Leather Synn is a Heavy Metal band founded in 2011. The band belongs to a movement which can be called as “The New Wave of Portuguese Heavy Metal”.
The band name was inspired in a project Xico “Steele” had in 2009 with Hugo Rattlesnake, which was simply called “Leather”. The original line-up failed and Xico, in 2012, started an idea for a new band with Zé “Rockhard” and Hugo “Rattlesnake” on Guitars, Victor “Silver” on Drums and Carlos “Manimal” Faria on Bass. The band changed its name to “Leather Synn” after completing the formation. This line-up recorded 4 tracks in the beginning of 2013. Those tracks were released as a 12” vinyl EP.
Leather Synn MKI fell apart right after the record release and live debut. The first one to quit was Zé “Rockhard”, simply because he had 3 bands and couldn’t handle them all, opting to leave Leather Synn in an amicable split up. Just in the eve of the recording of “Honour and Freedom”, Xico “Steele” moved to the UK, leaving its slot as a singer empty and Hugo “Rattlesnake”, who was living 400 Km away from the rest of us, also ended up leaving. The transaction from that initial line-up to what would be the Leather Synn MKII was smooth and seemed to bring a significant upgrade to the band both in terms of stability and musicianship. For the Lead singing position entered Eduardo Sanchez Cano, our first option, a talented vocalist, long-time friend and co-worker of Carlos “Manimal” Faria. For the six string department, the band recruited Alcides Pinto, a seasoned guitarist known for his work in bands like Alkateya and Curse, and Fábio Santos, a young virtuoso able to do everything out of a guitar. Although Fábio entered halfway through the recording sessions of the 7” single, he was fully integrated by the time the record was released.
That MKII seemed to be the ideal line up to start composing the debut album, and the future ahead of us looked bright, with a fantastic single reception, and the chemistry in the rehearsal room was great! But as the plane started to take off, out of the blue, we lost Alcides. Later on, Fábio also left to seek a professional career as musician willing to make enough income to become a full-time professional musician. We agreed that Leather Synn would never be big enough for him to make a living out of it and he moved on. That departure opened a revolving door of guitarists. From 2015 to 2019, we went through a painful process of constant line-up changes, bad options, internal convulsions, everything you can read online about how bands lose members and struggle to keep going, we had it! We used to say that we could already write a book, or film a VH1 “Behind the Music” episode!
When it comes to guitarists, we had everything: from lazy sods to hired guns, who came just to do a few shows, incompetent “guitar hero” wannabes, crazy dudes… it’s quite hard to remember all the guitarists we once tried though all those years, some stayed for a while, some came and gone in a blink of an eye. Almost 5 years of stagnation with lots of very low moments only cut here and there for some sporadic shows that made us believe that it was still worth trying to move on. Even with constant guitarist replacements, we manage to play a handful of great shows and even compose a few songs for that desired album.
If the guitarist seeking saga was not enough, in 2018, Victor “Silver”, our drummer from day one, had to be invited to leave the band. That moment remains in our minds as the lowest point in our history. Victor was not only a band mate but a dear friend as well, but we could no longer stand some of his behaviours as a band member, so we felt he had to leave. It’s hard to kick a guy out of a band, harder still when that band member is a very close friend, but it was something we had to do, it was the only way we had to keep this band going. We wondered: was it worth losing a friend for a band?