- Audio CD (20 November 2001)
- Language: English, English, English
- Number of Discs: 1
- Format: CD, Import
- Label: TZADIK RECORDS
- ASIN: B00005RFK8
- Other Editions: Vinyl
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
Under the Pipal Tree CD, Import
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Mono is a young instrumental band from Tokyo combining elements of minimalism, psychedelia and trance rock to create a distinctive and powerful new sound via John Fahey, Sonic Youth and the Grateful Dead. Austere and intense; their music is simple, beautiful and incredibly direct. Sheets of sound, lyricism, wailing guitars and pounding rhythms evolve slowly, morphing into a ritual of noise and ecstasy. A remarkable debut from this exciting new Japanese band.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
It's rather irrelevant to go through the album by tracks, although necessary to develop just what exactly the album sounds like, so I will attempt to find a happy medium. For starters, this is climatic music, though subtle. All seems to have been carefully manipulated; Mono avoids climaxes that are forced resulting in extremely natural, yet extremely chaotic, progressions within the songs. Every song is minimal, and thankfully so; a dam within this album's flow would ruin it, no doubt. The minimalism adds power and depth ... in the beginning the melody will grab your heart and at the end it will tear it out. Beautiful? Indeed.
With a couple of guitars, a bass, a kit and some cello thrown in for good measure, Mono have created a work that is valiant, beautiful and ultimately glorious. You'll find no jazzed-up productions here; simply raw music with its heart upon its sleeve, to grab yours along for the ride. Buy this record as soon as you can.
The next four songs go over just fine, but they all pale in comparison to the Album's real standouts: 'Error #9,' and 'L'america.' 'Error #9' in particular is simply gorgeous. The way the introduction is played almost sounds like heavenly angels floating through a mist, and the guitar enters with a stunning repetitive melody. The guitars buildup, with Mono using their effects pedals to produce just the right sound, and then it all dies down, returning to the heavenly ambience of the beginning. Then all of a sudden, the guitar melody returns as a beckon of hope, and all of the sudden, everything crashes into a powerful guitar symphony, completely overwhelming the listener. Finally, after a few minutes, the magestic guitars trail off and the listener is left with the beginning melody, then that ends, and all is left is the ambience, trailing off into oblivion.
'Error #9' is followed by 'L'America,' which quiet and comtemplative. In a sense, it's almost a refleciton of the previous song, chilling out the listener from the previous numbers majestic heights. It's a solid number, and in the same vein of 'Sabbath,' off of their next album.
Overall, this is an excellent debut album, and is definitely worth the price of admission for Error #9 alone, and it demonstrates that even at this early point in their career, Mono is capable of expressing tremendous emotion in their music, demonstrating further that music is really a form of art.