Iceage, Raw Nerve, Population, ACxDC | Empathy Lodge | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

Iceage, Raw Nerve, Population, ACxDC Soundboard

When: Sat., Aug. 6, 8 p.m. 2011

It's an increasingly poorly kept secret that Scandinavia—to many, the land of corpsepainted black-metal bands and cyborglike pop stars—is home to one of the most compelling punk scenes around. Copenhagen's Iceage are currently leading the pack, and they've attracted a lot of attention with the recent reissue of their debut album, New Brigade (What's Your Rupture?). The teenage foursome obviously grew up on a diet that included lots of Swedish posthardcore icons Refused, but New Brigade also has plenty of gothy ambience, and its pop hooks are even more unabashedly catchy than the ones on The Shape of Punk to Come. Iceage's music has a certain Scandinavian flavor, both in its slate gray atmospherics—with reverb and echo liberally applied to basically everything—and in its precise execution. The songs also make you wonder what it would've sounded like if Ian Curtis and Joe Strummer had started a band together and it was as good as you'd hoped. As Iceage's popularity grows, though, their taste for fascistic imagery—which seems to come out of a perverse aesthetic curiosity and not any actual ideology—is bound to come under closer scrutiny. They should probably cut it the fuck out before people start throwing Skrewdriver into the pile of references. —Miles Raymer

Price: donation requested


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