An Acoustic Sin celebrates their history

On Boxing Day 2010, Metro Moncton rockers An Acoustic Sin performed for the first time in almost a decade before a packed house at Moncton’s Oxygen Nightclub. Buoyed by the enthusiastic response given to them that evening, An Acoustic Sin undertook a few other shows throughout 2011, including an August performance at the Dieppe Kite Festival. And now, An Acoustic Sin is set to take the stage at Oxygen Nightclub once again on Monday evening in what just might become an annual tradition of celebrating the legacy of a band who, during their original time together, earned a rabid following throughout Metro. During their original time together, An Acoustic Sin sold more than 10,000 copies of their three albums before the group was abruptly brought to a halt in 2002.

An Acoustic Sin guitarist-vocalist Steve Leblanc says that while the group never became bitter enemies or anything of the like, the weight of working so hard for seemingly receiving so little had simply worn the quartet down.

“When you are in the middle of the situation, you tend to only see the bad side of things,” Leblanc says. “Deep down, I knew we had something good but it seemed as though we were seeing little in the way of results from all of the hard work we were doing. We simply arrived at a point where we felt it was time to move onto other projects.”

Even though An Acoustic Sin was not active between 2002 and 2010, Leblanc says that he was constantly asked by fans when they could expect the group to reconvene. The thought of getting back together to perform had occurred prior to last year’s celebratory return, however 2010 marked the first year that the pieces of the puzzle fell into place for the quartet.

“The time away from An Acoustic Sin made all of us realize the impact that the band had on people. How could you not feel proud about that?” he asks.

If Leblanc and his band mates Daniel Dupuis, Ronnie Leblanc and Richard Bourgeois needed confirmation that people did still care about the band, any question was laid to rest with their Boxing Day performance last year.

“We really couldn’t believe the response that we were given. It was so flattering and encouraging. It showed us that people truly cared about the band and what we did. It was a great experience. Going into last year’s show, I honestly wasn’t sure how things would play out. I hoped for the best and I got that and more.”

An Acoustic Sin frontman Ronnie Leblanc concurs with his bandmate’s summary, saying that he too was a little nervous about what their first show in almost a decade would yield in terms of both performance and the audience.

“Before last year’s Boxing Day show, I had been really skeptical about getting the band back together,” Ronnie says. “There was no doubt in my mind that we would have fun, I simply didn’t know what the turn-out would be like. But it was like in the time that we weren’t playing, our fan base had grown up but had introduced our music to a whole other generation of fans. The wheels kept turning even though the band wasn’t active.”

Stating that the group does not want to overexpose themselves to audiences, Ronnie says that he anticipates An Acoustic Sin keeping an annual schedule of six to eight shows.

“I think each of us in the band would rather play shows that are meaningful rather than trying to cram too many shows in for the sake of playing,” he shares.

Asked whether fans should anticipate any new music from An Acoustic Sin in the future, both Steve and Ronnie say that it is something that is regularly discussed amongst them although nothing is concrete.

“Right now,” Ronnie says, “I don’t know if we have enough time to work on a whole lot of new music. It is definitely still on our plates though. We have enough material that we could easily make another two to three records but I want to be sure that if we go down that road that it is going to be done properly.”

“We’re throwing a couple of ideas around,” Steve says, noting that the band has discussed going the route of releasing a number of singles rather than pursuing a full-length record. “I think it would be a lot of fun to go into the studio, bang out a song and just put it out there. It will keep the diehard fans happy, and let’s face it, we’d be happy too.”

Whatever the future may hold for An Acoustic Sin, it is evident in speaking with both Ronnie and Steve that they are simply thankful for being able to revisit the band as they wish (and as time permits) while still holding onto their dedicated following.

“When we were trying to build a career off the band, it was a lot of pressure, and I think a lot of the fun got lost,” Steve says.

“Incidentally, we are not trying to make this a career now and everyone is much happier. We came back to the band with a different outlook.

“The little things that bothered you when you were 25 years old just don’t seem all that relevant anymore.”

Article published in December 23, 2011 edition of The Times & Transcript