Refused burst onto the scene in Sweden in the early 90s. With their wild aggression and political charges themes, this was a band to be reckoned with. Yet, strangely, perhaps their biggest impact occurred while they were broken up.
In 1998, Refused released their third album, ‘The Shape of Punk to Come’, and it was exactly as advertised. Even though they broke up only months after it was released, this one album has gone on to be one of the most influential in the genre, and found a considerable success after the bands demise.
Fortunately, after 14 years of inactivity (as their infamy and influence grew with a new generation of fans) Refused rose from the ashes. Their reunion tour was a success, and they spent a year reminding everyone that they were fucking Refused. And then again radio silence.
But then in 2015 Refused returned with ‘Freedom’, their fourth full length. And I fucking loved it. It is one of my favourite albums of the last decade. The guitars have such a groove, the rhythms hit hard and that passion and anger is still right at the forefront.
Refused changed the game on their way out the door, and over a decade later returned to reclaim that throne. The world still needed Refused, and every day, for better or worse, it seems like we need them even more.