In 2001, the 15 year old TorO started playing guitar and also co-founded his first band, Leprous, in his home town of Notodden, Norway. 15 years later, Leprous is working on their fifth studio album, they tour around the world, and they just recorded their first live DVD from Rockefeller Music Hall in Oslo.
TorO has been a part of Leprous for his entire musical career, both playing guitars, doing backing vocals, composing music and writing lyrics. He was also, until recently, a regular part of Ihsahn’s live band, but couldn’t continue due to Leprous increasing touring activity. Ihsahn, being from the same small town as TorO, has also been an important part of his evolution as a musician, both as an inspiration and as being directly involved in all of Leprous’ recordings.
‘When I was starting playing guitar, Ihsahn was a big idol of mine. Then he became my guitar teacher, then my colleague and today I’m pround to call him one of my good friends, and I’m happy to be in the Aristides family together with him.’
As a guitarist, TorO is more of a rhythmical player, and has never been much of a shredder. He’s more concerned with finding the right sound and feel, rather than showing off technical skills.
‘I’ve never really been that much into impressive soloing just for the sake of it, as I much rather prefer listening to music that can put me in a certain mood or state of mind. The combination of the two, where you both have the technical elements, but also the good composition as a base is right down my alley. I think it’s important to remember though, that it’s not about playing things perfectly, but to play it with the right feeling.’
(picture by Matthias Kirsch)