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"Their aim is clear, if not exactly simple: to make music that is revolutionary, that encourages change--in music and in the world. After meeting Matthew Solberg (through the Craig's List website) and Francis Choung (through the ubiquitous Steve Aoki), the three men quickly decided that instead of choosing a lead singer, they'd sample audio files from documentary and narrative films, television programs and commercials, and recorded political events and speeches, and let those speak for them instead..."

From article in the Sep/Oct. 2004 issue of The Fader Magazine



"The post-rock band From Monument to Masses wants to do more than just make great music; they also hope to remind their audience to care and, better yet, to act. "

From article on Wiretap Online Magazine



"WE ALL KNOW the displeasure with the status quo that bubbles not so far beneath the Top 40. So what separates East Bay power trio From Monument to Masses from much of the marginalized political punk and rabble-rousing hip-hop out there? Intellectual breadth, for one thing. "[We] take on the 'Great Men' theory," the bandmates note, and assert that history is "pushed forward by masses of people engaged in collective struggle, not just a few messiahs or heroes."

From article in the Nov. 12-18, 2003 issue of the San Francisco Bay Guardian



"While the Oakland-based band works collectively on tasks ranging from merchandise design to songwriting, its nonmusical commitments are decidedly individual. What these activities have in common are politics and creativity, two driving forces behind the band. A third impulse is found in the group's name itself--a desire to shift historical attention away from prominent figureheads and toward social movements and community. "

From article in the April 21-27, 2004 issue of Metro



"FMTM uses the sounds of revolutionary critics, the banality of news programming and our nationŐs leaders as its narrative context allowing each listener to draw their own conclusions from their placement in the mix as to what the group believes. ItŐs hard to misunderstand what the group intends, but itŐs put forth in an interesting way: by using the voices of others they have chosen to silence their own particular critiques. In using the ideas of others and the musical ideas of other hardcore and post-rock bands, in fact, the group would seem to bring nothing new to the table. But it is simply in the combination of these elements that FMTM creates a new sound- not one that is intensely unfamiliar, but one that juxtaposes two elements that have never found their way towards one another in quite this format."

From review of The Impossible Leap in One Hundred Simple Steps by Stylus Magazine



" Comprised of Matt Solberg (guitar), Francis Choung (drums and programming), and Sergio Robledo-Maderazo (bass and synths), From Monument to Masses formed in January 2001 to play this really bitchin' instrumental post-rock. Using a number of effects and a sampling delay pedal, Solberg layers the songs with intricate guitar riffs while Choung and Robledo-Maderazo drive them frantically up and down and back and forth, twisting and turning through song lengths upwards of ten minutes. The band's alternately abrasive and melodic sound carries echoes of Fugazi, Trans Am, and Godspeed You Black Emperor."

From article in the Dec. 25-31, 2002 issue of the East Bay Express



"Possibly the most cohesive release of the year, every aspect of this album speaks to every other aspect: the artwork, the music, the samples, and the lyrics. Every single piece fits together to form so much more than just a simple whole. It creates this unity and strength that is rare in musical releases these days. In fact, this record feels more like a documentation of who we are and what we have become than just a rock-n-roll record akin to the best works of Don Caballero, Fugazi, and the infamous Bay Area band Grotus. ...It is an album full of rousing rhetoric and horrifying sound bites, arranged in an almost story-like format. ...Bottom line, the album opens with their strongest piece (Sharpshooter) and then it keeps building and building (My personal second favorite is a tie between 'The Spice Must Flow' and 'The Quiet Before'). ...In the end, the music is the message. It is full of conflict and tension, both resolved and unresolved. It shows us our world, mirroring in a new way the things we may have taken for granted. It makes you think while you also pump your fist in the air going 'hell yeah...'"

From review of The Impossible Leap in One Hundred Simple Steps by Indie Workshop



"Overall, the music is dead on and comes together really well throughout all it's genre blending. At one moment it will sound like a Fugazi mid-section only to go 90 degrees and sound like a Yes-style wank-off, and then off again another 90 to sound like Mouse On Mars. It's all fused together so seamlessly that it doesn't seem off or awkward at all. I'd advise anyone who has an interest in gaining a soundtrack to a political gathering to pick this up, but I'd also let anyone who's looking for some music to relax to know that this is perfect for that situation too."

