Review: Pleq + Lüüp – The Redemption Bells EP

It’s like cowering by the doorway of a ghost town saloon; swinging doors whump and creak as a heavy, restless wind streams through them, with distant bells clanging incessantly in an ominous warning call. The Redemption Bells is the sound of staying in one spot, seeking change and progression through shifts in perspective and environment rather than moving between locations; bleeding inseparably into one’s surroundings rather than viewing them as a mere point of departure. A small, blurry map accompanies this 3-inch disc, providing a vague idea of location while ultimately letting the music fill in the colours and contours.

In the absence of grander forms of movement, the listener becomes attuned to those incremental swells and retractions that make the landscape really breathe. Pleq’s gale-force drones quiver and subside, bending gently in and out of pitch as if twisting and fluttering in the air, and while it’s far too easy to imagine slight changes as stasis drives attentive listening into the obsessive (arguably one of the music’s charms), one could swear that the clatter of the bells quickens and intensifies as the drones become more ferocious and blustery. On the other hand, there’s no mistaking the reactive and dynamic qualities of Lüüp’s flutes, which slink within the winds and feed beautifully off of those tiny tweaks to colour and mood – mimicking the shrill squeaks of un-oiled metal gates, leaning meditatively into the steady clang of the bells, entwining with the subtle tonality of Pleq’s vigorous gusts of noise.