Swedes Raised Fist Eschew Rock Revival

Swedes <b>Raised Fist</b> Eschew Rock Revival
There's lots of talk about the Swedish rock revival these days, but lurking behind all the toxic died hair and smooth dance moves is one of the most energetic, passionate and moving hardcore bands thriving today, Raised Fist. The band's new album Dedication (Burning Heart/Epitaph) takes any preconceptions of Swedish rock and smashes the hell out of them with a volatile combination of old-school hardcore, a tinge of metallic sheen, powerful melodies and emotional vocals.

They've been playing for nearly ten years; clearly, this is no bullshit rock revival. "I don't give a fuck about that," says vocalist Alexander. "We don't fit in [with that scene]. If we were to play the MTV music awards, it would be a scene where people looked at us like monkeys. They'd want to see us every year — it'd be a fucking freak show for them."

Even though it would pay the bills, Alexander laughs at the thought of Raised Fist donning ties, adding "the" to their name and playing retro rock. For Raised Fist, the release of playing honest, fast and loud can't be beat. "We've been the same for ten years, and we've only gotten harder over the years. It's about a feeling. You get angry, that's it. You get angry all the time. It's always there. You just have to put on the news and you'll get angry."

And although the band bashes and pummels, they also write songs that will worm into the listener's brain after one listen, thanks to clever song writing, catchy riffs and mosh-ready breakdowns. So for those who still turn to music for a cathartic release and a coping mechanism, Dedication is a masterpiece, even if the band doesn't orchestrate their onstage moves or have flammable heads of hair.