Leprous is a progressive metal band that combines characteristics of neo-psych and future funk into their esoteric sound. Leprous was formed in 2001 and released a series of demos before releasing their critically acclaimed debut studio album, Tall Poppy Syndrome, in 2009. A brief tour as the live backing band for former Emperor frontman Ihsahn in 2010 helped raise Leprous’s public profile. The band released their highly anticipated sophomore long-player Bilateral in 2011, which featured guest vocals from Ihsahn. The brooding Coal was released in 2013, and The Congregation was released in 2015, earning the group their first Spellemannprisen (the Norwegian version of a Grammy Award). Malina, Leprous’s ambitious fifth studio long-player, was released in 2017, softening their sound while becoming more experimental, and was followed by a lengthy European tour. Following a brief hiatus, Leprous returned to producer David Castillo’s renowned Ghostward Studios in Stockholm in February 2019 with mix engineer Adam Noble, where they spent the next six months recording. They enlisted the help of a cellist, a violinist, and a classical choir for the sessions. InsideOut released Pitfalls, the completed album, in late October. It debuted at number 17 on the Heatseekers chart, which was higher than its previous albums. These are the 10 Best Leprous Songs of all time.
The opening of this song sounds like the hair metal bands of the 80s but updated. Einar Solberg’s voice sounds pop-rock over a softer version of metal. The drums create a driving beat, and the electronic overlays create a metal symphony. The song ends with something that can only be described as a primal scream.
9. The Valley
The song opens with a combination of synthesizer and drums. Like so many other songs, we hear vocals that sound mournful. Light drums in the background, and the vocals hold steady until the middle of the song. Although the drums pick up in the middle of the music and Solberg’s voice escalates, the guitars and vocals stay sparse throughout the song. Near the middle of the song, there is a period of ethereal chanting. As the song closes, there is brief punctuation of drums and guitars that lighten slightly and become more forceful. The song picks up in the final three minutes, and vocals, guitars, and drums come together symphonically. The nine-minute song evokes many of Pink Floyd’s psychedelic operas.
There are elements of speed metal in this song. It’s another Leprous song that has a beat you feel deeply. It’s a fusion of metal and hard rock that works well with the vocals. Unlike some of their other songs, you hear a deeper range of Solberg’s voice. As the song progresses, you hear a fuller heavy metal guitar similar to early Metallica.
7. Contaminate Me
The song starts over with heavy metal drums and vocals; the guitars are obscured by the other components of the song. There are light symbols that echo in the background. Solberg’s vocals evolve again in this song, coming from his throat and creating a raw sound absent on many other songs. However, he switches his voice to a more melodic accompaniment with drums that stay consistently heavy metal until halfway through the song. It segues to another portion with a minute or so of music with a Native American Influence. Even though Solberg’s voice returns to a raw sound, everything else in the song remains calmer, especially with the echoing Native American flute.
The overall feeling of this song is hard rock. There are several guitar solos, and the drums stay steady throughout the song. Solberg’s voice lends itself to the song because he chameleons to different types of instrumentations found in a wide variety of genres.
5. The Cloak
The song’s beginning is a few drops of waters that segue to a guitar riff similar to Bush on Sixteen Stone. The song is a throwback to the rock ballads of the 90s when many top names like Bush slowed down their music and stripped it down to showcase the singer. However, the punctuation of drums throughout the song gives it a depth absent in other songs.
The song starts out with a thunderstorm that transitions into a guitar solo. As it starts, you hear a lighter, more uptempo side of the group. However, you are caught unaware as they go back to the more profound, heavier metal side of the spectrum. Yet, the song goes back and forth between two incongruent genres almost instantaneously.
This is another song that pulls from the 90s. The sparseness and the steady drums sound like the song Creep from Radiohead. However, the song opens up, the drums become heavier, and the guitar and vocals are slightly obscured by more serious drum beats. One of the things Leprous does in many of their songs relies on instrumentation instead of vocals, creating symphonic metal. However, instead of staying in a single genre of music, they fuse together a wide range of styles, recreating and blending them together.
2. The Price
The opening of the song is a series of staccato drum guitar riffs punctuated by a steady drumbeat. This song is a softer side of punk and metal. Solberg’s voice is haunting and blends well with the lighter sides of the song. When the group goes full throttle, he amplifies his voice to match the intensity of the music. When the group departs from the steadiness of the instrumentation, the overall effect creates an urgent feel.
1. Forced Entry
There is controlled chaos as this song opens. You here synthesized instruments threading through the drums and guitars. Throughout the song, you hear speed metal drums and heavier guitar riffs. Solberg’s voice is in its element, blending and stand out from everything going on in the music. You hear more ethereal chanting as the song progresses to the middle and end of the song. Much like their other longer tracks, you hear multiple genres with a heavy emphasis on speed metal drums before it fades to additional song sections with unexpected instrumentation.