On Success, the latest long-player from Winnipeg noise-rock trio KEN Mode, the band continues to stake out territory far outside the mainstream, an us-against-the-world mentality that surfaces most cleanly on "The Owl…," where singer/guitarist Jesse Matthewson grumbles about "too many years … spent caring much too much about an arbitrary code."

On Success, the latest long-player from Winnipeg noise-rock trio KEN Mode, the band continues to stake out territory far outside the mainstream, an us-against-the-world mentality that surfaces most cleanly on "The Owl…," where singer/guitarist Jesse Matthewson grumbles about "too many years … spent caring much too much about an arbitrary code."

"As cliché as it is, we've always been marching to the beat of our own drums," said Matthewson, who joins his brother, drummer Shane Matthewson, and bassist Skot Hamilton for a concert at Ace of Cups on Saturday, June 20. "Quite frankly, to play music that is appealing to a mass audience you kind of have to relate to a mass audience, and I don't feel we've ever as people been able to do that. It doesn't surprise me that we can't get that broader appeal because I don't understand that type of person. I'm making music for weirdos that don't fit in, and I always will be making music for weirdos that don't fit in."

In recent years, Matthewson, who left his job as an accountant in 2011 to pursue music full-time, has been forced to balance this independent streak with harsher economic realities. As he asks on "Management Control," "Where does money come from?"

"It's been an interesting shift, particularly having to care about the music industry when we historically didn't," the singer said. "You have to give a shit about people purchasing your media and people caring about the things you create, which in itself is a weird thing to wrap your head around.

"I think maybe part of the problem is we have never cared about what people think. It's a revolving thing even on this record. The fact anyone is even paying attention right now we still find amusing. We've been a band for nearly 16 years now, and for at least the first 12 years of this band's existence nobody gave a crap. We're always waiting for that other shoe to drop and everyone to stop paying attention."

According to Matthewson, KEN Mode has managed to stay this perceived execution through some combination of will, endurance and volume, turning out barbed, vitriolic tunes designed to cut through "the death that exists in routine things," as Don DeLillo described it in his novel "White Noise."

"I think people largely pay attention to us because we refuse to stay quiet. There's so much noise in all facets of life right now, so memorability is kind of a key," Matthewson said. "We have this running commentary on the impact of our band: Whether good or bad, we want it to be memorable. Being exposed to all this mundane, day-to-day shit, I just want something that sticks in your craw."

Success, captured to analog tape alongside recording engineer Steve Albini (Nirvana, The Jesus Lizard), manages this by having the trio wield its music like a blunt instrument - "This stubborn battering ram of perpetual loss," as Matthewson terms it on the sneering, sarcastic "Blessed" - constructing songs around a relentless churn of caveman drums, demented vocals and a cavalcade of riffs that mimic everything from rumbling garbage trucks to industrial power tools.

To alleviate some of this tension, the band keeps things relatively streamlined, and the entire album clocks in well under 40 minutes.

"I hate to think this way, but given the nature of the type of music we play I do think we're a little too intense of a band to be putting out 50-minute records," said Matthewson, who was born into a family of accountants - both of his parents are chartered accountants, as is his younger brother Shane - and started playing electric guitar at 12 years old after becoming infatuated with Nirvana's In Utero ("Something just clicked on that screaming chorus of 'Scentless Apprentice' and I was never the same," he said). "Even fans of this music don't want to listen to that much aggression. You get in, you mess them up and then you get out."

For all of its unrelenting sonic brutality and engrained dark humor (the Matthewson brothers' default setting might be "sarcastic"), the crew's latest doesn't hesitate to linger on larger, more thought-provoking questions, and throughout the bandmates wrestle with heady concepts like the definition of success, the responsibilities tied to privilege and, on "Dead Actors," the duality of conscious existence.

"What was the last thing you've done that mattered?" Matthewson growls at the song's outset.

"It's a tough [question] because one could argue that nothing that any of us could do matters in the grand scheme of things … yet at the same time everything you do that affects those around you means the world," Matthewson said. "I could argue that I'd hope this album matters. And yet at the same time I know it doesn't."