Sad news in the metal world today, as Sean Malone, the longtime bassist for progressive death metal legends Cynic, has died. He was 50 years old.
Sean’s death was announced by Cynic frontman and guitarist Paul Masvidal, who posted a picture of Malone to his Instagram with the caption, “I learned today that Sean Malone has died. I am numb and grief stricken. He had a brilliant mind, a gracious heart and was one of the greatest musicians I’ve ever encountered. I know that this is a shocking loss for so many fans whose lives he touched with his artistry, as it is for me. Please keep him in your thoughts and listen to his playing to celebrate his life.”
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No cause of death has been revealed.
Sean joined Cynic in 1993, during the recording of their debut album Focus. When current bassist Tony Choy left the band, Malone was asked to step in, and his background in Latin jazz and bossa nova music helped the band develop their own unorthodox sound. Malone went on to form a strong bond with late Cynic/ex-Death drummer Sean Reinert, with whom he also played in projects such as Gordian Knot and Aghora, Malone has played on all of Cynic’s major releases, including Focus, 2008’s comeback album Traced In Air, and 2014’s Kindly Bent to Set Us Free.
This tragedy comes on the heels of Sean Reinert’s own passing in January, to which Malone himself paid tribute, writing, “I was luckier than most. Complete musical trust — especially between a bassist and a drummer — is a rare and precious thing. Rare, because it’s not something you find by looking for it. Precious, because some may go an entire lifetime without ever having experienced it. But I was luckier than most. Sean offered his trust during every rehearsal, every recording, and every performance we ever did, and it’s likely that I’ll never experience the same again. The truth is that we’re all lucky — lucky to have been alive while Sean Reinert was making music.”
Everyone at The Pit sends their heart out to Malone’s friends, family, fans, and collaborators during this extremely difficult time.
Words by Chris Krovatin