Fatal Conceit
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Fatal Conceit

Detroit, Michigan, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2020 | SELF

Detroit, Michigan, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2020
Band Metal Hard Rock




"Fatal Conceit break down their heaviest single yet, "Devil's Little Helper" - Interview"

For those unfamiliar, Fatal Conceit are a Michigan-based hard rock and heavy metal band that formed in 2020, but are currently on the rise. Now having shared two stellar singles, the latest being “Devil’s Little Helper”, they’re shaping a unique sound for themselves that’s an amalgamation of the band’s members' infinite influences and inspirations. Luckily for us, we spoke quite in-depth about the song’s creation, what’s on the way, and much more.

On the background of the track, it was actually written by a friend of the band named Hunter Grunwald in which it covers deep themes of “remorse, betrayal, and eventual catharsis”. The band itself is made up of Timothy David (guitar/vocals), James Balina (drums), Joe Blake (lead guitar), and Katie Kixx (bass/vocals). During our conversation with Timothy and Katie, they elegantly broke down the finer details on how this came together and how at the moment it’s definitely their heaviest song yet.

Now considering that this is just the band’s second single released, we’re particular fans that they’ve mapped out a plan for what’s next. Not to give too much away because we’d much prefer you check out the interview for yourselves, but we should certainly see some experimentation within their sound, and a slew of more singles to be released shortly. As long as they continue on in the same vein of these face melting rockers, we’ve got no choice but to continue being fans. Seriously, at just a tad over four minutes in length, they’ve capitalized on what they did best with “Takin’ Back the Name” and somehow one upped themselves.

For now while we patiently wait for more music, please go ahead and check out those important links below to listen, follow along, and of course to keep up with all major news on the way. Enjoy! - We Write About Music

"Own Your Power with Fatal Conceit's Single, "Takin Back the Name""

Plowing through the industry by way of Michigan, the hard rock/metal band and quartet Fatal Conceit leaves us with an empowering anthem of self-worth with their recent hit, "Takin Back the Name."

Comprised of Timothy March, Bruce Schafter, James Balina, and Nick Pavlat, the rocking quartet is truly on the path to greatness as they never fail to bring listeners into mind-blowing and exhilarating sonic experiences. Founded in 2020, Fatal Conceit has garnered excellent traction merely through its first year of releases.

Produced by Shawn Papineau at Dead Wing Recordings, Fatal Conceit's latest single, "Takin Back the Name," and accompanying music video serves all the power and might to take back what is ours. Touching on the song's concept, lead vocalist/guitarist Timothy Martuch stated, "This song is a defiant, anthemic declaration that seeks to make clear that no one gets to determine who or what you are."

Jumping into the single, "Takin Back the Name," the track begins with Fatal Conceit's cohesive and blistering instrumentals that send us into the heart of hard rock/metal. As lead vocalist Timothy Martuch makes his powerful vocal appearance, he sinks us into the depths of inner power through his anthemic lyricism that reminds listeners to seize the day.

Fatal Conceit has our feet stomping 6ft below the ground with their punchy and stimulating instrumentals, especially Nick Pavlat and Timothy Martuch's layered electric guitars alongside James Balina's ever-changing drum patterns and Bruce Schafter's thumping bassline. Ending the song with the utmost vigor, strength, and power, Fatal Conceit truly leaves us in awe as they command our attention from start to finish.

Catch Fatal Conceit's latest single, "Takin Back the Name," on all streaming platforms, and find the song's equally empowering music video on YouTube.

A warm welcome to BuzzMusic, Fatal Conceit. We can't get enough of the energy and intensity within your recent empowering single, "Takin Back the Name." How did the song's concept and inspiration come about?

Thank you so much for having us. We’re so grateful for your kind words. I have wanted to write a song that has to say what this one says for a long time, and while I’ve made a few attempts, they never really cut it. Anyway, as a starting point for this tune, I rather liked the aesthetic of those old blues charts. Back when I played bass in a jazz combo in college, used to play a bunch of tunes like that. All Blues from Miles Davis, Footprints by Wayne Shorter, Gershwin’s Summertime—those kinds of charts. I find a certain charm it's their simplicity, the singular form that just repeats throughout.

