Onnomon - NoMonno


Pound Shop Alex Petridis
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what in tintern abbey are you talking about?

No Monno
Soular (USA)

An utterly smashing surprise this one – I don’t know what I was expecting, I’m not even sure I was expecting anything, but I’ve never heard anything quite like this. USA trance is often disjointed, a symptom maybe of the utter satellite nature of a few ‘heads making the music in various places around the country. Every American doofer I’ve ever met is spot on and a thoroughly nice bloke/blokette, and on the strength of that plus the better parts of their music, the conditions all point to a highly creative, if disparate, scene. Which ties in with this CD quite nicely: Onnomon (aka Dean Zygoris) has an incredibly individual and confidently-defined style, never falling into the clichés and subroutines that plague a lot of the rest of the world. Right from the opening bars of Virtual God, with the lo-fi and deep-set groove bubbling like lysergic soup with the gas on too high, you know you’re in for a treat. Melodies are expertly delivered, neither crashing in too quickly nor taking too long to mature. There are suggestions of darkness, but again this is never carried too deeply so that it overtakes the dreamy, fluid atmosphere of the tracks on offer. The epic Dream Maker is every bit as staggering as Blue Planet Corporation in his heyday, and the Homeric twelve-plus minutes of We Found is a blinding lesson in eeking out musical elements and creating a real journey within a track. Incognito shows off a sublime science-fiction-functionality that’s a delight to behold, and final track Afterthought is a sonic paella of ideas, vibes and changes that’s bursting with ideas. At its best, No Monno operates like a sort of home-listening journey through tunes that combine progressive elements with dark, twisted mushroom-madness outdoor trance, in much the same way that the initial crop of neo-fullon releases morphed fullon vegetables in a progressive gravy. At times you’re left wishing the kick would be a bit harder to allow for a more direct dancefloor experience, and it’s difficult to think of tunes that would sit either side of these in all but the most flamboyant DJ sets. Yet despite this, Onnomon has developed a unique style which displays that there’s still most definitely – and contrary to what you may have heard – innovation left in this old psytrance beast yet.