Surprising as it may seem, the proto-martyrs of Danish punk Iceage found inspiration in 1960s Italian pop music, while recording sophomore record You’re Nothing. And while You’re Nothing featured the mournful, piano-led ‘Morals’ (said to be inspired by Mina Mazzini), it never truly deviated from the chaotic, feral punk they do so well. However with ‘Forever’, the second taste of third record Plowing Into The Field of Love, the band aren’t just citing Italian pop music in interviews but channelling the spirit of the likes of Ennio Morricone into their music. And ‘Forever’ walks (successfully) a tightrope between morose post-punk introspection and Spaghetti Western grandeur.
While not as playful as lead single ‘The Lord’s Favourite’, ‘Forever’ sees the band employing the country twang that turned heads in the aforementioned track. And what separates the two further is that ‘Forever’ works more as a study in mood and control. Haunting lyrically and sonically, Iceage delve into their darkest recesses, not to solely find fast-paced aggression but to also find texture and gorgeous dark tones that heighten the confusion, aggression and self-loathing found on ‘Forever’. And with every build and forced vocal inflection, Iceage toy with an audience, willing them on to press the accelerator. But instead of finding bursts of fury, we as an audience sink into oblivion with the band as Elias Bender Rønnenfelt’s vocals are caressed by the sounds of marching drums, violins, horns and country guitar. And in that oblivion a beautiful cacophony emerges, signalling an inspiring turn from a band who often found catharsis in chaos rather than control.
Plowing Into The Field of Love is released on the 6/7th October on Matador Records. Find ‘Forever’ and the track-listing below:
1. On My Fingers
2. The Lord’s Favorite
3. How Many
4. Glassy Eyed, Dormant and Veiled
6. Let It Vanish
7. Abundant Living
9. Cimmerian Shade
10. Against The Moon
12. Plowing Into The Field Of Love