Could you break down your band's creative process when formulating your dense and heavy instrumentals, especially for "Takin Back the Name?" How did you want your listeners to feel after experiencing the hard-hitting instrumentals?

Ah, the process. Well, when I wrote this song, I had written the rhythm guitar part, the vocal melody, and an early version of the lyrics by myself in an acoustic setting. That was back on Thursday, August 27th of 2020. On the 28th, I started to work on tracking the demo, which was finished by that evening. The solo—which largely follows the melodic contour of the lead vocal part—was finished just a few days later. Finally, I presented the demo to the band and Shawn, our producer. Shawn worked with both the bass and drum parts on this song and processed the guitars and vocals as they were originally recorded. He really took this song to the next level. We want people to leave this song with velocity. Let this song be a launchpad to conquering the naysayers. The disbelievers. The toxic, sticky people who want you to be stuck like they are. “The Name” doesn’t even have to be a name. It can be anything taken from you that is intrinsically yours. Your value. Your strength. Your reputation. Your dreams. They don’t get to define you. They don’t get to take those things from you.

Who wrote the lyrics for your single, "Takin Back the Name?" Does your band allocate a specific member to tackle the songwriting process, or was this a collective experience?

While all members are welcome to contribute their own partial or complete songs and musical materials, I’ve been l really at the center of the writing process for the band. With very few exceptions. Once the first version of the lyrics was finished for this song, I took them to my dear friend, Katie Puga, for development. Katie’s an extraordinary creature. She’s primarily an interior designer with Ethan Allen, but she and I have worked together in music for years. I really trust her to be honest with me about the quality of my work. When she heard the demo, there were a few lines she recoiled at and immediately conjured EXCELLENT replacement lines, earning her a lyric credit on this song.

Is this your first time working with producer Shawn Papineau for your single, "Takin Back the Name?" Or is he a regular addition to your band's creative/recording process?

Shawn and I go way back. In 2014, I joined his band Oxal Pointe as a vocalist. Bruce, our bassist, was also in that band. That’s how I know him. That band was nuts, man. When Shawn had to move to Florida, that was sort of the end for that project and we all went on to do other things. Fast forward to 2020, Shawn’s hardcore band, Dead Wing, had just recently dropped a super heavy EP and a follow-up single. So anyway, Shawn sort of mentioned in passing that he was getting into music production and I asked if he wanted to work on our stuff. He’s been on the team ever since. Shawn has an interesting and eclectic background in music. He’s a ripping guitarist and drummer with some pretty solid bass chops. But he’s not just a metal guy. Shawn and I once played a wedding in a country band called “Pappy and the Crab Grass Band.” It was hoot! Anyway, his contributions have been extraordinarily valuable to the team and we’re grateful for his excellent work. Check him out on Instagram, @DW_Recordings. - BUZZ MUSIC

"Fatal Conceit come hot out of the gate on debut single, "Takin Back the Name""

After having been founded in 2020, Fatal Conceit have finally put forth their debut single, “Takin Back The Name”. Let us be the first to tell you, the wait was worth it! Read on for our complete look into the band and a review of the track as well.

Based out of Michigan, Fatal Conceit are a hard rock and heavy metal band founded by Timothy Martuch (guitar, vocals) and Bruce Schafter (bass). With the addition of James Balina (drums) and Nick Pavlat (guitar), Fatal Conceit are now the complete package that have shared their riveting debut, “Takin Back the Name”.

Seeing its release on May 7th, 2021, the band has also shared an accompanying music video with the single that has single handedly brought a whole new life to a song that we didn’t think could get better. We’ve linked it below, but please let us gush about our instant love for this song and the band behind it.

Lead man Timothy Martuch gave us a much needed background on the track in which he proclaimed, “This song is a defiant, anthemic declaration that seeks to make clear that no one gets to determine who or what you are. In a somewhat abstract manner, ‘the name’ that’s being referred to in this song is a stand-in for a title that’s been stolen/lost or a word that’s been used to hurt you or others”.

