Nowhere Now Here

01 God Bless
02 After You Comes the Flood
03 Breathe
04 Nowhere, Now Here
05 Far and Further
06 Sorrow
07 Parting
08 Meet Us Where the Night Ends
09 Funeral Song
10 Vanishing, Vanishing Maybe

Takaakira 'Taka' Goto - Guitar
Tamaki - Bass, Piano, Synth, Vocals
Yoda - Guitar
Dahm - Drums

Under the Pipal Tree (2001)
One Step More and You Die (2002)
Walking Cloud and Deep Red Sky, Flag Fluttered and the Sun Shined (2004)
You Are There (2006)
Hymn to the Immortal Wind (2009)
For My Parents (2012)

The Last Dawn (2014)
Rays of Darkness (2014)
Requiem For Hell (2016)

Max Crawford - Conductor
Susan Voelz - Violin
Inger Petersen Carle - Violin
Andra Kulans - Violin
Vannia Phillips - Violin
Stacia Spencer - Violin
Jennifer Dunne - Violin
Alison Chesley - Cello
Nora Barton - Cello
Melissa Bach - Cello
Anna Steinhoff - Cello
Chad McCullough - Trumpets
Gerald Bailey - Trumpets

Ahmed Emad Eldin

Released 2019-01-25
Reviewed 2019-01-08


pelagic records

Mono from Japan return and they do that to celebrate twenty years which coincides with ten albums. They call this tenth album Nowhere Now Here, which is a clever title. And it is an album that features vocals for the first time; their bassist Tamaki does the vocals on the track Breathe. Another indication that this band isn’t standing still, they once started as most instrumental rockers do with guitar, bass and drums and then it has evolved so that they have orchestras and everything, up to thirty instruments. So I guess you can say that their complexity has been increased tenfold and now even more with a touch of vocals, but you can probably also say that they are keen explorers of the world of music. When I explored their music back in 2014 when they released two albums at the same time, I reviewed them as one; I thought that they could have shown a bit more dynamics but that they were quite interesting.

On that subject I think about the same now, they deliver something fairly fresh and original but I still would want more dynamics. I think they are a bit on the quiet side and a bit more power and grandeur wouldn’t hurt. The music itself is instrumental rock, a touch on the storytelling and atmospheric side, almost like a film score I guess. Pretty good depth and decent variation are also things I notice; the vocals are good as well. I think one point to make is that the album is too long, the variation and depth it has isn’t quite enough and add to that the sense that the album is a bit too quiet and you have the weaker points I can think about when listening to this album.

Not fantastic then, but still a good album, quite enjoyable. I like the atmospheres it offers, and the production is really strong to bring out these atmospheres. Quite a vital album for an old band and they celebrate 20 in a pretty good way I think. Fans of the instrumental rock genre will also be a lot more impressed with this than I am and Mono’s fans will probably be very impressed by their heroes. I think they have put together a strong effort that is better than last time I heard them.

Overall I guess I can be considered relatively impressed by these guys, they have made a strong tenth album and if they keep doing it like this they will probably be around for another twenty years. Nowhere Now Here is almost as clever as the title and if you are a fan of the band you should not miss it as Mono has put together another really solid effort. I guess congratulations are in order, twenty years and ten album has to be considered quite impressive.





Label: Temporary Residence Ltd./Pelagic Records
Three similar bands:
Snailking/Wang Wen/Mogwai
Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

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