photos by Francesca De Franceschi Manzoni
“To The Ones” is the latest single from THE MON, the solo project of Ufomammut bassist/vocalist Urlo. Delivered through an animated video, the latest preview of the project’s impending second album Eye features guests Colin H. Van Eeckhout of Amenra and Sarah Pendleton of The Otolith.
In comparison to its predecessor, Doppelleben, THE MON’s Eye LP is more introspective and denser, the new record built around electronic soundscapes and acoustic atmospheres that take you on a sonic journey where the songs flow nonstop into one another. While Urlo performs the entire musical foundation of the album, he is joined by a cast of special guests, with vocal/lyrical contributions from Steve Von Till (Neurosis), Colin H. Van Eeckhout (Amenra), and Francesca De Franceschi Manzoni, as well as violins from Sarah Pendleton (Subrosa, The Otolith), and guitars from David W (White Hills).
Eye was written, performed, produced, recorded, mixed, and mastered by Urlo at The Howl, Italy, and the artwork completed by the Malleus Rock Art Lab collective. While choosing a singular genre for THE MON’s Eye is surely a difficult challenge, one could classify the album as heavy dark folk electronic.
The new single “To The Ones” features lyrics and vocals from Van Eeckhout and violin from Pendleton, and is delivered through a captivating animated/art video created by Malleus.
Urlo reveals, “I have known Colin for many years. I have always appreciated his approach to art, and I consider him a wonderful person, a complete artist and yet down to earth. I’m so happy that he’s a part of my record, once again, after he sang and wrote the lyrics for one of the two versions of the song in the EP My Rotten Heart/Into Nothing. When I first heard the new version of ‘To The Ones’ with its vocal track and lyrics, I was thrilled, because the song had become something else, a little gem.
“And when Sarah Pendleton, who I’ve always admired for her fiddle textures from Subrosa onward, sent me her part for this tune, I felt really lucky. The overall atmosphere of the song completely changed; the violin has created a fundamental texture.
“Colin and Sarah have given me a great gift with their talent. And I think they will also give it to everyone who will listen to ‘To The Ones.’”
Van Eeckhout offers, “I met Urlo in the summer of 2011; I will never forget it. Both our bands had just embarked on a tour with Neurosis, right after we all got signed to Neurot Recordings. There was never a sense of competition; immediately a sense of camaraderie was installed. and it stayed that way throughout the years. Every year we popped into each other at festivals worldwide. I’ve always had a heartfelt revisiting of our friendship. We knew where we came from and were grateful for where we stood then.
“When Urlo asked me to be a guest on his next THE MON album, I felt that mutual friendship, that mutual respect. It is a true honor for me to be a part of his next artistic endeavor and weave a little of myself into that album. The crown on our friendship.”
Pendleton adds, “I had been an avid fan of Urlo’s work in Ufomammut for years and had been fortunate enough to get to know him personally through performing shows together. So, when he asked me to contribute to THE MON’s album, I was honored and giddy, like a kid. I loved getting to see this other musical side to him, and I felt an immediate connection to the songs. Writing violin parts for these songs was a bit like wandering through a faerie tale or an alien landscape. I can’t wait for listeners to wander through it with us.”
Watch THE MON’s “To The Ones” video at THIS LOCATION.
Supernatural Cat will release Eye on limited 12” Blue and Red vinyl variants, digipak CD, and all digital services on May 26th. Find preorders now at the label webshop HERE and Bandcamp HERE, and see the previously issued videos for “Where” HERE and “Confession” HERE.
THE MON is the solo project of Urlo, who is most widely known as the lead vocalist, bassist, synth player and one of the founding members of the heavy psych Italian band Ufomammut. He is also one of the three minds behind the poster art trio Malleus Rock Art Lab, and one of the operators of Supernatural Cat Records. The aim of THE MON is to reach the boundaries of a spiritual soundscape in which the music becomes purification and atonement, a way to bring out the world that is inside the human soul. Where Ufomammut creates mind-expanding, heavy psychedelic, almost other-dimensional sounds, THE MON is far more intimate, looking inward, as Urlo explores and examines his innermost thoughts through music. THE MON builds layers of brooding sounds which sometimes unfurl at a glacial pace and other times lurch with rhythmic propulsion, each piece distinct, densely packed, and all-consuming in their evocative atmospheres.
THE MON released its debut LP, Doppelleben, in 2018, and has since released a digital audio/video EP My Rotten Heart featuring Colin H. Van Eeckhout (Amenra). Now, 2023 sees the project prepared to release its second LP, Eye.