If you have aspirations of starting a garage band, playing with reckless abandon is job number one. However, job number two is not getting the cops called on you for violating your local noise ordinance. But, most importantly, job number three is about bucking the system by playing as loud and as mad you want. KLEN, a rock quartet hailing from Penryn, Cornwall in the United Kingdom, have shown up on the block with three guitarists and a drummer in tow that are ready to rattle some windows and nerves with their debut single, “Down The Pen.”
KLEN are self-described as “three guitarists, no bass, and a drummer pummeling from a standing position.” To clarify, they claim there’s “no real bass” with the added explainer that even that is “up to interpretation.” What is not up for debate is the sheer ferocity by which they attack in unbridled, garage rock formation. Beyond the apparent intensity, there are small modulations in their sound that undulate slight, psychedelic waves through their fury. In addition, these oscillations imitate a surf rock tempo that adds to the rapid flow. Altogether, it molds to form a maniacal, punkish edge.
Perhaps by design, the lyrics are not all evident amongst the frenzy. Aside from “outside my window” and shouts of “down the pen,” there isn’t much else that’s easily deciphered. As a result, it all fits perfectly with the entire frenetic, scatter shot manner that KLEN strives to portray. If you do want to read between the lines, “pen” is likely short for the band’s home of Penryn. Beyond that, everything else is up for interpretation—kind of like how KLEN, the band is composed.
If you want to boil down what KLEN is all about, it’s purposeful chaos. There’s a method to the madness that, while throwing you off kilter, comes back to the aforementioned tenets of garage rock. Casting aside convention, KLEN’s debut is effectively loud and magnificently messy.
Written by Travis Boyer