At first glance, Mono's stratospheric rock may seem like a dead ringer for any number of instrumental post-rock bands out there. But the Tokyo outfit delineates itself fairly well from its rivals, mainly the guitar dirges of Scotland's Mogwai and Explosions in the Sky's similar plume of spangled electric guitars. Much of Mono's merit lies in its music's ability to wax theatrical, culminating in a triumphant din of guitars, sometimes protracted strings and thundering bass. Founded by experimental guitar disciple Takaakira Goto, Mono reached its current four-member incarnation by 2001, the year first LP Under The Pipal Tree was released. Three more LPs followed, including 2006's swooning, practically operatic 2006 release You Are There. This month, instrumental-specialty label Temporary Residence Limited released the career-spanning rarities collection Gone. On tour, as here, Mono's heavy hymnals are consistently slotted between more hardcore and metal acts, guaranteeing a very diverse audience.
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