Alternative music reviews

July 12, 2008

Just Another Human Being by The Leano

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just another human beingThis is the second Leano album and has a lot to live up to since the first Steps To Leanoland was the first Hip Hop/Rap album I really liked.

I have to admit that I have had trouble getting into this album – perhaps it is more determinedly in the Rap camp than I am used to. Certainly I found the lyrics always interesting – were the early reviews really as bad as Worse Than Bad imply? But there are times on this album when it loses me, generally on the more polemical tracks because I can’t relate to lines about ‘leaders’ when I have never thought of anyone as my leader (Nihilism doesn’t rule, ok).

But on the track Praise Him things change for me and the Reggae guitar backing is just wonderful. It’s a Pop song full of melody and an inspiring chorus – although I do have to ignore the religious message, personally.

Praise Him

Praise Him (clip) by The Leano

A few tracks later and The Leano returns to more like the style of his earlier album with Music Gives Me What I Need where he talks about getting up, smoking a little weed, and getting distracted by his need to make music. There’s a nice jazzy feel to this and some very cool Sax as well. My problems with “message songs” nearly ruins War With Meaning but the underlying music with its lilting rhythm and wandering distorted guitar eventually wins me over.

The final track How To Make A World raises the issues of over-population, Man’s destructiveness to the environment, and third-world poverty. But it raises them in the context of a charming and clever song based on the idea of teacher getting his students to make a world in their science lesson. Oh, and there’s a Reggae style guitar backing as well as a tuneful chorus.

How To Make A World by The Leano

How To Make A World(clip) by The Leano

So, overall this is not an album for me. However there are some tracks that will go on my ‘best of’ collection of mp3s I keep in my car.

The Leano on MySpace