Iceage – You’re Nothing


Artist

Album

You're Nothing

Label

Matador Records

Year

2013

Genre

For Fans Of

Fucked Up - Titus Andronicus - Ceremony

Summary

Jagged, sonic hardcore collides head-on with a post-punk act.

Rating

70 / 100

Iceage are a punk rock band out of Copenhagen, Denmark. In 2011, they released ‘New Brigade‘, a punchy, aggressive debut that saw the album receive widespread praise from critics. Two years later, with ‘You’re Nothing‘, they’ve released a sophomore album that sees a heavy post-punk influence get thrown into a cage match with the raucous, unrelenting hardcore noise of the band’s earlier work.

With album opener and single ‘Ecstasy‘, those who enjoyed ‘New Brigade‘ will notice an immediate change. For the first minute or so, the track feels indebted to Joy Division, before slowing down into an emotive, dissonant breakdown with frontman Elias Bender Rønnenfelt screaming desperately, “Pressure, pressure, oh God no!”, only to launch straight back into the pop sensibilities that preceeded it.

The song provides a solid starting point as the listener explores the 12-track release. Instantly darting between quite catchy post-punk rhythms and the chaotic frenzy, crashing, sonic guitars and savage, emotive yelps of Rønnenfelt, ‘You’re Nothing‘ feels like a concerted effort to make the band’s sound more accessible, while being unique enough to stay interesting, and spazzed out enough to appeal to fans of the band’s raw, jagged earlier work.

However, the refined, polished nature of ‘You’re Nothing‘ (at least in comparison to ‘New Brigade‘) doesn’t stop the record from feeling full of energy. While not as full-on in its delivery as it predecessor, ‘You’re Nothing‘ maintains a steady punk vigour, as noted especially on tracks ‘Coalition‘, ‘Burning Hand‘ and ‘Rodfæstet‘, the latter of which is a fairly straight-up, dynamic punk rock song, sung in the Danish band’s native tongue. The idea of witnessing one of Iceage’s oft-frenetic live performances is remarkably enticing following a few listens of ‘You’re Nothing‘.

Conclusion

Iceage seem like a band quite set on doings things "their way" and playing by their own rules. ‘You’re Nothing’ has the Danish outfit polish up on their sound to craft an album that retains the excitement of their first album, while growing more intriguing, accessible and ultimately – enjoyable.

Tracklisting

1. Ecstasy
2. Coalition
3. Interlude
4. Burning Hand
5. In Haze
6. Morals
7. Everything Drifts
8. Wounded Hearts
9. It Might Hit First
10. Rodfæstet
11. Awake
12. You’re Nothing

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