Mono You Are There

Post-rock is such a fickle sub-genre. Everyone seems to take that quiet-loud template as an invitation to grab your guitars, make a racket, and then counterpoint them with some strumming. And do it for, at least, ten minutes. When it’s done badly, it’s boring and uninspiring, but when it’s done well, and with respect, post-rock can still knock those pre-conceived notions of music out of your head. Japan’s Mono have grown their expansive and primal version of post-rock steadily over the past while, with it reaching capacity on their last album. Amazingly, though, Mono are still expanding their uncanny knack in crafting the perfect epic. Look to "Yearning,” which is the ultimate slow build, adding layer upon layer of instruments and noise until it just explodes around the seven-minute mark and doesn’t let up. Beyond the monster noise, Mono are also masterful at the flipside, as "The Remains of the Day” is striking with its Satie-esque simplicity. Fuck clichés, this is serious music. It is post-rock, performed by those who love it and believe in why it drew people to it in the first place. Essential, really. (Temporary Residence)