Refused at the Vogue
There’s nothing like failing to make you realize how good you once had it. Well, maybe failure is too harsh a term to describe the (International) Noise Conspiracy, the band that Sweden’s Dennis Lyxzén founded after Refused imploded in 1998. But, really, as much as it was fun to play Marxist revolutionary with INC, all people really wanted was the return of the band responsible for the landmark swan song The Shape of Punk to Come. And who could blame them? After all, there haven’t been many more stunning achievements in punk than “New Noise”, to the point where even labelling the song punk seems like a slap in the face. Well, proving that Marxism might be nice but the smell of money is even nicer, Refused has returned from the dead, pulling into Vancouver for a two-night reunion stand at the Vogue (Sunday and Monday [August 26 and 27]). And this is one of those rare times when you can’t blame a band for cashing in, considering that Lyxzén and company did things right the first time, breaking up right before the release of the record that made them famous.