One folk inspired artist with an ear for the pastoral and the generally uplifting meets another who has made all things dark and dreary his own; a collaboration that could either work fantastically well or fall completely flat. In case of The Redemption Bells, however, it borders the earlier and doesn’t even come close to the latter.
The collaborative EP by Greek flautist and composer Stelios Romaliadis (Lüüp) and Polish cellist / droneweaver Bartosz Dziadosz (Pleq) plays out as a document of destruction, of something that once existed but now remains only in the form of dust and rubble. There are signs of something having lived and perhaps thrived there, but it’s anyone’s guess how it reached its demise. The harsh noises and drones play as the backdrop of the story, slowly attempting to paint a picture of how it was and how it came to be whereas the flute interludes act as the narration. The flute adds a level of mystique, dancing around the shadows and drawing the listener into the chaos that’s become. The length of the EP also works well for this particular piece of music, its brevity makes sure that there won’t be any loss of interest on the listeners’ part but is long enough to adequately tell the story they wanted to tell.
I have always thought that Pleq’s music shines in collaborations, with Quietus Gradualis with Spheruleus being my personal favourite and whileThe Redemption Bells might not be as good, it’s definitely an album that merits multiple listens and one that thoroughly engages its listener through out its running length. Hopefully a building block for further collaborations between these two talented artists. (Mohammed Ashraf)