the story of “mono” or how i found myself in tears on the bus this morning

in 1998 or so i was working at a college radio station in cleveland, wruw.
it was a ton of fun and i found a million new bands that i fell in love with every week.

now i am old. but that is a different story.

john zorn is da best.
when our radio station started recieving records from his label, Tzadik, I was nerdily excited. so for the next few years, my show was jam packed with Tzadik artists like Ruins, Merzbow, Ikue Mori, Melt Banana, etc etc. Then one day, I found the best record, Mono’s Under the Pipal Tree a, which came out in 2001.

From that point on I was obsessed with this dynamic, quasi-classical style of epic rock… and those motherfuckers just got better with each record. If you need convincing, lay down in a comfortable spot and listen to You are Here (2006) super loud. yes, it is loud, and no, don’t turn the loud parts down, fucker.

but that mono record came out a few weeks before i met my ex. we ended up dating for almost 8 years. the first few weeks of our relationship was intense passion. it was essentially Under the Pipal Tree realized in real life.

and now, this morning, the album’s second track appeared on my shuffled player on the way to work, and i was suddenly taken back to December 2001. i wasn’t on a shitty bus crammed into a seat between a couple long island fatties. i was lying on my bed in cleveland with her resting in my arms. The scent of her hair was in my nostrils and breathed in the memory so strongly that i could feel her breath on my chest and hear her shallow breathing.

for only a moment, i was happy again. i was home.

but i opened my eyes and was crushed by reality. the song was over. there was no girl, no bed, no searing passion, no beautiful melody. it had all been a dream.

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