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Limelight Oct 3rd



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KEN Mode | Loved


KEN Mode | ‘Loved’

Anticipointment is a horrendous thing for many: the anticipation for something is great that the actual reality can only be a disappointment.

And that’s certainly been the case with this new album from Canada’s finest hardcore/noise rock act.

His Editorialness isn’t a fan of this LP, which I’m sure is a disappointment to him as he’s on record as being a fan of the last two (this and this) and, after a few listens, I have to agree.

The clear, distilled songwriting that had very much come to the forefront with ‘Success’ had just been abandoned in favour of returning to their comfort zone.

Certainly, the first song (‘Doesn’t Feel Pain Like He Should’) doesn’t exactly get the juices flowing.

Although a respectable enough song, it lacks the nuance of recent KEN Mode songs that made them stand out from the pack. The production overdoes the noise factor, but doesn’t overpower the listener the way a track of this ilk should.

‘The Illusion of Dignity’ is a much more welcome step in the right direction, throwing in elements of Beecher and NoMeansNo. There’s more passion evident in the vocals, and the various changes allow for a more fulfilling experience.

But is it a match for ‘Dead Actors?’ Definitely not. And it’s a formula carried on throughout the LP, where nothing is truly terrible, just insipid.

I’m sure the phrase “back to basics” has been thrown about in interviews and in band practise but, the fact of the matter is, this album is nowhere near as good as ‘Success’.

It certainly sounds good if you’re walking about when the sun is making the heat stick to your cotton shirt, but there’s little in the way of longevity or memorability. At times, it comes across as if they felt they had to put something out there, and quick.

Nice to have them back, but only a fool would argue that they’ve sounded better.

And why does the cover bear a striking resemblance to ‘Also Sprach Zarathustra’ by Laibach?

1.5 / 5 –Christopher Owens ::: 06/09/18


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