After the 2012 album For My Parents Mono seemed to be playing on the cruise control. Last month they came back with the two (!) new albums Rays of Darkness & The Last Dawn where the Japanese quartet found the spirit again. On a cold December night the small stage of Patronaat is completely packed for a long set of the best Post-Rock available on this goddamn planet.
First there is Helen Money. A woman on Cello with a lot of effect pedals around her. You might expect a writing of neo-classical music here and I expected that too. Instead she showed us an Avant-garde palette with the emphasis on the dark and doomy side of her latest album Arriving Angels. When I step into the venue I see her plucking on the Cello while it seems the introduction of a Melvins song. Good start! Next up the view is connecting with the music; we hear cello sounds as we are used to it until she hits a pedal and pounding metal drum parts are kicking in. What a surprise and it fits totally the bleak atmosphere on this cold night
The unhappy look of Helen Money is part of the dark n’ doomy Avant-garde setting. Her set is short and with the crowd still coming in its noisy too to completely absorb in her set. Nevertheless she presented her music in a proper way so everyone is eager to see her again next time.
Mono is hailed as the kings of the night and is starting directly with the new song ‘Recoil, Ignite’ from the last album Rays of Darkness and they are truly deserving the king’s crown. The sound is full in your face with also the atmosphere adding small details so nothing can go wrong. As used with Japanese musicians they play their music with full passion and dedication. It’s also great to see how bassist Tamaki stylistically is moving in her black dress on the dreamy Post-Rock.
The set evolves as the perfect soundtrack of the best movie you can imagine. Dreaming away at a show never has been so easy. With the third song starting on keyboards we have a fine moment to catch a breath. The song ends with keyboards too, seeing one guitar player focused on doing air keyboards is a fine moment to enjoy. The Japanese are the perfect example to come up with the perfect melody in the sea of melancholy and it keeps going on and on. The old song ‘Halcyon (Beautiful Days)’ in that manner is an absolute highlight of the set. However new work has the same quality standard.
Mono is mostly operating in a dramatically way of the Post-Rock genre, they also bring positive and hopeful tones to give you that free as bird feeling if you are flying through the air. This is actually happing In the one and a half hour set and I think that’s also one of Mono’s goals. At the end of the set with ‘Everlasting Light’ they have reached that goal to the maximum. With a smile and a happy feeling everyone leave into the cold night. Yes, Mono did it again!
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