From review of The Impossible Leap in One Hundred Simple Steps by Light Up The Sky



"Where has the intelligence gone? It seems that all it takes to make a highly acclaimed, commercially successful album these days is a little self-depreciating introspection and some whiny vocals.... Fortunately, there are some bands who still seek to make creative, intelligent music which pushes boundaries and challenges the assumptions of its audience. If this piques your interest, then "The Impossible Leap in One-Hundred Simple Steps," the newest offering from the Oakland-based trio From Monument to Masses, is worth taking a look at. Consider that Monument has made an album which stands up despite the virtual absence of vocals or fluffy, poppy choruses, and it becomes apparent that this band is worthy of very high praises indeed...."

From review of The Impossible Leap in One Hundred Simple Steps by Bay Area Buzz



"From Monument To Masses are an in-your-face political band, and they want you to know that they're deadly serious about the need for change in our society. The twist is that the trio doesn't say a thing. Instead, they create instrumental masterpieces that utilize the best musical concepts from post-punk, hardcore, prog-rock and anything else they deem necessary to get their point across. This can manifest itself as a jagged threat, a soothing reassurance or an arresting call to arms, often all in the same song. By constructing detailed, spacious songs, FMTM allow these juxtapositions to evolve gradually and naturally, giving each idea room to unfold and mature. While this translates into songs that push the eight minute mark, the music is so engaging that the length doesn't register; all you'll notice is some highly interesting and innovative playing. Instead of pressing their political agenda via insistent vocals, the band makes their ideas clear through the artwork and slogans in the CD insert. After that, it's up to you to translate the music into the ideology. By allowing their audience to decide the exact intent of passages like the raw drumming that opens "Sharpshooter", or the deft arpeggios of "Comrades & Friends", the group opens the floor for a much more nuanced and balanced dialog than that created by the direct instructions favored by most other political bands. This makes the education process more effective, more enjoyable and more enlightened."

From review of The Impossible Leap in One Hundred Simple Steps by Splendid



"They're not exactly familiar territory for the average hardcore/punk enthusiast, but this Oakland, California band are truly one of a kind. Protest music comes in many forms, from the two-minute hardcore blast to this; lengthy songs that incorporate audio clips and spoken word samples into the melodic foray. Mostly instrumental, From Monument to Masses create the atmosphere of hope and inspiration by layering poignant news clips and well-placed screams over their ambitious songs. A lot of this reminded me of Fugazi's Instrument soundtrack, and sometimes it gets bogged down in a repetitive hum, but if you are looking for a listener-friendly way to get educated about what is really going on in the world today, this CD is the perfect audio lesson."

From review of The Impossible Leap in One Hundred Simple Steps by Flex Your Head



"If you asked a group of Bay Area poli-sci post-rock experimentalists to meet up on Craigslist and form a band that liked Tortoise, Japancakes, Negativland, Mogwai, and Autechre, nobody would believe you, but SF's From Monument to Masses live up to their description almost as much as they do to their cultish hype. Well-placed news/meme samples (Dr. Strangelove, Malcolm X) work as the band's secret weapon, politically charging the band's abstract guitar instrumentals. The rockist direction of their LP The Impossible Leap in One Hundred Simple Steps, in fact, has been the only anti-corporate equivalent to Adam Freeland's Bill Hicks-heightened "We Want Your Soul" all summer. But don't be scared of their GusGus-like art-collective of filmmakers, graphic designers, and accountants. They mean well--and...their return to Seattle should be a good reason to start saying goodbye to our Fugazi consciousness forever."

From write-up in 07/31/03 issue of The Stranger



"You're always on the search, always out there looking for something new, something fresh, something different. Music has this affect on me. I'm always hoping that the next tune I hear, the next CD I listen to, the next MP3 I download, the next band that somebody tells me 'Man, you got to listen to these guys, they're amazing!' is going to affect me in such a way that I have to listen to the record, album, or song over and over and over and over, again and again and again..."

