“In a lot of newer metal bands, it’s become very cookie cutter, with this stereotypical singalong hook,” explains LePond. “The keyboards are so loud they’re as loud as the guitars, and a lot of it has become very poppy and commercially friendly in the process, losing that mean, nasty, biker kinda sound. I think that maybe a lot of the younger generation has just been not exposed to the true power of the metal riff, and it is my mission to educate them!”
Since childhood, LePond has devoured said-riffs for 3 meals a day, 7 days a week. Growing up in Newark, New Jersey, he became absorbed with the bass guitar after hearing the likes of Judas Priest, Saxon and Manowar before witnessing Kiss live, which motivated LePond to get gear and take music lessons. In 1999, he met Michael Romeo, who invited LePond to become the bassist for the progressive metal act Symphony X. Over time, LePond became known as one of the most skilful, heavy bassists in modern hard rock and heavy metal, yet since his school days, LePond always harboured a deep desire to recreate the impact of hearing blistering heavy metal for the first time.