Within two years of forming in 1999, Mono came to the attention of noted American avant-garde musician John Zorn, who released the band's debut on his Tzadik label as part of the New Japan series that included Merzbow, Melt Banana and Ruins. Under the Pipal Tree (a reference to the place where Buddha attained enlightenment after 49 days of meditation) was an apt title for an album that combined trance-inducing atmospheres and rhythms with passages of exhilarating urgency. Rather than taking the usual post-rock route of building tension and releasing it in a predictable dynamic, Mono, like Mogwai and Godspeed You! Black Emperor, offers instrumental rock full of vivid emotional experiences. Mono's latest, For My Parents, is a further exploration of the band's modern classical influences.
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