LIVE REVIEW: REFUSED – THE BARTON THEATRE, ADELAIDE [17/11/12]

Reviewed by Meghan Player

When you think of every punk/rock/screamo/emo band that you’ve liked [or hated on] the last 10 years – there is a reasonably high chance that they have been influenced by Refused.

Tonights gig is a bittersweet moment even before the Swedish punks hit the stage. This is the first time the band has played in Adelaide [and indeed, Australia], but it is also the last show they will ever play on Australian shores – with the current [and final] run of dates drawing ever closer to the end.

By the time the tour hits Adelaide tonight, the band are already enjoying a high level of praise and acclaim from various media outlets and fans across the country – and it’s little wonder to see why.

From the moment the black screen drops and the band flies full-force into ‘The Shape of Punk To Come‘, they never let up, slacken their pace or give anything less than their all.

Frontman Dennis Lyxzén throws himself from one side of the stage to the other throughout the entire set – an energy that some frontmen half his age can’t seem to muster at the best of times – whilst comrades Jon Brännström, Kristofer Steen,  drummer David Sandström and bassist Magnus Flagge throw every ounce of their energy and passion into each ensuing song.

Rather Be Dead‘, ‘Liberation Frequency‘ and ‘Refused Are Fucking Dead‘ make the set list tonight – played with so much intensity and at such great volume, it’s almost a miracle that the venue is still standing.

The biggest moshing frenzy comes courtesy of encore ‘New Noise‘ – when a shambolic, almost animalistic roar comes from the standing room floor. Once again – the sound, the delivery, the energy and enthusiasm of the band is greater than anything myself or anyone else expected tonight.

Overall, tonights set is a hard one to put into a matter of words – as even words don’t come close to describing the spectacle that was on full display tonight. Refused don’t pull out any stops during their set, they never take anything likely, and they sure as hell don’t take any prisoners. Their limits seem to know no bounds, they have no rules and subscribe to the simple theory that you only live life once – “there is no dress rehearsal” Lyxzén screams to the crowd.

This is Refused – and they are certainly not dead.

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