Within their universe, ’90s Swedish punks Refused were a hugely important band, but they were never big enough to end up on American TV. So it’s a measure of how their legend has grown in the years they’ve been away that the reunion-tour version of the band can show up on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon in 2012 and get the royal treatment. The band blasted through “New Noise” on the show and then, as a web bonus, also did “The Shape Of Punk To Come.” And there’s a bit of a weird disconnect in seeing it, since “New Noise” should never be performed in front of anything other than a roiling moshpit. But the band held back nothing, and the performances let you see just how much showmanship and craft went into their assault. Watch both performances below.
The Refused reunion tour, of course, marches on, and I’m now that much more determined to see this thing before it blinks out of existence again.