Refused’s Dennis Lyxzén Shares His Admiration For Rage Against The Machine


A deep interview with Refused, INVSN, etc. frontman Dennis Lyxzén posted over at this location finds Lyxzén stating he understands if Refused fans don’t make the transition to becoming fans of INVSN. He also confirms that INVSN is thus far being done for the music rather than the money, with Lyxzén financing the project:

“We’re losing so much money. I called, talked to Mike, that’s our manager, when we started getting this together. I said, “Yeah, Kajsa, who plays guitar.” He’s like, “Who’s Kajsa? What are you, five people?”
“We’re actually six.”
He just wrote me an email saying, “Do you hate money?”
I mean, it’s six people. We’re not 19 anymore. People need some money to pay their rent when they come home.
I’m paying for us to be on tour, basically. It’s fine. You know, you start up something new, you got to invest in it. I believe in this band. I believe in these people. It’s an honor to play with them. Of course it doesn’t matter if we make money.”

On whether or not he is a fan of Rage Against The Machine, who took a similar radical approach to their music as Refused did:

“Yeah. When Rage Against the Machine came out that was a big deal. I saw Rage Against the Machine right when the first record came out, and the only reason I saw them was because it was Zack from Inside Out. I loved Inside Out. They’re one of Refused’s favorite bands, actually. We loved Inside Out. We played Inside Out songs. So we went down to Stockholm to see Rage Against the Machine in front of 45 people and we hung out with them all night, because, you know, we were wearing our hardcore shirts and they were like, “Oh, you guys are hardcore kids.”

And then three months later they were like the biggest band in the world. And I followed their career. When they came out it was right when we started Refused, and we didn’t want to be Rage Against the Machine, but we were like, “Holy shit – a mainstream band that’s radical, that talks about politics and that made sense.”

Some of their music has not [aged] 100% well, but some of their songs are still great and some of their lyrics are fantastic.
And I do think it’s sort of the same sentiment. When you grow up as an outsider or a freak or someone that feels left out – for me, taking that negative energy and that hatred, because I hated my teachers, the whole adult generation, my peers, the fucking jocks and bullies. I hated everyone. And I took that energy and I started a band.

I tried to focus that energy into something creative and positive. It’s a weird sort of revenge. No one believed in me. I was not a popular guy in school. The girls did not like me. People just thought I was a fucking weirdo. And to take all that energy… Everyone was like, “This guy’s just out of his fucking mind.” He’s weird. And to take that energy and to turn it into something creative and eventually positive – that was a big deal.

I wrote those lyrics to “The Hate” just to be like – it shaped me into the person that I am today. And I’m not a hateful person at all, quite the opposite. I’m a very easygoing kind of guy, but those formative years, they made me who I am today, and I’m really thankful that the bullies were bullies. I’m really thankful that I had to go through that shit, because it gave me character and it built me up as a person. I had to be a strong person and be like, “I’m not going to follow.”

Because that’s the thing: Peer pressure, in school, it’s so strong. And I never fell for peer pressure. And it made me a strong person today. And it made me fucking go about my own way all my life. And I’m thankful for that.

I wanted to write that song because I think a lot of people recognize that feeling: “Fuck these guys. Fuck them! I’m going to fucking show them.” And if you can turn that into something creative, then I think that’s fantastic.”

On whether or not he expects Refused fans to like INVSN:

“If your favorite band is Refused and Hatebreed, then no, not really. If you like Refused because you like the Stooges and you like Joy Division and you like music, yeah. It’s a good band.

But if why you liked Refused was the raw energy and the power of it – yeah, it’s very different. If your favorite band is Refused, you might like this, but you might also be like “What the hell?”

I mean, I understand. I was at that Rage Against the Machine concert yelling “Play ‘No Spiritual Surrender!’ Fuck this rap-metal shit!”
That’s not what I said, but you know, I’ve been in that situation where I was like, “Why did they do this? This makes no sense.” But I think with Refused that wasn’t – we were a hardcore band and then we did a journey that very few hardcore bands have done. We transcended that genre.”

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