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Under the Pipal Tree

Mono Audio CD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 20.32 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Washed out Psychedelia and Luscious Kitten Drip Jan. 28 2002
Format:Audio CD
First of all, a good deal of the praise for Mono's debut (?) effort, Under the Pipal Tree, should go to Tzadik label owner John Zorn. I don't have any idea how involved he is as a producer, but I do know that the packaging, liner notes, art and information provided for all the recordings Tzadik puts out are first-rate. Zorn also provides the great social service of supporting young and undervalued experimental musicians and making their voices heard.
That said, Under the Pipal Tree is an arcing, melancholy haunting of an album. Their Tzadik press write-up names artistic influences Sonic Youth, John Fahey and the Grateful Dead. My overall impression of the record was definitely akin to hearing Sonic Youth at their most psychedelic. But when Sonic Youth decides to hit that brick wall, Mono softens the edges, blurs the lines. The result is just as emotionally engaging, but instead of youthful catharsis, it is more like artful wilting in oblivion.
There is evidence of technical talent that I don't immediately equate with Sonic Youth: check out the crazy time changes on 'Of Beach.' Also, that track's extreme slowness suggests the otherwordly noir of late guitarist John Fahey's work, from his spaced-out acoustic dirges to his later experiments with electric tonality. The entire album's psychedelia definitely suggests some sort of mutation of those Dead-like qualities of transcendent structure and epiphanies. It is updated, however, to a newer, 2002 socially-aware (i.e. not primarily drug-based) transcendent quality. The hopeful whispers through bleak delivery" technique of songs like 'L''America'are more reminiscent of postmodern idealists Godspeed You Black Emperor and spin-off band A Silver Mt. Zion than, say, 'China Cat Sunflower.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting instrumental experience Nov. 3 2003
By T. Wolf
Format:Audio CD
I bought this CD by mistake (I was searching for some other CDs of MONO that made "Formica Blues"). But it was a good mistake. The only problem I have is the changin loudness (which someone might enjoy). Sometimes I can't even hear the instruments and the next minute it gets loud... It is not the CD's fault, it coresponds with the music... But other than that it is amazing mixture of instrumental experience...
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4.0 out of 5 stars I'll keep this brief June 25 2002
Format:Audio CD
Great record. Fans of Mogwai will undoubtedly hear the similarities, but it's hardly derivative. Mono reminds me much more of Explosions In The Sky, whose cd "Those Who tell The Truth Shall Die, Those Who Tell The Truth Shall Live Forever" is equally remarkable. Although "Under the Pipal Tree" lacks the orchestral touches of GYBE or ASMZ, it is a similarly affecting cd, and one that fans of instrumental rock should find an extremely rewarding listen.
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5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant beautiful instrumentals June 19 2002
Format:Audio CD
i guess the best way to describe this music is to say it sounds like mogwai, but it reaches heights of beauty that mogwai rarely achieve. to put it simply, mono have with a single album become everything that mogwai ever wanted to be. comparisons to the likes of godspeed, you black emperor! and a silver mt. zion are right on. many songs, even those over 12 minutes lost, consist of a single repeated phrase, building in complexity and power into a climactic flurry of notes. this is minimalism at its finest.
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