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Preview: KEN mode 

Noah Bonaparte Pais on the band coming to One Eyed Jacks July 28

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"I want it all!" Jesse Matthewson demands on "The Promises of God," the decibullied tipping point of KEN mode's fifth album, Entrench (Season of Mist). If earthly accomplishments are any measure, his god seems to be listening. The Winnepeg hardcore band (named for Henry Rollins' stage-stalking "Kill Everyone Now mode") won the inaugural Juno Award for Metal/Hard Music Album of the Year with 2011's Venerable, hammering Canada's most venerable metalheads, Anvil. "Hard music" is a deceptively complex descriptor for KEN mode, one best expressed in antonymy: Nothing about Entrench's netherworldly descent is lazy or soft, but neither is it particularly difficult. Beneath the buckets of rage and contempt lies an impressive musical range — see how penultimate query "Why Don't You Just Quit?" resolves a suicidal math problem with 30 seconds of rewarding post-rock, leading into shell-shocked closer "Monomyth," which cribs both Tortoise and Faith No More — and behind these taunting songs lie messages meant not to deride, but to motivate. The staccato barrage of "Your Heartwarming Story Makes Me Sick" puts a glowing cattle prod to self-helping smugness, and "Figure Your Life Out" gradually swings out of control like an unweighted Chair-O-Plane. With life coaches like these, improvement isn't an option, it's an order. Inter Arma and Vibe Ruiner open. Tickets $15. — Noah Bonaparte Pais


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