Interviews: Illusion Of Fate

On this new occasion, we have had the opportunity to interview the Melodic Blackened Death Metal band Illusion Of Fate from the USA. Check out this band and follow them on their FACEBOOK PAGE.

1. Where did you get the idea for the band name, did you plan it or come out just like that?

Hayden Crownover, Guitar: Our original drummer came up with the band's name. He came up with it one day and we were like that sounds cool. And that’s pretty much it.

2. Why did you want to play this genre?

Bryan Bykowski, Bass: Initially, I was drawn to metal because it had a darker edge that stimulated my wandering, imaginative mind. When I picked up bass guitar at 15, once I had a grasp of the basics, I wanted to create my own songs. In a way, it felt as though I was giving back to the music that had been such a poignant part of myself for many years.

Hayden Crownover: It’s what comes naturally, I mean we all love black metal and death metal. So combining the two seemed like a no-brainer. Adding the symphonic and melodic elements really helps separate us from the crowd. And again it’s what we all love, we all love big orchestral parts, catchy hooks, and melodic phrases. It’s the music we all really want to make. 

Austin Vicars, Drums: Girls didn’t like me in high school

King Morbid, Vocals: I've always loved the dark and aggressive atmosphere of the subgenre.

3. Did you know each other before the band was formed?

Bryan Bykowski, Bass: King Morbid, and Hayden are both friends of mine from when I was a teenager, yet. Hayden and I have collaborated on music together over the years, but my joining Illusion of Fate back in late 2020 opened up the first opportunity to work in a band together. Austin is now like a brother to me, despite having only formally met him in the spring of 2022.

Hayden Crownover, Guitar: Bryan, King Morbid, and I all knew each other from high school, Austin is the odd man out, we met him about a year ago now. Actually through an online dating app. But actually, we met through a Facebook group where we shared music with each other. Then we worked on some stuff together. And I eventually asked him to come in and try out for Illusion of Fate, and that’s that.

Austin Vicars, Drums: I joined the band late but Hayden and I had worked on a couple side projects together which eventually led to me joining IoF! 

King Morbid, Vocals:  Hayden, Bryan, and I go way back. Austin is our newest member and he just fit right in.

4. Each band member's favorite band?

Bryan Bykowski, Bass: My all-time favorite, if I had to decide, is Iron Maiden. However, my favorites are in constant rotation, and narrowing it down to one can be a task.

Hayden Crownover, Guitar: I can’t speak for everyone else. But bands like Dimmu Borgir, Children of Bodom, Rotting Christ, Cradle of Filth, Allegaeon, Behemoth, Dark Tranquility, Aborted, Cattle Decapitation, Moonlight Sorcery, Opeth, Rivers of Nihil, Septicflesh, Disentomb, Stormkeep, Unleash the Archers, Wormwitch, Gatecreeper, and a lot more.

Austin Vicars, Drums: Between the Buried and Me, Green Day, The Black Dahlia Murder

King Morbid, Vocals: Whitechapel if I'm listening to metal, otherwise The Cure is on a constant rotation. 

5. Who or what inspires you to write songs?

Bryan Bykowski, Bass: Dichotomy. The depths of the imagination that initially inspired me as a listener, I am inspired by the creation of my own music. Any art that contains that balance between beauty and darkness is what stirs my own emotions and dazzles my mind’s eye.

Hayden Crownover, Guitar: So many bands inspire us, it’s hard to narrow it down. But we’ve all been musically inclined from a very early age. Speaking for myself, it’s something that I just feel the need to do, as corny as it sounds, it’s what I feel my soul purpose is. I’m not good at much else, but that’s fine. Because this feeds the soul. 

Austin Vicars, Drums: I just love playing drums, any sort of emotion positive or negative I can channel into my drumming so it just depends on the day and how I’m feeling leading up to playing.

King Morbid, vocals: Horror Stories, Fantasy Fiction, Anti-Hero stories, Cinema.

