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Monday, 21 November 2016

Another Point Of View: Mono & Alcest (Live Review By Rich)

Mono, Alcest & Sinistro, The Globe, Cardiff

A highly anticipated evening of atmospheric music hit The Globe as Alcest & Mono brought their co-headlining tour to the Welsh capital.

There was no support act advertised on the poster for this show so it was a pleasant surprise when I arrived at The Globe to find a band on stage that was neither Alcest or Mono. Kicking off the proceedings were Portugeuse band Sinistro (6). Sinistro played a mix of doom/sludge metal and post-rock combining dreamy atmospheric passages with dense pulverising riffs. The band gave a confident performance but failed to exude much energy or stage presence which also resulted in a half-hearted response from the audience.

Next up were for me the main attraction of the evening the mighty Alcest (10).  They also appeared to me the main attraction for the majority of the audience as they came onstage to rapturous applause and cheers. Alcest's blend of atmospheric black metal, post-rock, shoegaze and dream pop was executed perfectly with songs from the newest release Kodama sitting comfortably alongside older songs such as Autre Temps and Écailles de lune Part 1 and receiving a highly positive response from the audience, as the set progressed it was the absolutely beautiful performance of Délivrance brought it to a stunning close.

The final band of the evening were Japanese post-rock masters Mono (6).  The audience had thinned out very slightly by the time Mono hit the stage but those that remained responded very enthusiastically to the performance. Mono played an enjoyable if rather repetitive set. All songs followed the same pattern of a soft and quiet intro which slowly built up and gathered steam, kept building in intensity before reaching a deafening crescendo and a very abrupt end. After several songs following this same pattern I unfortunately found my interest waning. Sadly due to an extremely early start the next day I had to leave the show early but what I managed to see of Mono's set was enjoyable, just not very enthralling.

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