Danish post-punk rockers Iceage have dropped a new coronavirus-inspired single, “Lockdown Blues.” The track directly addresses the current, troubled, ever-evolving reality that is life amidst COVID-19, and specifically the global lockdowns schools, borders and gatherings of all size as we know them.
“We’ve felt the urge to touch base now that the physical touch has been suspended and contribute an effort to raise spirit in the face of adversity,” the band said in a statement. “Our thoughts are with all those in jeopardy to the many various horrors in relation to the crisis, those situated on the front lines and those who are direly compromised. Stay safe, take care and keep up the good fight.”
The single is bluesy and blunt, acknowledging a past reality that now looks like a utopia. “Didn’t grasp what I had until / It was robbed absent too soon,” lead singer Elias Rønnenfelt laments, capping an opening verse that revisits the seemingly simplistic joys and fears associated with gatherings so easily taken for granted. “Covid-19 Lockdown Blues,” the chorus begins. “The only way out is through.”
The song ultimately addresses the shared universal experience the virus has foisted upon the majority of the world’s population. “A wraithlike peril spread across our seven seas” has touched seemingly every corner of the world, driving the majority of the population into a quarantine with an indeterminate end point. For now, there’s just waiting.
The single hits on universal feelings of nihilism that have naturally bubbled up, stemming from the inability of any layman’s action to have any tangible effect on the virus, lamenting “Motion’s no vaccine.” In perhaps it’s most cutting moment, it acknowledges the absence so many feel at being locked out and physically away from so many people and things they love dearly, whether they acknowledged it as recently as last month or not, intoning, “How the itching for lost touch is deafening.”
While the song and lyric video can be accessed for free via YouTube, it can also be purchased via Bandcamp for as little as one Euro. All proceeds will go directly to Doctors Without Borders, an independent healthcare organization that provides medical care globally.