From review of From Monument To Masses. by Sound The Sirens



"From Monument To Masses shun the typical idealist blathering of disillusioned textbook slaves and Marxist wannabes, instead sampling the very words of the 1960's social and racial reform movement that swept across the United States. They combine the the verbal prose of great leaders with the abandonment of traditional structure ideas ala Marcel Duchamp. In short they're something like a dub-influenced Don Caballero interpreting the few common threads between the surrealist and anarchist movements of the latter twentieth century..."

From review of From Monument To Masses. by Lost At Sea



"The first release from this bay area band contains 5 tracks at about 35 minutes and is quite an achievement. The music and artwork is inspired by social/political consciousness and rebellion. Dim Mak seems like the perfect home for this trio, in idea and execution. Their music is a rolling soundscape that sounds like a fusion of the jazz style of Vermilion mixed with the bands of the hay-day of 90's political punk, U.O.A., Unwound, Indian Summer and the like. Most of what we hear vocally is sampled, which adds another layer of depth to the artwork that is From Monument to Masses. At times this music subdues, most often it inspires, and sometimes it simply rocks."

From review of From Monument To Masses. by Geek America



"From Monument To Masses are part of the ever growing Dim Mak label, and hail from the East Bay of Northern, CA. Much like their So. Cal contemporaries Tristeza, they play melodic and meandering instrumental soundscapes. FMTM throw in potent samples of revolutionary rhetoric and some mean ass bass lines. "Groove is in the heart" Lady Ms. Kier once said; and it's evident these chaps were listening. A little less intricate than Tristeza, but all the while as interesting. This 5 song ep is a welcome soundtrack. The CD packaging contains a very cool collage art poster as well. A stellar beginning."

From review of From Monument To Masses. by Buddyhead



"From Monument to Masses are one of the few bands I've ever found exciting. For a politically active, or at least outwardly dissident group, they have a lot to say without speaking at all. The release uses clinically based samples strictly in accordance with the musical progression to create different atmospheres. This done in such an original and exciting way is a truly rare thing. It's this reason that makes me feel that FMTMasses may be one of the most important bands I've ever heard."

"Usually I take a deep horrific inhalation, followed by rather cynical moan when it comes to music mixed with politics as I openly refute the point that they mix well. This record has proved me rather Saul to Damascus wrong. I'd just never thought a message could be communicated in such a way...."

From review of From Monument To Masses. by Drowned In Sound



"...honestly, it's so interesting that a politically motivated band breaks from the formula of hardcore screaming, FMTM could stand there with dirty bags over their heads and it would still be a relief. But thank goodness they make neat music, too--sort of dubby, post-punky, dynamic rock with a lot of quiet idiosyncrasies. As their latest self-titled album on Dim Mak proves, strong emotion felt in music can be more powerful than explicit messages...."

From write-up in 05/30/02 issue of Portland Mercury



"From Monument To Masses admit they loved punk in the past but unfortunately have developed an allergic reaction to it, hence they combine their musical powers to promulgate "non-evil." the short translation: FMtM used to play hardcore but are brainier musicians and better players. Now their style is one of gently brushed beats, easy, sometimes-swooping jazzbo riffs with Motownish, James Jamerson-influenced bass playing. their occasionally long-form sets give way to lightly escalating space trips, revealing the true test of their smarts and their discipline."

From show spotlight in 03/29/02 issue of LA Weekly



"Politically, this album is grounded in 60s Radical politics and the French Surrealist movement (as evidenced by the album artwork and samples throughout the CD). Musically, From Monument to Masses explode without vocals. Instead, they rely heavily on perfect placement of samples from radio broadcasts of the 60s and segments from speeches at demonstration rallies. It's a blend that I like because there is no chance of lyrics sounding overly forced or cheesy and thereby ruining the enjoyment of the music, which happens far too often with bands with a political agenda. (There is some shouting at the end of track four and screaming at the end of track 5, which I believe is a band member, but I'm not sure.)"

"Instead, the band concentrates heavily on writing complicated song structures that still rock out. Something like a cross between Don Caballero and Shipping News. Songs that soar around with great progish guitar and bass progressions. The drumming varies quite a bit, bringing the tempo up and down for the band to anxiously keep up with. The music isn't particularly fast, but it does not feel somber like instrumental rock bands tend to sound. It's rather a celebration of movement and I bet live the band is an incredible spectacle."

From review of From Monument To Masses. by Sincere Brutality