So this weekend we had a toss up between the Cramps live, current Dallas hyped darlings of the moment Polyphonic Spree and Japan's Mono. Figured the Cramps will always come back around, I'm not a big Polyphonic Spree fan, THOUGH I do think their debut LP is pretty solid in an "I wanna be big band version of the Flaming Lips or Mercury Rev" sort of way, and the whole hippie cult angle is cute. There are worse crimes ya know? Like wanting to be the Strokes. Speaking of plagiarist tendencies, quite a few bands under the post and drone rock banner seem hopelessly enamored of Mogwai's gently spiraling guitar crescendos, which in turn builds on Sonic Youth and Bark Psychosis arty types.
The young and pretty quartet Mono definitely went to the school of Mogwai, Godspeed You Black Emperor, etc, and graduated with honors. Their studied combination of delicate melodies and ear-splitting noise delivered with quiet/loud dynamics is as predictable as the sunrise, and as torrential as a hurricane. Live I was truly knocked out with the same sort of brute force. Almost every song builds from a lazy bit of minimal trance guitar to a dissonant rush of howling feedback and bottom end sludge-riffing, like a cross between shimmery Windy and Carl and earthshaking Black Sabbath. But the constant orchestration and overall predictability of their set can wear thin over time. Thankfully they called it quits before that point ever came. Fly Pan Am was set to be on the same bill, but cancelled. Curious if it has something to do with the last time GYBE came through this part of the country they were all detained for national security purposes in Oklahoma the day after their Ft. Worth show.