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Posted: November 2nd, 2003, by Ollie

on friday we dressed up as zombies and went to see a band. a fairly standard friday night you may be thinking, but thankfully we saw japanese band mono and they were first fucking class. a few years ago i got completely sick of watching bands of skinny kids who sound like mogwai; there was too damn many of them and they were never very good. this is largely what i was expecting of mono, but after only a few minutes of their set they showed me that they’d done their homework and they meant business. there’s really no escaping the fact that they just sound like mogwai did 5 or 6 years ago: gentle gliding guitar textures that sway and build until it’s very loud, or occasionally switching from very quiet to very loud on a sixpence. the thing that sets them apart from the legions of second rate post-rock copycats is that they do it very very well indeed, the best i’ve heard anyone do it since young team, the holy grail itself came out and lodged itself firmly in my skull. when they were quiet it was all very nice and pretty and 1998 and when it was loud it was “fucking hell, that’s really very loud indeed and i wasn’t expecting that and SHIT it just got louder, well surely they can’t get… JESUS! there they go”. they reminded me why i ever liked this stuff in the first place, at a time when anything that sounds remotely like mogwai sends me to sleep within 30 seconds. the couple of times they went from quiet twiddley bits to SHREDDING THE PLACE TO SHIT i seriously began to wonder if they weren’t better than mogwai ever were, but that was probably the beer talking.

for those who haven’t heard of this band (most of you i’m sure) they’re a tokyo quartet who have albums out on tzadik and arena rock, and will probably be very huge if the nme ever decides to start writing about music again.

lastly, in an effort to get a photo into every blog, here is the amazing pumpkin kim carved.


Ollie lives in Cambridge and puts on gigs as part of Crushing Death and Grief.


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