Leka is the brainchild of Juuso Leinonen and is a one-man progressive death metal project from Finland, and his latest release, Catopia is somewhat of a confusing EP. It’s a Frankenstein-style mish-mash of different genres and on the surface it really shouldn’t work – but it does.
Take the opener, Offering To The Fluffy One for example. It opens with some soft female vocals, but then some hammering drums swiftly kick in and the song takes a loud and noisy death metal approach. Then, right when you’ve gotten into the rhythm and are furiously headbanging away…a jazz section kicks in, complete with a fantastic saxophone solo!!! It’s almost as if he hasn’t quite made up his mind about which approach to take with it all, so decided to blend several styles into one entity. It’s a brave and daring move, but it really pays off and results in a hugely distinctive style.
The End Starts Now is another fantastic number. The sheer metal in the first part of the track is utter perfection, with the saxophone in the background working well, and the vocals are wonderfully powerful. The acoustic section with female and male vocals is a nice little contrast to it, and the synth afterwards is mindblowing! There’s a lot going on in this one and on each listen, you notice something new!
To say Catopia is an individual and daring release is a bit of an understatement. On the outside, it sounds like it could be a complete disaster, as it’s not every day you come across death metal and jazz within one entity, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Leka has something special and I already can’t wait to hear any future releases if this is anything to go by.
You can get Catopia for completely free from Leka’s bandcamp page, so what are you waiting for?