A lot has changed in the 17 years since the release of seminal album ‘The Shape of Punk to Come,’ but Refused still clearly have an appetite for an atmospheric intro. Opening with ethereal chanting and a slow-burning crescendo of guitars and drums, new track ‘Dawkins Christ’ recalls the band’s anthemic 98’ song ‘New Noise’.
But, while ‘New Noise’ always felt like a wild dog straining against a leash before bursting forth, ‘Dawkins Christ’ is an entirely different beast. In the years they’ve been away, Dennis Lyxzén and co. have been honing their edge, bringing a more focused approach to ‘Dawkins Christ’ as a lesson in controlled aggression. Now, the feral beast’s replaced by a disciplined but deadly attack dog.
While the aggression may be more focused than the last time Refused assaulted our ears, there’s no questioning its presence on ‘Dawkins Christ’. Dennis Lyxzén’s vocals are as ferocious as ever, while the guitars stab in and out with needlelike precision.
For some, the reincarnated Refused of ‘Freedom’ will never hold the same significance as they did on ‘The Shape of Punk to Come’, but with ‘Dawkins Christ’ they’ve sent a clear message. They’re still at the top of the game that they helped to shape.
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