Leprous - The Congregation

(CD 2015, 65:54, Inside Out Music)

The tracks:
  1- The Price(5:14)
  2- Third Law(6:18)
  3- Rewind(7:07)
  4- The Flood(7:51)
  5- Triumphant(4:25)
  6- Within My Fence(3:16)
  7- Red(6:35)
  8- Slave(6:37)
  9- Moon(7:13)
10- Down(6:26)
11- Lower(4:34)

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The previous album of the Norwegian prog metal band Leprous Coal (2013, see review) was quite to my liking. However I totally disliked (read: hated) the last track of that album which contained a lot of screaming and grunting of Insahn; who is supposed to be a singer...

On their new album The Congregation there is unfortunately again a similar scream song, Rewind, I can hardly listen to. That is a shame as the rest of the song material is really quite inventive and original. Of course you can detect influences from bands like Pain Of Salvation, Devin Townsend, Radiohead, Mew and even Muse, but these guys have a rather original style and sound of their own. The ten new songs, Rewind not included obviously, are all rather expressive, dark, but also catchy after a couple of spins. Singer Elnar Solberg has a very distinctive, clear voice which dominates the music of Leprous in a very good way; just listen to the concise opening song The Price or the melancholic Moon and you will understand my point. Highlights for me are Third Law, Red and The Flood which are songs that really stand out of the common prog metal scene. This is really a progressive metal album which I recommend to all lovers of experimental, powerful and daring metal music. Skip Rewind and you have a master piece in your collection. Enjoy at maximum volume!! The limited edition Mediabook CD as well as the 2LP version of the album will include the special bonus track Pixel.

**** Martien Koolen (edited by Astrid de Ronde)

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