Cynic Biography, Discography.

Band "Cynic" :: read Biography, Discography, Members and more...
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Style: Progressive Death
Country: USA
Views: 3736. Updated: 07 November, 2004 by Project Moderators

Biography of Band

Cynic was formed in November, 1987 by guitarist Paul Masvidal and drummer Sean Reinert. To finish up the lineup, Mark Van Erp (later of Monstrosity) was added on bass and a friend named Jack Kelly was added on vocals thus making Cynic a four-piece. This early incarnation of Cynic was focused on making only brutal death metal with primary influence taken from bands such as Venom, Possessed, Kreator and Destruction. It is this lineup that would later be featured on the release of their first, self-titled demo in 1988.

After Jack left in 1988, Paul took over vocal duties, Jason Gobel was added on guitar and and in 1989, they cut their second demo, entitled "Reflections Of A Dying World", consisting of four songs. All of the songs on this demo were of the speed metal/thrash genre, with even some punk elements incorporated within. This lineup soon began touring the south Florida area and bootlegs exist of them as far back as May of 1988. Soon after, Mark left the band, Tony Choy was added on bass and in 1990, Cynic released their third demo (also self-titled). This helped to gain them a large following throughout southern and central Florida, as well as their constant touring and cameo appearances in the south Florida area. This new lineup would remain intact until at least 1991.

At this time, the bands' influences were already starting to change. While they were still listening to contemporaries like Atheist, and were still inspired by seeing how "sick" some bands would get to express themselves, their technical, musical and creative abilities were growing, and consequently, they began listening to more technical forms of music. Their primary influences soon included jazz and fusion, such as Chick Corea and Allan Holdsworth, but also bands such as WatchTower and Frank Zappa. This change in technical abilities had already made its way into their songs as the band took a great leap forward in musicianship for their second and third demos.

By the early part of 1991, Cynic had evolved into a progressive speed/death metal type band, although the band themselves didn't really consider themselves to be death metal. The music had the technicality of progressive speed metal, with the brutality and vocal qualities of death metal. They cut a fourth and final demo in 1991 (financed by RoadRunner Records) consisting of three tracks. Two of these tracks would, in a drastically different form, make it onto their debut album. In April of 1991, Paul and Sean played on the new Death record (at the time), "Human", with Chuck Schuldiner and Steve DiGiorgio of Sadus. They described their relationship with Chuck as "very laid-back", and were able to help Chuck with the writing by giving him input, which had been missing on the earlier Death records. The result was a classic record, and Death even got some MTV airplay. At the same time, Tony Choy was filling in for the late Roger Patterson on Atheist's "Unquestionable Presence", also a great album in its own right, and guesting on Pestilence's "Testimony of the Ancients". Paul did some work on Master's "On The Eighth Day, God Created Master", and Jason worked with Monstrocity, playing lead on their "Imperial Doom" album. All of this guest work helped to enlarge the fan base for Cynic, making them, according to RoadRunner Records, "...the most popular underground act to never record an album."

Cynic was planning to record their first full-length album on the RoadRunner label after doing the Death record, then tour with Death and come home briefly before going on tour again for their own record. For unknown reasons, this didn't happen and they went straight into the Death European tour for the rest of 1991. Their lack of touring the states lead to a decline in their apparent popularity, at least in the band's eyes...

Cynic was now scheduled to go into the studio in October of 1992 with Scott Burns to record their debut album. Unfortunately for everyone (especially us!!), Hurricane Andrew destroyed Jason's house which also housed the band's rehearsal facilities. Their plans to record were put on hold until March 1993. Incidentally, this also interrupted Chuck Schuldiner's plans for the next Death release, "Individual Thought Patterns", for which Sean Reinert was his first choice as drummer. Chuck instead got ex-Dark Angel drummer Gene Hoglan to fill in. During this time, Cynic was working with ex-Viogression vocalist Brian DeNeffe. Also around this time, a track from Cynic was finally released on CD. "Uroboric Forms" appeared in demo form on the RoadRunner compilation "At Death's Door II" in 1992 with a note that Cynic's debut album would be released in May 1993.

May 1993 came and went and no album appeared. Tony Choy left the band to become Atheist's full time bass player and the band had to scramble to find a replacement. After going through numerous bass players (including Chris Kringel more than once), the replacement they finally settled on was Sean Malone, an employee of Morrisound Studios where the band had recorded their previous demos. After putting together the songs for the new record, they were finally able to record, and on September 14, 1993, Focus was finally released. With over two years since their last demo, Focus was a remarkabl

Members of Cynic

Past Members:
Paul Masvidal (Founder). Period: 1987 - 1995. Role: Vocal, Guitar
Side projects: Aeon Spoke, Death, Master, Portal
Jason Gobel. Period: 1988 - 1995. Role: Guitar
Side projects: Aeon Spoke, Monstrosity, Portal
Sean Malone. Period: 1993 - 1994. Role: Bass
Side projects: Aghora, Gordian Knot, Spastic Ink, Seal Malone, Spiral Architect, Anomaly, Clockwork
Sean Reinert (Founder). Period: 1987 - 1995. Role: Drums
Side projects: Aghora, Death, Portal
Tony Choy. Period: 1989 - 1993. Role: Bass
Side projects: Atheist, Pestilence, Solstice
Jack Kelly (Founder). Period: 1987 - 1988. Role: Vocal
Mark Van Erp (Founder). Period: 1987 - 1989. Role: Bass
Side projects: Holy Mother, Malevolent Creation, Solstice, Monstrosity


Demo: (1988) Studio: Selfreleased. Tracklist.
Lineup: Jack Kelly - Vocals, Paul Masvidal - Guitar, Mark Van Erp - Bass, Sean Reinert - Drums
Comment: It was previously believed by most that Jason Gobel played on this demo, however, this is not the case. Jason joined Cynic shortly after the release.
Demo: Reflections of a Dying World (1989) Studio: Selfreleased. Tracklist.
Lineup: Paul Masvidal - Vocal, Guitar, Jason Gobel - Guitar, Mark Van Erp - Bass, Sean Reinert - Drums
Demo: (1990) Studio: Selfreleased. Tracklist.
Lineup: Paul Masvidal - Guitar, Vocals, Jason Gobel � Guitar, Tony Choy � Bass, Sean Reinert - Drums
Demo: Roadrunner (1991) Studio: Roadrunner. Tracklist.
Lineup: Paul Masvidal - Guitar, Vocals, Jason Gobel � Guitar, Tony Choy � Bass, Sean Reinert - Drums
CD: Focus (1993) Studio: Roadrunner. Tracklist.
Lineup: Paul Masvidal - Guitar, Vocals, Jason Gobel � Guitar, Sean Malone � Bass, Sean Reinert - Drums
Comment: Paul sings the celestial vocals on the album and live. Tony Teegarden did the death vocals and keyboards for the album and the European leg of the tour while Dana Cosley (Demonomacy) did the death vocals and keyboards for the US leg of the tour.

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