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Music / Flyleaf

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Flyleaf is a Post-Grunge/Alternative Metal band from Texas formed by Lacey Sturm (formerly Mosley), lead guitarist Sameer Bhattacharya, rhythm guitarist Jared Hartmann, bassist Pat Seals, and drummer James Culpepper. They are notable for their Christian faith, although their music is not explicitly labeled Christian.

The band has released four albums so far:

  • Flyleaf: The platinum selling, eponymously named debut album, released in 2005.
  • Memento Mori: Their second album, released in 2009.
  • New Horizons: Their third album, released in October of 2012. One week prior to its release, the band issued a statement saying that Lacey was leaving the band to focus on her motherhood. The split appears to have been amicable.
  • Between the Stars: Their fourth and most recent album, released in September of 2014. It is the only album to feature Kristen May and be funded through the online direct-to-fan platform Pledge Music.

The band went on a long hiatus between Kristen May leaving in 2016 and Lacey returning in 2022.

Some tropes embodied by the band and their work are:

  • The Band Minus the Face:
    • It remains to be seen whether Flyleaf becomes this after the announcement that Lacey is leaving the band and will be replaced by Kristen May of the band Vedera.
    • For most of Kristen's run, she shared the spotlight more evenly with the rest of the band.
  • Big "YES!": The EP version of the song "Cassie" opens with an emphatic "I... will... say YES!" It's moved to the bridge on the album version.
  • Careful with That Axe: "I'm So Sick". "I will BREAK!!"
  • Concept Album: Memento Mori. Each song is, according to the liner notes, based off of letters written by the fictional commander of an army that is at war with "The Dread Army". The war is an allegorical conflict based off of the general struggle between good and evil from a Christian point of view.
  • The Cover Changes the Meaning: "What's This?" used to be so... happy.
  • Fluffy Cloud Heaven: "Set Apart This Dream" seems to describe one of these.
  • Lighter and Softer:
    • "Justice and Mercy" is one of the heaviest songs the band's ever written. "Justice and Mercy [Violent Love Version]" is not.
    • The Remember To Live EP, released in late 2010, is a collection of B-sides and alternate takes of several songs. The entire EP is this trope.
    • In fact, Between the Stars is this in sound compared to their previous albums, featuring a more straight Alternative Rock and Pop Rock sound, as opposed to the Alternative Metal and Post-Grunge of those albums.
  • Metal Scream: Most famously on "I'm So Sick", but also on their songs Cassie (see Big "YES!" above), Sorrow, and Justice and Mercy. The screams are almost entirely absent from their second album, though. The screams are more prominent again on New Horizons, their third album.
    • In Memento Mori there is a certain amount of screaming, but these are usually two recordings played at the same time. One has Lacey singing, the other is screaming, with the screaming in the background. Listen to the end of "The Kind" (I'm sorry FATHER, I'm sorry SISTER, I'm sorry BROTHER...). It's easier to hear in "In the Dark" (Fill this space IDLE WORDS!!!) and (By the dark, DAMN THE DARK!!!!!), or "Swept Away" (So get this hell out get this hell OUTOUTOUT OF MY WAY!)
  • Pop Punk: Between the Stars has moments of this. Songs like "Magnetic" and "Sober Serenade" wouldn't sound out of place on Paramore's Riot or Brand New Eyes.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: "Swept Away" to one of the leaders of the Dread Army, "Call You Out" to an unidentified person who is apparently an inveterate liar and needs to "shut up, get out".
  • Shout-Out:
    • In "Cage on the Ground": "Welcome to the Machine, it's a currency generator, and then it's a guillotine..."
    • In "Fire Fire", which doubles as a Take That! towards Kesha: "We can't die because we're young, at least that's what we heard in a song."
  • Take That!: "Cage on the Ground" sounds an awful lot like a Take That! at the tendency of the music industry to force musicians who once had artistic integrity to produce soulless hits. It particularly seems to target mainstream talent competitions like American Idol.