CD, Ant Zen, 2010
Mono-Amine’s latest offering, “Do Not Bend”, is an endless barrage of complex rhythms twisted madly by distortion and triggered with breakneck speeds.
“Beyond the Status Quo” rips out of the gate with furious kicks and siren-like distortions, followed by the thick audio sludge of “If You Are Not Running You Will Not Make It”, a track which twists and turns with almost compressed-sounding drums and ramping frequencies with layers of garbled samples. “Democracy Is A Dying Giant” continues the pace with grinding static and 8-bit tonal hits, lightening the mood momentarily to almost playful levels amidst samples of government collapse. “Human Imitation” fails to hold my attention, even though it maintains tempo due to the fact it almost becomes a part two for the prior song, the only real noticeable change being a wavering ambience. “Slowburner” puts me back in the active listener chair with slaphappy beats and railgun hats, the rhythm pulling and contorting, while “Synthaesthesia” creeps with heavy percussion underlaid with seething, distorted drones and repeats a stop/go tactic to permanently rearrange your high end hearing. “Sloegha” starts subtly and quickly introduces wave after wave of concrete kicks and tight breakbeat-esque transitions. “Base Your Decisions On Information” had me smiling from the beginning: it opens with a vocal sample loop and sullen pads and quickly lets loose a pulsing rhythm that evolves and struggles to break free of the ever thickening distortion. “Combustion” pounds until sparks emerge from the gravel-throated samples and layers of synths lurching in and out of the song, while “Encountering No Resistance” lives up to its name, twisting effects-heavy percussion through the steady stream of distorted lows, rattling off drum and bass loops like fireworks – a song that runs rampant for over nine minutes and manages to remain fresh throughout, which is a real achievement.
Overall, this album is incredible but not an everyday listen. Recommended for serious fans of distortion and all things fast and aggressive.
— James Church