KEN mode photographed by Scott Kinkade

KEN mode

Hometown: Winnipeg, MB (Canada)


The heartbeat of any modern metropolis, its anger, aggression and urgency echo through "Entrench". With full-length number five, KEN mode honour their noisier roots delving deep into fertile metallic Post-Hardcore severity, while offering their most creative and sonically diverse album yet. KEN mode was formed in 1999 by Canadian Royal Conservatory of Music trained musicians Jesse Matthewson and brother Shane Matthewson who were then joined by Darryl Laxdal on bass. Their band name was based on a quote of Henry Rollins and the acronym stands for "Kill Everyone Now". After releasing several demos during the next four years, their debut album "Mongrel" (2003) created a strong buzz that opened doors for touring and shows with THE END, MASTODON, BURNT BY THE SUN, PELICAN and THE DREAM IS DEAD among others. Follow-up "Reprisal" (2006) confirmed KEN mode as a new powerhouse of their genre. Laxdal parted ways with the band and was first replaced by Drew Johnston (ELECTRO QUARTERSTAFF) and later Jahmeel Russell (HIDE YOUR DAUGHTERS), who recorded third album "Mennonite" (2008) with them. This release saw the band embark on a European tour with Welsh rockers TAINT, for which Chad Tremblay had meanwhile taken over bass duties. KEN mode's next album "Venerable" (2011) was produced by Kurt Ballou of Converge and the trio hit the road again with GAZA, BURIED INSIDE and later A LIFE ONCE LOST among others as well as returning to Europe with then label-mates KYLESA and CIRCLE TAKES THE SQUARE. Critical acclaim had gained a level that witnessed "Venerable" winning the inaugural Heavy Metal/Hard Music Album of the Year Juno Award in Canada and a nomination for Rock Album of the Year by the Western Canadian Music Awards. KEN mode were ready for the next big step in their career and recorded and mixed "Entrench" with Matt Bayles (MASTODON, ISIS, BOTCH). Get ready for a massive punch in your face from KEN mode and "Entrench"!


KEN Mode Success

KEN Mode

Success (2015)

Season of Mist

Russian Circles / KEN mode / Inter Arma live in Cambridge

Russian Circles / KEN mode / Inter Arma

live in Cambridge (2014)

live show

Current Releases

Ken ModeSuccess

Ken Mode


June 16, 2015

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Media: KEN Mode: "Success"
KEN Mode have released another new song. It's called "Success." The new record is titled Success and is due out June 16, 2015. You can hear the new tune below. You can click Read…
May 20, 2015
Videos: KEN Mode: "Blessed"
Ken Mode have released a video for their song "Blessed." The track is off the upcoming Success album due out June 16, 2015 via Season of Mist.…
March 31, 2015
Videos: KEN Mode: "The Promises of God"
Punknews is happy to premiere the video for "The Promises of God" by Canada's KEN Mode. The song appeared on last year's Entrench. You can click Read More for the video and upcoming tour…
July 28, 2014
Tours: Russian Circles / Ken Mode
Russian Circles have announced the first batch of 2014 tour dates. They will be joined by Ken Mode for all the dates and separate legs with Inter Arma and…
December 17, 2013
Videos: KEN Mode: "Romeo Must Never Know"
Winnipeg, MB hardcore outfit KEN Mode have released a video for "Romeo Must Never Know." It's from their 2013 LP for Season of Mist,…
November 21, 2013
Videos: Ken Mode featured in Forbes
Canadian hardcore outfit KEN Mode is featured in a new article for Forbes magazine. The article talks about the benefits of having business-related educations for musicians in…
October 04, 2013
Videos: Ken Mode: "Secret Vasectomy"
Canada's Ken Mode have posted their video for "Secret Vasectomy" from their 2013 Season of Mist debut, Entrench. It's probably fine for work, but might be troubling if you're afraid of…
July 29, 2013
Tours: Ken Mode / Unkind
Ken Mode have announced a European tour for September and October with support coming from Relapse Records' Unkind. You can click Read More for the…
July 19, 2013
Tours: Canada Day Mixtape
In honor of Canada Day - which is today - we've put together a little 31-song playlist featuring a number of different Canadian punk, hardcore, metal and indie bands that represent just some of the Canadian bands we cover on the site. The goal wasn't to create some sort of comprehensive cross-section of Canadian…
July 01, 2013
Tours: Ken Mode / Inter Arma / Rosetta
This summer, Canada's Ken Mode will be heading out on a North American headlining tour. The Juno-winning hardcore band will have one leg supported by Inter Arma and a second with Rosetta.…
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