It is true. The RMR blog did post pretty critical coverage of Leprous‘ latest deliveries. And for cause, with Malina really taking the plunge in 2017.
Over the last years, the band with Einar Solberg at the helm, moved ever farther down into the sugary abyss other bands already shipwrecked in. And away from a once strong prog metal performance. Now, as the new release came closer, we got bits and pieces that indicated a new era approaching. For Leprous.
Yet, as it happens, this is Einar Solberg talking on Pitfalls, with Leprous – the band – as his merry men. Don’t believe me? Well, hit their YouTube channel and tell me who you see most.
True, authenticity speaks loudly. But this is all about the lead, the person. Depression, dark tunnels of despair, music as your therapeutic tool. Those are all genuine reasons and powerful metaphors to start rapping about. No contest there.
And those also present that one menu to embark on a solo project, outside of the brand Leprous represents. That’s what self-reflection is all about. And besides, depression and self-doubt need quiet to heal, so there you go. Others have done that already, some to great success, others less so.
But will this warrant a full review for Leprous, the band? The one with a once-vibrant progressive metal stance? The answer is no. Of course, we could have gushed about the outstanding musicianship, intricate song patterns, Einar Solberg‘s vocal powers, what have you. Or about the courage to take new pathways to artistic nirvana.
But hey, I kinda expect that the bands on this blog know how to play an instrument and work a decent song structure. And besides, Leprous is well known for its outstanding technical prowess.
We also could have demonstrated to the critical voices out there that the RMR crew can stomach a change in direction. To prove that this is a progressive bunch over here, not old farts bemoaning the disappearance of metal from a distant past. Thus joining the group of yaysayers that will never issue a negative, because it looks bad on their ratings.
But we did not. As a Leprous project, Pitfalls does not bode well for the brand that this band stands (or stood) for. And the name of the album might very well become its very own omen. It is never a good sign when I have to state lyrics as the main driving factor, when the music should dominate the record. Or when the vocalist truly emerges as the last one standing.
In short, Einar Solberg made a solo project with his very own support band. And he should have been honest about it and called it that. But – perhaps – we all misunderstood and Leprous is actually and has ever been, only Einar. Who knows?