Get To Know French Metal Band WeaksaW – Interview With Leo Sendra

Derek Jones / Photojournalist

-Could you tell us a little bit about the origins of WeaksaW? How did you guys get started?

WeaksaW was born in 2008, in Montpellier, France. Leo (guitar) and Bryan (drums), who were previously playing in a ska-reggae band (oh yeah, you’ve read that well !), decided to play something a little more brutal. Then Tristan (singer) and Charles (bass) joined the band, and I came in a few months later to complete the definitive line-up, which has never changed

– What is the meaning behind your name?

It’s a legendary tale about two young males, slightly drunk after a Dream Theater show, who decided they needed two “W” in their band name, a “K” in the middle, and a bunch of vowels in between to make it sounds cool. And there you go, “WeaksaW” was born. We later added the roots to the original logo, and it became our trademark. It doesn’t mean anything, it’s short and we’re the only one on Google, so we kept it.


– On April 12th, the Lyric video for the song Storyteller was released. The video contains some really powerful imagery. It’s a really brutal song but more importantly I feel like it has a message. For those who have not seen it, could you talk about the message behind the video? Who directed the video? Was the concept something you came up with as a band?

There is no real messages in Storyteller, we just wanted to show the consequences of excess and abuse of power (genetic modification, war, political hypocrisy…). Tristan did all of the video himself, So congrats to him ! We really love it and it is one of my favorite tracks from The Wretched of the earth , because of its non-typical-metal-shit structure. We don’t have one concept, just digging the dark and blurry stories of the past and present of humanity… We are NOT a political band.

– What do the letters on the girls hat stand for and what language is that?

It’s from a kickass-dark-creepy clothing brand : Fuscare (http://store.fuscare.com) It’s a sort of runic script. Tony, the boss, is a friend of us.He also did our sick promo pictures!

-What are some of the challenges you have had to face trying to establish a following in the music industry?

Just to survive as a “rock band” . We really play the music we want to. No dirty business inside. We have no  special connections , it is a hard daily job. Just booking, promoting the band. Erwan and Coralie, our singer’s girlfriend, do very hard work on it.

– According to your website, it says that you have maintained the same lineup since you began in 2008. Thinking back on all you have been through as a band up to this point, What would you say is your proudest achievement ?

Man, just…stay together! I think it is more than friends or family. I feel this band like an entity (Matrix inside) : this unique experience is the sum of our lives achievements. We don’t regret anything we did. I mean, do you know a lot of french bands from the dirty south of France who came to Florida, with a legend like Mark Lewis (Trivium, Chimaira, Devildriver) at Audiohammer Studio, to record an album?  I am very proud of our work, with all humility and the will to do better than our past work in the future.

– If you had the ability to go back in time, what advice would you give yourselves when you were just beginning as a band?

Slowly bpm. Thank to the drummer and the guitarists man !! (laughs). Seriously, as I said, we don’t regret anything. Of course our old musical material sounds young and immature, but it is an essential step in the artistic life of a musician.

– Speaking of going back in time, your 2013 EP “James Huston Jr” is considered to be a concept album.. What was the concept behind the EP and does it have anything to do with a dead WWII Pilot?

Exactly. It is about the past life memories of James Leininger. We just love to tell dark stories. It is a creepy story about reincarnation : Leiningerhad nightmares about being a WWII pilot who died after his plane crashed into the ocean… Erwan wrote the story from the different points of view (the child / the pilot)

-In 2016 your album The wretched of the Earth was released by Lifeforce Records. What is your favorite song from that album to perform live? What is a typical “Weaksaw” show like?

My favorite song from Wretched to perform live is undoubtedly “Josh”. Love the riffing and the feeling on the chorus, the progression of the verses, and the death part at the end. A typical show is a show with a loooooooot of gin tonic and naked people everywhere ! It’s a  show with a lot of energy and fun on stage, in front of 10 or 100,000 people.

-Where do you hope to be as a band in the next 5 years?

A band without the “metal” cliché on the head. But with brutal shit inside. We choose the hard way! (Laughs)

– When you guys aren’t performing and practicing. What do you like to do for fun?

I’m really into video games and books. One of my main influence in the composition is Bioshock and Dark Souls, pure gems. I am reading The Passage  by Justin Cronin, it’s an amazing story. We like dark movies, especially The Blair Witch Project (the song «Josh»… see the movie !) and Aliens («XYY»).

-Where can fans keep up to date on latest news and music from WeaksaW?

Simply on our Facebook page or our website – www.weaksaw.com

 

WeaksaW is:

Leo Sendra : Guitar –
Bryan Tronquet : Drums –
Charles Villanueva : Bass –
Tristan Haillot : Vocals –
Erwan Billon : Guitar