September 6, 2008

Mono - You Are There

Album: You Are There
Year: 2006
Genre:Post - Rock, Experimental

Another amazing release by one of the best post-rock bands! This isn't vastly different from their other stuff, but there is something particularly of note about this album: the excellent use of strings!Mono are a post-rock group from Tokyo, Japan. The songs, all of which are instrumental, are usually focused on layered guitar melodies. Strings and pianos are also prominently featured in some songs. Mono are known for their powerful live shows and their complex guitar work. Their first EP, titled “Hey, you” appeared in September, 2000. So far, they have released four full albums: “Under The Pipal Tree”, “One Step More And You Die”, “Walking cloud and deep red sky, Flag fluttered and the sun shined” and “You Are There”. They also have several other records, including a remix album, a collaborative split record with Pelican, an album collaborating with World’s end girlfriend and another EP, titled “Memorie dal Futuro”. For more information, visit their Official Website.
This band isn't heavy like Black Sabbath. They're heavy like Beethoven.
"‘Review’, the term is, in this instance, ridiculous. From a matter-of-fact point of view, every note here has been realised previously, not least of all by Mono themselves, yet with each passing second You Are There digs that bit deeper into your chest, into my chest, wriggling its way through sinewy muscle and brittle bone ‘til it’s such a part of you – me – that to offend it, to remove it, would surely result in an effect adverse to one’s health. It burrows slyly, as have its predecessors, so that come that first play you might even be of the opinion that what you’ve invested in is somehow clichéd; that it’s something that plays by the rules so well that it can’t possibly work on any emotional level. I thought that way for all of three minutes, one morning, on my way to the station. By the time I took my seat on the train I was so enraptured that the next hour passed by me in a second. I can’t recount to you specifics, what songs really had me over a knee, bending to receive. Wait, that’s all wrong, the imposing analogy; the idea that these songs force the listener into a submission. I’ll retract a few steps: Mono is the blueprint, you are the builder; you've the wheel but they've the pedals, and their ABC is all backwards as a turn approaches. Really, the destination to which these songs point is absolutely dependent on the listener’s own feelings at that single moment. Be they short – the delicate grace of ‘The Remains Of The Day’ – or anything but – opener ‘The Flames Beyond The Cold Mountain’ is one of some that breach ten minutes with such ease that no patience is ever tried – these songs will be the catalyst to some metaphysical journey. You’ll rethink that ultimatum you issued to a borderline-former friend once held so dear last week; perhaps, even, you’ll realise that the actions of another that left you hurt weren’t entirely without reason, that your interests are in balance with those of another. In short, you’ll think clearly, concisely, bereft of the clogged cloudscape that so often blinds opinion. Part those clouds, see actuality in its glory, hold my hand and I’ll shadow you every step of the way if need be; I’ll wander these corridors too, feeling with fingertips, gladly, smiling to no one but myself as vision becomes redundant. The dark’s there to explore: close your eyes and it’s no so intimidating. Close your eyes and the entire world gets that bit bigger…"


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