6. Where was your last gig?

STUDIO 301 Wisconsin, with our very good friends in Soul Riven and Want of Sin.

7. Where would you like to act?

Hayden Crownover, Guitar: There are so many artists I want to collaborate with and expand upon our sound in different and unique ways. But for the sake of narrowing it down, I would love to work with Dave Otero of Flatline Audio in Colorado, he is easily one of the best producers in the game right now, and everything he works on sounds better than the last.

8. Whom would you like to feature with?

Bryan Bykowski, bass: If I could feature with anyone on our music, it would be Dan Swano producing. The breadth of his work in the studio is vast, and I have been actively consuming any album he has had a part in for as long as I can remember.

9. Whom not?

Austin Vicars, drums: I definitely wouldn’t want anything to do with casket robbery, that’s for sure. (SARCASM)

10. Have any of you ever suffered from stage fright? Any tips for beginners on how to beat that?

Bryan Bykowski, Bass: Strangely enough, I have never suffered from stage fright. There are very few places in the world where I feel more at home and at ease, than on stage. However, the moments leading up to any set can be the most challenging for me, to get through.

Hayden Crownover, Guitar: I do, practice, practice together and on your own time. I always feel a lot more confident knowing that even if I make a mistake, it will be outshined by the musical proficiency that my bandmates possess. That and meditation, sometimes if I’m feeling nervous before a show, I do a bit of meditation to calm the mind.

Austin Vicars, Drums: Prepare as much as you possibly can before the gig and play out as much as you can in general. Repetition in the practice room and onstage is key. 

King Morbid, Vocals: I was terrified at first. I would puke before shows because of nervousness. It was rough…best advice I have is to just take it out on stage. Get mad, get intense. High energy will help keep your performance in line. Eventually it becomes muscle memory…Oh and make it look cool. If you make any mistake look cool, people forget that you messed up.

11. What bands have inspired you the most?

Bryan Bykowski, bass: Different bands have resonated with me the most at different phases in my life. I’ll go back to that word again, dichotomy. Any band that has demonstrated the contrast between darkness and light is always what renews my love for extreme music. Bands such as Cradle of Filth, Emperor, Ne Ovliviscaris, among others exemplify this in metal for me, but so too do musical acts like Dead Can Dance. Although if I were to go back to the beginning, The Beatles were actually the very first band that inspired me to play music, at the age of 7. Music just inspires me, continuously.

12. What's the weirdest thing a fan has ever asked you for?

Bryan Bykowski, Bass: He did not ask, but I did have one young man do a demonstration of his vocals, designated specifically for a project that he described as a synthesis of depressive black metal and dubstep. I was flattered, although the demonstration went on for a very long time, and now I wonder if he recited absolutely everything that he had. 

King Morbid, Vocals: I haven’t gotten asked anything super weird just yet, I’m waiting for one though._Hayden Crownover, Guitar The fans think I smell bad and don't talk to me.

13. What do you think of your fans?

Bryan Bykowski, Bass: Each of us could not begin to express the gratitude we have for every single one of you who has bought merch from us, seen our shows get lost in our music, or even went out of your way to just check out our music online. You are the very lifeblood of Illusion of Fate, and we wish we could meet and properly thank every single one of you.

Hayden Crownover, Guitar: I love our fans! They are simply the best, everyone who has bought a piece of merch from us, or gotten lost in our music. We all thank you, sincerely from the bottom of our cold rotten hearts.

Austin Vicars, Drums: My fan sits to the left of my kit and keeps me cool all show long, I love it!

King Morbid, Vocals: Our fans are the best. They keep us going. If it weren't for them, we wouldn't be able to do this and we love how down with us they are. There are fans and then there are our fans.

14. What do you think of our site?

Hayden Crownover, Guitar: I think it’s really cool, I always love webzines that support underground metal.

15. Something to add?

King Morbid, vocals: Stay true to yourself, never stop being inspired, and continue striving to be better. Thank you, all of you-Bryan Bykowski, Bass Work harder.

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