Originally posted to Instagram on October 11, 2021
Album recommendation: ‘Bilateral’ by Leprous
MINI ALBUM REVIEW COLLAB
Leprous is a band that I only recently got into, but have fallen in love with very quickly. Their latest release ‘Aphelion’ is one of my favorites of 2021 so far and ‘Bilateral’ proves that they’ve been talented for a long time.
Leprous is a progressive rock/metal band from Norway. They released ‘Bilateral’ over ten years ago in August 2011. The first thing you’ll probably notice is the strange album artwork. After listening to this album many times, I can honestly tell you that I have no idea how the artwork ties in, but I still think it’s creative if not peculiar.
Much like the album cover, I had little luck deciphering the message of most of the songs. However, I do also appreciate the ambiguity of the lyrics and the artwork. They carry a depth that requires further exploration than I could commit for this review. Also, the writing is brilliantly executed with clever rhymes and interesting word choices.
Musically speaking, this album is brilliant. The rhythms on this record are extremely tight and the range of vocalist Einar Solberg particularly stands out. This record is definitely heavier than ‘Aphelion’ (my only point of reference), with more prevalent screams and djent-ier, polyrhythmic guitar work. They’re also not afraid to experiment. “Mediocrity Wins” highlights some funky bass slaps, “Painful Detour” has obvious jazz influences, and “Thorn” features a haunting trumpet sound as well as guest vocalist Ihsahn. These traits make ‘Bilateral’ feel diverse. Each song has its own identity while still feeling part of a whole thanks to the brilliant mixing and mastering.
Overall, ‘Bilateral’ is complicated yet catchy. Groovy yet melodic. It’s weird enough to be avant-garde while still feeling accessible with recognizable melodies. It’s a fantastic album and I’d recommend it to anyone who enjoys progressive rock and metal.
Massive thanks to @denis_musicreviews for setting this collab review up and to everyone else on Instagram who participated.