KEN Mode: Entrench

Muscular fifth album from acclaimed hardcore mob

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KEN mode means ‘Kill Everything Now Mode,’ and the Canadian crew have certainly sounded off with enough ire on past albums to justify their name. Their fifth album, Entrench, however, sees them upping the aggro to new, beautifully violent heights.

Even by the band’s own brutal standards, this explodes with the ferocity of a dozen pipe bombs, sometimes coming across like a more caustic, unstable Every Time I Die without the pop hooks. There’s maybe even a twinge of early Mastodon, from the times they sought to crush and destroy.

Needless to say Km have outdone themselves again, and this is their finest album yet. Highlights include the blistering and somewhat anthemic Your Heart-warming Story Makes Me Sick, which crackles with sarcastic malice, and the reminiscent-of-latter-day-Converge bluster of The Promises Of God. They’re able to slow it down on some tracks, although they still maintain the requisite focus and intensity.

This is great stuff, and anyone with even the slightest fondness for metallic hardcore would be doing themselves a disservice by not paying attention.