Single Review: Refused "Blood Red"
Search and Destroy Records
With their brand-new album War Music releasing in mid-October (2019), Swedish post-hardcore icons Refused have given us a taste of what we can expect from it with the release of the lead single, “Blood Red.” A long, albeit simple, 40 second intro with a guitar lick and drums gradually pulls you in and revs you up for the moment the band comes crashing in. Dennis Lyxzen (lead vocalist) spits out the lyrics with the familiar snarl/throat screams that we’ve come to expect from him, while the powerful guitars wrap around you and assault you from all sides – crunching you this way, and slaying you that way. At the heart of the songs is the scream-a-long with lyrics who entice a “standing strongly united in what you believe in” type of message with lines such as “Rise, let action speak,” and “joined we could represent the last gasp of the one percent,” the latter alluding to the fight, he sings, coming “down to us and them.” The big question is who is this specific line directed at? Who is the fight between? By leaving this 100% open to listener interpretation, the Refused have found a way to reach through the speakers and give the listener the chance to make this song relate to their own personal enemies – whomever, or whatever, they may be. “Blood Red” acts a bold, much needed, battle cry, which in its own way encourages us to figure out where our commonality lies with one another, and then unite together as one to fight that said enemy.