With a stunning production taken care of by Shawn Papineau at Dead Wing Recordings, the pairing of the producer and band has taken the band to unmatchable heights. Now we know that this is just their debut, but by the sounds of it, is going to be wildly difficult to top as the band continues to release new tunes. If anyone is up for the challenge though, it’s this group of talented musicians who we’re sure have been busy over the last year perfecting their craft.

The music itself is heavy, commanding, and daring in the best ways possible. The vocals surely set the tone at the beginning for what you can expect throughout, but cranked up on a set of high quality headphones will quickly prove that Fatal Conceit’s brand of heavy metal is doing a great job of reinventing the wheel. So much of hard rock and metal sounds “samey” these days, but they’re actively working to shake things up, which we always appreciate as listeners of all musical genres.

Seriously though, we couldn’t have been more dazzled by “Takin Back The Name”, which is why we wholeheartedly suggest you listen in as soon as humanly possible. Crank it up loud and let the music take you over, you won’t regret it! For all things Fatal Conceit, to listen, and to keep up with all future releases and information, please check out the following links below. - We Write About Music





FATAL CONCEIT is a Michigan hard rock and heavy metal band that was founded in early 2020. These rockin, wild Michiganders set out to create massive riffs and pounding beats with thought provoking, soul-crushing lyrics. The shredfest never ends with FATAL CONCEIT.     

Timothy Martuch
Hailing from Fenton MI, Timothy Martuch has had a unique and eclectic musical career. He studied formally at Adrian College, where he earned a bachelors in Music, and at the Academy of Art University, where he earned a Master of Fine Arts in Music Production and Sound Design for Visual Media. ​Educator by day, Shreditor-in-Chief by night.  Tim has performed alongside such names as We Came As Romans, Diamondhead, Asking Alexandria, ANVIL, Nonpoint, HEDPE, Marty Friedman of Megadeth, and more.  

Katie "Kixx" Puga 
Katie “Kixx” Puga is a force to be reckoned with. Her background in the music industry is remarkably diverse. Initially starting in the Detroit music scene as a manager in 2018 for a number of projects before having a brief (but extremely successful) run in her own solo project. In this project, she served primarily as front woman while managing. Kixx brings that experience to Fatal Conceit in spades. As far as personal/professional backgrounds go, Kixx wears many crowns. After departing the United States Marine Corps., this mother of two conquered higher education and used her two degrees to enter the world of interior design and became an extremely competitive professional with her company on a regional and national level. Kixx is something of a musical chameleon whose Apple Music shuffle would be enough to give even the most eclectic listeners whiplash. Her primary influences include New Years Day, In This Moment, Taylor Swift, Blue October, Sleeping At Last, and others 

Joe Blake
Most guitarists aspire to be good. Some guitarists manage to be great. Few would even be able to ascend to a place where they could even enjoy Joe Blake's company as an instrumental practitioner.  He may be the second left handed player to have joined Fatal Conceit but Joe is not second fiddle. In fact, Joe rarely ever was second fiddle, even having served as concert master in a number of orchestral ensembles.  In addition to his background in classical music, Joe has made contributions to a number of projects as a multi-instrumentalist. ​Contemporaneously, Joe is the creative force behind the mighty GELLING instrumental project and previously held membership in KESTO. Joe's "Big 4" is Megadeth, Metallica, Yngwie Malmsteen, and Johann Sebastian Bach.   

James Balina 
Basically born with drumsticks in hand, James started his musical journey at 6 years old. Since those days, James was a self-taught and natural time keeper, only taking up formal training in college. His fluency with the kit allows James to smash heads in a wide range of genres, from rock/pop music to r&b, jazz fusion, and funk, as well as gospel music in a church setting. James' influences include Larnell Lewis of Snarky Puppy, Canadian drummer Sarah Thawer, and Thomas Pridgen of The Mars Volta. 

Band Members