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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Pleq - "Sound of Rebirth"

Artist: Pleq
Album: Sound of Rebirth
Year: 2010
Label: Impulsive Art
Genre: IDM, Ambient, Minimal
this album on discogs: here



"Sound of Rebirth" is a new album from prolific polish IDM/ambient producer Pleq. It's pretty similar to his other works: a melancholic combination of sad, minimal ambient atmospheres and idm percussion. "Sound of Rebirth" fits in with his other recent albums such as "My Life Begins Today" in that it is mostly percussion driven, yet more minimal than his early IDM works.

Good stuff:
+ Pleq returns with all of his signature marks. His clicky, fuzzy percussion is back. His quiet, depressing ambiance is back. The somber melodies are back as well, and everything is in top form. His tracks always carry a pretty similar feeling to them, but he is amazing when it comes to delicate sounding, not too invasive, pensive soundscapes. I think the track title "A Very Gentle Death" sums up how this album sounds. Very beautiful atmospheres.
+ He brings back the tracks Hackneyed Words and Integral from some older releases, re-mastered, and they sound amazing. These are some of my favorite tracks from him and it's great to hear them being given a tuneup.
+ There is some variety in the track styles, while the album retains a very consistent atmosphere of calm melancholy. It reminds me of being in a museum of modern art where all the walls are stark white, yet the artwork itself is strange and organic. There are some tracks with vocals, some faster tracks with more percussion, some slower tracks with less percussion, and some remixes.
+ Pleq has a very specific style and all of his tracks are extremely "pleq-ish". The remixes are a much welcomed departure from this, and they are all very good. The Tapage mix cranks up the volume and provides a different type of organic-feeling IDM (feels like being outside overlooking an ocean), the Nebulo mix takes you to a darker, more abstract place; transforming Pleq's sounds and melodies into something eerily similar but yet much stranger. The Spyweirdos mix keeps the lush, sweeping atmospherics, but thankfully ditches the vocals. They also add a semi annoying sax-like sound.

Bad stuff:
- Typically I love female vocals, but I can't stand the ones that appear on this album. There are two songs with two different vocalists, but I don't feel their styles nor deliveries fit with the music. They may been better with better recording/processing. His remix of Magnitophono also has vocals, and I dislike them, but I can't fault him for those. At least those are very sparse and therefore manageable. In contrast, on the track "A Very Gentle Death" there are some quite subtle vocal-ish sounds, and they fit well and sound great.
- My main critique with Pleq albums is that he rarely seems to evolve; instead he just seems to be creating continuations of his previous work. The songs on here are good, but he uses the exact same sounds and elements time and time again. The percussion on almost every track is nearly identical, or at least the sounds used are. I could say similar things about the atmospheric elements and melodies as well. 

"Sound of Rebirth" works as a pretty good cross-section of Pleq's work. If you are new to him than this would be a good place to start. If you are familiar with his work than this is going to be more of the same, but the tracks themselves are well written and interesting. Great, depressive atmospheres as always.  Definitely something to check out if you like the low key, minimal, somber, atmospheric ambient/IDM that's clicky but not too glitchy or technical. Looking at this on its own I would probably rate it an 8.5 or so, but when you take into account that it's not really very different from his other work, I have to give it a 7.5.

Overall Rating:

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