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Japanese orchestral masters announce twin albums for October release

Mono - The Last Dawn & Rays Of Darkness 2x CD

When one of the world’s most respected post-rock bands is about to release a new album, it’s worth taking notice of – so that Japanese masters Mono have announced that they will be releasing TWO albums next month through Pelagic Records.

Titled The Last Dawn and Rays Of Darkness, it appears the quartet are going for the traditional light/dark contrast between the two records. The press release says:

“Recorded simultaneously yet conceptually and creatively disparate, the two act as both opposing and complementary sides to a story. No strangers to narratives, the twin albums explore familiar themes for the band: Hope and hopelessness, love and loss, immense joy and unspeakable pain.”

The Last Dawn will be the lighter of the two, and promises work inspired by shoegaze – a genre enjoying something of a resurgence with Deafheaven‘s recent Sunbather a particular favourite among music fans – as well as minimalist film scores, and for the first time since 2003′s One Step More And You Die, the record will fit on a single piece of vinyl.

Yesterday The Quietus debuted a new song from The Last Dawn called “Where We Begin“. Have a listen to that to get a taste of what to expect:

Juxtaposing this, and taking steps into Mono’s distant past, Rays Of Darkness will feature absolutely zero orchestral instrumentation, and will be their blackest album ever: it “resembles a jet engine taking off inside a small, crowded auditorium”, we’re told. Crikey.

It will also feature contributions of seminal Japanese musician Tetsuya Fukagawa of Envy, who is no stranger to the genre – he guested on Mogwai‘s Mr. Beast in 2006, and Envy’s more recent material has been much more cinematic as well.

As well as the double CD package shown above, there’s some pretty sweet vinyl action going on too: check out the links here (CD) and here (LP) for more details.

The Last Dawn and Rays Of Darkness will be released on October 24th in Europe, October 27th in the UK, October 28th in North America and November 5th in Japan through Pelagic Records.