Refused’s classic album was actually their most hated when it came out
Here's a book idea. Somebody should write one called Your Fans Suck. The potential author's first phone call would have to be to the members of Refused. When the iconic Swedish hardcore unit had their acclaimed 1998 LP The Shape Of Punk To Come released, it was universally reviled. Refused frontman Dennis Lyxzén explained to APTV how their classic album was actually their most hated.
"We did The Shape Of Punk To Come in many ways, as a protest against what we felt was the conservative idea of what punk and hardcore should be," recalls Lyxzén. "In all honesty, [the album title] was like a piss-take. It could've been called Fuck You. It's a very adventurous record. It was made by a band on the brink of collapse."
In the video, Lyxzén describes how the making of this hardcore classic was an immense period of dysfunction all around. Refused felt in their hearts that they were creating an ambitious work. But he admits that many times, they were their own worst enemies. He also discusses how going back to that album and looking forward at today's bands inspired them to take the role of the group Samurai in the new role-playing videogame Cyberpunk 2077.
Despite everything Refused went through, Lyxzén knows it was all worth it. After all, the status of that album was the impetus for the band to reform in 2012. And unlike most reunions, Refused aren't running on the heady fumes of nostalgia. (2015's Freedom and 2019's War Music are all the proof you need.) "Punk rock and The Shape Of Punk To Come are the two biggest defining factors of my life, ever," he says. "And that's pretty cool."