Iceage, Hand of Dust and Less Win should be no strangers to our readers or Danish music fans in general, yet it is still impressive that the former should be able to sell out a venue like Jazzhouse two nights in a row. Only 16 months ago, for my very first review at Here Today, I saw Iceage showcase their sophomore album, You´re Nothing, to a crowd half the size.
The intervening time saw the release of Plowing into the Field of Love, perhaps the bands most critically acclaimed album. However, the band that I hear on that record, and see tonight, is not the buzzing hive of originality their fans like to present. Though talented in their own ways, and certainly possessing remarkable and abstruse tastes, Iceage appear to suffer from a desire to live up to their own images. Tracks like “The Lord´s Favorite” are admirable imitations of the likes of Nick Cave and the Gun Club, but no amount of stumbling around on the stage is going to transform them into their idols.
While the rest of the Copenhagen punk scene is under the spell of gothy Americana, Less Win combine the best elements of British post-punk in the Bunnymen tradition, with fast and technical American post-hardcore. Their energy is way above most of their peers, steamrolling through their set.
Unfortunately Iceage spent a large part of the first half of their set trying to fix technical difficulties with the guitar. It´s a revealing moment, as the band hug each other, whisper, and generally do their best to ignore the audience. I can´t blame their diffidence towards an audience whose first rows are barely pre-pubescent. Despite being disappointed by the lack of commitment on the part of the band, I am convinced Iceage still have the potential to ignore the adulation and use their tastes and talents in a more creative way.