Concert Reviews

Iceage at NXNE Hub, NXNE 2015

The area right in front of the stage was empty at the NXNE Hub as people huddled along the walls or stood at the bar drinking. Maybe they did it out of boredom waiting for the bands to switch over or maybe the crowd present wasn’t sure what to expect from a post-punk band from Denmark. After starting their set a few minutes late the band walked up slowly with the lights low. Guitarist Johan Surrballe Wieth played an almost five minute solo intro with the occasion bass rumble or drum hit. The first two songs sounded like a slow death march with lots of feedback and rumbling, but they also played a few songs that could almost be called dance-y in their own weird way. 

The crowd was filled mostly with music nerds and hipsters (and a mostly female crowd) but that didn’t stop a few guys from starting a mosh pit to the delight of some but the chagrin of most. Singer Elias Bender Rønnenfelt growled and screamed his vocals to the point that you could understand him even less than on their records, which is saying a lot. During a song a guy close-ish to the stage was on his phone doing who knows what (and frankly it doesn’t matter) but Rønnenfelt didn’t seem to appreciate this so he jumped into the crowd and took the guys phone away from him and put it in his pocket. Luckily near the end of the set Rønnenfelt took the phone out of his pocket and left it on an amp (the guy climbed onto the stage after the set to get it back). 

Writers edit: The man who had his phone taken away was Richard Trapunski who is the Editor-in-Chief of Chart Attack. As a fellow concert reviewer I know what he was going through. I use my cellphone to take notes so that I can write reviews later on and remember all the minor details. When I’m at the very front sometimes I find it a bit awkward to be typing away as I know the people on stage can see me. Depending on the vibe I will wait for appropriate times to pull it out. Luckily I have never had a band of accusing me of texting or not paying attention to the show, but once I had some girl make some snide comments after a Will Butler show that Sarah Rix our music editor heard and correctly her promptly. As a reviewer we try to be courteous to other fans and the artists on stage, but we have a job to do and we want to be at these shows as much as the fans do, unless our bosses force us because some lame band will get hits on the site, but that is another story. Richard, after reading your review I’m glad you can laugh at the situation as I probably would have handled it much worse.

Honestly the band scared me a bit, but I was glad I got to see them as I missed them at Bonnaroo last week where they were playing. Their music is some of the most moody and dark work being created today and they certainly put on an interesting live show even if each band member looks more scary and intense than the next. The venue was an odd choice for them to be booked at, as they are more suited to a punk club billed with other metal/punk/hard rock bands.

About author

Music Editor at Live in Limbo and Host of Contra Zoom podcast. Dakota is a graduate of Humber College's Acting for Film and Television. He now specializes in knowing all random trivia. He writes about music, sports and film. Dakota's life goal is visit all baseball stadiums, he's at 7.