Kronen perform ‘Salient Life’

Kronen perform “Salient Life” at Second Story Garage in Boulder.

Kronen is a Boulder rock band. Let’s start there.

A lot of things make them stand out, though, things that together amount to what you could call “the Kronen way.” They experiment with unusual chord progressions, rhythms and arrangements. Drummer Kato Kronen plays on an electronic kit. They spell their name with an upside “r” when font options allow. Their page at is as much about selling cool clothes as cool music. And they think a lot — we mean a lot — about the creation and presentation of their music.

Kronen is not just a rock band. It’s a branded enterprise.

Band leader Caleb Kronen — Kato’s brother — is a researcher for the University of Colorado’s Hearing Research Laboratory and studies hearing-aid sound processing and acoustics. When he puts together music, his thinking goes beyond what chords and notes to play. He considers exactly what’s going in the air and the listener’s ear. He’s got one up on you — he knows what you’re hearing.

The band is meticulous about the performance side of their music, too. Every artist at the Garage is invited to leave us a keepsake, and Kronen gave us a leather-bound journal that includes performance notes.There’s even a page devoted to proper posture. Another page contains a performance pep talk.

But the set doesn’t come off as calculated. It’s not a physics lesson. In the end, it sounds like rock music, and local audiences are responding. In January the band sold out the Fox Theatre. We were grateful that Kronen came in and treated us to intimate performances of “Salient Life” and “Artfully Answered” in the Garage, and sat down for an interview with Quentin.

What they brought us: A leather-bound journal full of lyrics and band notes.

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