A MONO record strives for perfection. Every note is in the right place and every sound is applied to the canvas layered expertly and invoking a rush of varied emotions. Hymn to the Immortal Wind was released in 2009 and is MONO’s fifth studio album. In addition to the band, nearly a dozen orchestra musicians contribute to this record. Every sound imaginable is included and there is some innovation/evolution resulting in some reverse, atypical cinematic effects. In this album you’ll be lightly caressed, beaten down, and then resuscitated by fair-haired angels.
The Last Dawn (released 2014) is a stunning work of art and when I introduce Post-Rock to someone, this Mono LP will be included. It’s a glorious escape to a shining landscape…and I can’t find the right words to describe how beautiful it is. From first track to last I was captivated by the intricate weaving of sonic textures into a perfectly unified sound.
Gone is a sample collection of tracks from Mono’s EP catalog. The tracks pull one through the band’s beginning of experimentation with far out synth electronica to the more refined sound that evolved midway through band’s existence. EP’s are usually a few early release tracks from an upcoming album and the selection of “choice” cuts mark this as a best of, best of album from early Mono. This track is one of the earlier Mono compositions.
Under the Pipal Tree, released in 2001 is Mono’s first full length album. This Post-Rock effort is filled with lush strings and percussion, often interlaced with bold, distortion filled electric guitar. It’s not hard to assign a “Zen like” label to this music, as the tracks seem to meander down a slow lazy river filled with occasional eddies and waterfalls. The LP is a perfect mix of symphonic strings and rock guitar feedback.
Palmless Prayer/Mass Murder Refrain Is a collaborative effort from two distinguished Post-Rock entities. The album invokes, almost, a debilitating sadness. Filled with strings and haunting voices, it is best to listen to in the dark…enveloped in your despair. I thought about including the whole LP as the cathartic release from the depths of your darkness is best achieved in its entirety, but settled on Part III instead.
“A grief without a pang, void, dark and drear,
A drowsy, stifled, unimpassioned grief,
Which finds no natural outlet or relief,
In word, or sigh, or tear.”
― Samuel Taylor Coleridge
“Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.”