Exclusive – Sean Reinert On CYNIC Break Up "Musical Performances & Prep Were Not Up To Par"
Yesterday was a very upsetting day for Cynic fans. Founding drummer Sean Reinert announced on the band's page that the band has broken up due to personal differences between him and frontman Paul Masvidal. Later in the day, Masvidal posted that this was all news to him and he doesn't see the band as broken up. He then complained about being locked out of the band's Facebook page. This morning, Reinert posted a screenshot showing that Masvidal still had access to post on the page, but with less privileges than Reinert.
With all this drama going down, Sean reached out to Metal Injection to help clear the air on his grievances and what follows is the interview we just conducted. In the interest of clarity, we decided to have this conversation over instant message.
Metal Injection: What was the final straw that made you decide you no longer want to be in Cynic?
Sean Reinert: Pretty much when the musical preparation and performances were not up to par. I am able to put personal issues aside from the music, but when music suffers; it's time to call it
Metal Injection: So you were unhappy with Paul's performance at your recent shows? Is this something you two discussed?
Sean Reinert: That was just the icing. There has been quite a bit of tension for several years. I had gotten into a pattern of being passive on the business end and when things got bad I turned to alcohol. It was a bad cycle. Now that I've been out of that cloud for almost a year I'm seeing and feeling the damage. I'm to blame for letting that happen, but I don't have to continue under those circumstances any longer now that I can see how toxic our relationship had become. And yes we had discussed his lack of practice even back to last summer's US tour.
Metal Injection: Is there a specific reason why you feel Paul didn't want to practice?
Sean Reinert: I can't really answer that. I think much more then that it was the accumulation of differences in musical directions and business practices. Just pragmatically, it wasn't a healthy or profitable situation any longer. So rather then play bad shows and suffer through 15 days of tension I decided for me, it was time to end this chapter of CYNIC.
Metal Injection: Are you saying you weren't happy with the direction of the last album or am I reading into things?
Sean Reinert: No, I am generally happy with Kindly Bent To Free Us, but the through the process of recording it, became more and more evident how much "control"/influence and or lack there of, I would be allowed with respect to the music and aesthetic without conflict/tension. I enjoyed creating the last record as much as possible.
Metal Injection: Last night, Paul claimed you locked him out of the band's Facebook page and this morning you posted a screenshot showing that he was still granted "Editor" privileges. Meanwhile, you were listed as an "Administrator." Was it always like this or did you lower his privileges? If so, why?
Sean Reinert: I did lower his privileges only to protect both of our free speech on that page. Pure and simple. As an editor, he still has the ability to post and remove posts, he just can't remove me from the page. From now on, I am only posting on my personal Facebook page, just so people will stop thinking I'm some tyrant. I'm not on the offense.
Metal Injection: Paul has expressed interest in continuing to play Cynic's music with a new drummer. Would he still be able to perform under the Cynic banner or do both of you own the name?
Sean Reinert: He would have to perform under a different name or get a signed agreement with me in order to legally use it. At the moment there is no such agreement. I am not claiming it, therefore he cannot. CYNIC just plainly ceases to exist at this point, as an active band. Obviously, the catalog will remain.
Metal Injection: Finally, what would it take for you to reconsider your position and collaborate with Paul again?
Sean Reinert: I can't imagine a circumstance.
In the interest of fairness, we reached out to Paul Masvidal for comment, showing him this entire interview. He responded by saying "Sean's action and words sadden me but ultimately this is a private matter." Masvidal added that when has more clarity on the matter, fans will hear from him directly.