Frédéric Leclercq on Sinsaenum: “I’ve Always Wanted to do This Kind of Music”

Most readers probably know Frédéric Leclercq (or just Fred) as the bassist for the renowned extreme-power metal act Dragonforce. However, he’s recently made news this year with the formation of Sinsaenum, a blackened-death metal act featuring an all-star cast of co-conspirators: Joey Jordinson (Slipknot), Heimoth (Decrepit Spectre), Stéphane Buriez (Loudblast), Sean Zatorsky (Daath), and Atilla Csihar (oh for God’s sake, do you really need me to tell you who he is?…fine: Mayhem, Tormentor).

The band has made a lot of progress in a short amount of time, including the release of Echoes of the Tortured this year. So to find out a little more, I was able to chat with Fred and see what else the band has in store:

Congrats on the release of the album this year! How did the project originally come together? 

Thank you very much! Ive always wanted to do this kind of music…so I piled up ideas and around 2010, 2011 I approached Steph with some demos and he was interested. there was no rush, no real plan, just the will to play death metal together. I toured with Joey in 2008 and we discovered a mutual love for extreme metal, so when I sent him the songs in 2013 (by then I had most of them half ready) and he really enjoy them, everything started to become more serious, we were 2 guitarists and had a drummer. so then we contacted the other members. What was important for me is that I wanted to do it with friends, with people I connected with one way or another, not just names. We could have contacted people just based on their abilities but I wanted the friendship first. Turns out I have very talented friends hahaha

What stylistic elements would you say each member brings to the band?

Its hard to say. I have my very own vision of Sinsaenum, I composed all the music and half the lyrics, and they totally respect that, but they did bring their own touch and made the songs 100 times better than the demos. Stephane brought something almost macabre in his solos, its definitely different than what I came up with; Sean brought a lot of power and aggression with his voice; same could be said about Joey, who made the songs become “alive” because my demos where very stiff-due to the drum machine- and Im not a drummer so I just had the basic ideas but he improved the rythmical foundation of it all; Attila brought the creepiness and the chaos that makes this album more than just a simple death metal record, the combination of the two vocals creates something very unique. Heimoth did not do the bass on the album, I did, but he is very solid, we rehearsed together and it sounded great, plus he has a lot of venomous ideas when it comes to riffs.

Was this album just a one-time deal, or do you have future music planned?

I am currently writing new songs, and like I said Heimoth wrote something too, and Im gonna start sending out the demos to the band. Its not a one time deal at all. We are very busy with our other bands, and they were there before so they take priority, which is totally fine, but Sinsaenum is here for the long run, the monster is alive and real. There is a strong connection between us and we all want to carry on. 

Are there any tours or festival appearances in store? 

Thats something we would love to do but like I said it is very difficult due to everyone’s schedule. I am playing with Loudblast at the moment, Attila is busy with Mayhem doing the De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas tour, Joey just recently announced a serie of gigs with Vimic…so its very difficult to have us all in the same room at the same time! And something we dont want to do is to appear on stage with one member missing, because it would not be fair to the fans, Sinsaenum is us 6 or nothing. thats where we’re at right now when it comes to live shows. Im sure people understand. 

Would you guys ever play songs live from your respective other acts?

I dont know. I don’t think so. well, DEFINITELY in the rehearsal room, for fun, but I don’t think we would like to reproduce that kind of fun on stage. I dont want Sinsaenum to become a tribute band, it has its own identity and I dont think it would be a good start to spread ourselves too thin. So the answer is no. Sinsaenum will maybe some covers, but not from our respective bands, no.

While I totally understand his answer to that last question, I’d still be curious to see such an eclectic group pull off some of their other work. Imagine: “Spit it Out” on the same set list as “Pagan Fears,” the heresy would be electrifying!