Iceage–The Lord’s Favorite

If the last thing you expected from pseudo-fascist, Danish post-punk brats Iceage to do for their third album was go all country, welcome to the club.  The band successfully left their old selves in the dust and blazed a stellar trail onward with Plowing Into The Field Of Love.  Their first single from the album, The Lord’s Favorite, was a left field shocker in the best possible way.  The cowpunk stunner opens with a rockabilly rattle before plunging into a ramshackle chaos that shouldn’t work at all but somehow does brilliantly.  It also sees lead singer Elias Bender Rønnenfelt doing his best Nick Cave impression, brooding and demanding as he declares he is God’s favorite.  Yet he’s also vulnerable, opening with the lines: You’re probably the only one, yet it’s hard to admit, that can save me/And I never like to ask for a helping hand, but I do now.  The writing here is lightyears above the band’s previous albums, poetic and honest in surprising ways, vivid in its detail.  Just look at how he describes his savior after a shambolic night out: Her cheap, sweat-smother makeup makes her face/look as if dissolving yet full of grace.  Rønnenfelt credits being more comfortable writing in English, but he’s clearly grown in other ways.  It’s the type of song that grabs you by the throat and doesn’t let go, utterly enthralling and surprising.  By the time Rønnenfelt declares, “I think I am the only one breathing on this planet tonight,” you know exactly what he means.  That’s how alive the song makes you feel.

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