Q&A with Leper Messiah

Vidar, the singer from Norwegian rock band Leper Messiah, filled out a quick Q&A for us!

Hey! Thanks for stopping by!

Hey, Scrunchie Magazine! 

Thanks for having me; I like your style 🙂
I’m Vidar, the singer of Norwegian rock band LEPER MESSIAH; give us a visit on: https://www.facebook.com/TheLeperMessiahBand

WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST IMPRESSION OF YOUR BANDMATES WHEN YOU MET?

I first met Øyvind (rhythm guitar), back in 2011, when we met up for our very first rehearsal to see what would come out of it. We had struck up a conversation on Facebook and he invited me to the test-rehearsal. I was very nervous, but Øyvind is a good dude and it all went extremely well. He struck me immediately as a kind guy but a vicious joker; I don’t think he would help me hide a body, but he just MIGHT agree to drive the car 😉 

A few rehearsals in, Øyvind brought Per “Pab” Henrik in on drums. They had played together in an earlier band and were already a tight music unit. Pab’s playing instantly elevated our rehearsals with structure and great timing. The guy was an awesome drummer, extremely solid, but he didn’t say much, just sat silently behind the kit and perhaps smiled once or twice at Øyvind’s jokes! So, me and him were basically the two shy dudes in the fledgling band, with Øyvind keeping the mood. 

We quickly started looking for a bass player to round out the band, but there was a real shortage of available bassists. (Btw, anybody know why it is so very hard to find bassists? They’re like an endangered species!). Luckily, Peri, a great local guitarist with a budding interest in the bass guitar, answered our call. He almost didn’t show up to our first rehearsal, citing doubt in his own skills as a bass player, but I convinced him that we were a brand-new band and all of us were a bit shite so he’d bit the hook. *laughs* Peri came in cemented the band; he was several magnitudes more experienced than the rest of us, and quickly infused the band and our sound with professionalism. In other words, a great addition! So, Peri, with good reason, was slightly bossy at our early rehearsals, which was very much appreciated by the rest of us. He was little bit introvert, too, but not as much as Pab and myself. 

After a few years touring this lineup, Peri was getting fed up playing his secondary instrument and we all agreed it made much more sense for him to take on the main guitar duties while we brought in a fifth, dedicated bassist member of the band. So we started anew the hunt for a bass player… We were getting some attention as a band by then, and quite a few people tried out for the spot; a couple even guest-stared for us at gigs, but none were quite right. And then we found Iggy, this young, wild, & wacky Pole who brought life and a sexy bassline to Leper Messiah; a great match 😀

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE MEMORY PLAYING SHOWS? 

Personally, it is probably the huge golden-oldies mega concert we did in 2019, along with 15 other bands, or whatever it was, on the town square of our hometown of Bergen. It was a celebration of good old 50s, 60s, & 70s rock, and it was the last show we did that my mum attended (she passed away in 2020); basically, we played music from her youth, which was very nice and she was absolutely on fire in front of the stage. Those are fond memories to have…

For the band, overall, it is probably one of the local RockFest mini-festivals we host annually, inviting three select bands to come play with us in an all-night celebration of rock music. Those are always a highlight of the year, and if you ever get a chance to attend, do come to a RockFest; you will not regret it!

WHAT ARTIST WOULD BE YOUR DREAM COLLABORATION?

I would’ve loved to do a warm-up tour for David Bowie back in the day, but that ship has sailed… Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds would be awesome to tour with, as would L7 or Joan Jett & the Blackhearts or Iggy Pop or Placebo? Oh man, there are so many great acts out there… so many geniuses. 

WHAT SONG ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF AND WHY?

We’ve just released our debut album – FELL CREATURES – which you can check out here:

On it are 10 songs about hardship and bad people and good people doing bad things, and my personal favorite track is “Dance with the Devil (Alcohol)”, a classical rocker about partying and alcoholism. I wrote the song while working on the rather unhealthy drinking habits I’d acquired at uni, so that’s a very personal track to me.

WHAT IS YOUR GO-TO GAS STATION ORDER?

A juicy salad if it doesn’t look too dodgy.

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR NON-MUSICAL INFLUENCES?

Touring is a big one, with all the weird and wonderful people you meet on the road. But I also write a lot, being an aspiring fantasy fiction writer, and random things I come across while researching often triggers musical creation; you know, one art style influencing the other. I also read a lot of biographies and history, and there are a few songs on the album inspired by such stuff.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO YOUR YOUNGER SELF? 

Start out earlier and work harder; don’t let yourself get distracted by a gazillion unimportant things. Chose 2 or 3 things to dedicate your life too and focus hard on those.

WHAT ARE YOUR GOALS FOR THE YEAR? 

We begin touring the album this fall, with a host of local gigs, before (hopefully – the plague allowing) we’ll visit Poland and the UK (and possibly the Netherlands and Florida) for an extended “world tour” next year. Who knows where we’ll go from there, but hopefully we’ll see y’all at a gig real soon!

Thanks again for inviting us un, Scrunchie. It’s been a blast!

Best wishes,

Vidar & Leper Messiah

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