independent music on his show.
Watch the music video for “New Noise” below and check out Refused’s North American tour dates.
Refused Tour Dates:
04-13 Indio, CA – Coachella
04-18 San Francisco, CA – The Warfield
04-20 Indio, CA – Coachella
04-22 New York, NY – Terminal 5
04-23 New York, NY – Terminal 5
07-15 Atlanta, Ga. @ Masquerade Music Park
07-16 Silver Spring, Md. @ The Fillmore
07-18 Brooklyn, N.Y. @ Williamsburg Summer Garden
07-19 Philadelphia, Pa. @ Penn’s Landing (Riot Fest)
07-20 Boston, Mass. @ House of Blues
07-21 Montreal, Quebec @ Metropolis
07-22 Toronto, Ont. @ The Sound Academy
07-23 Toronto, Ont. @ The Sound Academy
07-25 Royal Oak, Mich. @ Royal Oak Music Theater
07-26 Chicago, Ill. @ Congress Theatre