I got into Mono when they were described as Mogwai Junior or the Japanese Mogwai. Fairly accurate, if not flattering, descriptions. I actually bought their second album first, One Step More and You Die. The blurb on the "employee picks" rack where it resided compared them to My Bloody Valentine (as well as Mogwai) and I was intrigued. Still, they were promising and they delivered the goods. The Kidnapper Bell, from their first album, Under The Pipal Tree, remains as one of my favorite Mono tracks.
I kinda burned myself out on them in 2005. They were touring in support of their Walking Cloud album and they must have come through the Bay Area some 6-7 times that year. My cousin and I saw them at least 5 times, from what I remember. A couple times, it was at some art gallery and the admission price was $5; who could resist?
But yes, a bit of a burnout ensued. I kept up with their releases, but wasn't listening as intently as before. Now it's mid 2012 and I've been enjoying their 2010 live album, Holy Ground, with the Wordless Music Orchestra. Mono are no longer Mogwai Junior, they've grown, redefined themselves and they have their own voice and this album beautifully illustrates those points. Time to start listening again.
Mono - Halcyon (Beautiful Days)