An interview with Grant Mohler, the lead vocalist of thrash metal band, Crushing The Deceiver.
Introduce yourself and tell us your role in Crushing the Deceiver?
- I’m Grant Mohler, I’m the lead vocalist of CTD and I also run our merch and book our shows.
What is your musical background and what inspired you to start making music?
- I’ve been playing music now for nearly 30 years. As far back as I have a memory, I wanted to have a band and be involved in making music.
What are your main musical influences?
- Definitely all kinds of hard rock and metal and all the sub-genres. My favorite styles would have to be thrash and death metal. My favorite bands are Testament, Forced Entry, DRI, Sacred Reich, Evil Dead, Heathen.
What is the history of Crushing the Deceiver?
- CTD has been around since December of 2016. We started off as just a two-piece and got a full lineup once we started taking off and got signed, etc.
You’re signed to Roxx Records. How did you get connected with them and how has the experience been?
- Roxx Records was one of many labels that showed interest in us in the early stages. We had offers from larger labels, but I’m also the owner of a restaurant and couldn’t be obligated to so many shows that the larger labels wanted from us. I love Bill and the relationship has been great. Couldn’t be happier.
Who do you see as your audience? Believers to be encouraged by message or unbelievers? Your lyrics are straightforwardly Christian. (Question from BTG writer, Jeremy)
- I want our music to reach people that aren’t saved yet. Although obviously tons of Christians like our music, and that’s great, I’d rather have non-believers come to Christ from something they experience at our show or listening to our music than playing in front of all-Christian crowds. I just don’t feel like that’s my calling. That’s what church is for. We are called to go into the dark places and bring the gospel.
You are the only Christian in Crushing The Deceiver. How does that dynamic work out and has it caused tension?
- It’s actually worked out great! More than just the Christian thing for my band-mates, they just like that we are positive and uplifting. There’s enough negativity out there and they support me 100 percent.
You guys are currently recording your sophomore record. How’s the process going?
- The whole album is written and we just need to tighten up the tracks and hit the studio. We have 3 songs fully done and getting ready to record the next 3. There will be 9 total.
What’s the concept of the upcoming record?
- It’s going to have some darker themes, but still in-your-face with the message. It’ll be exactly like what the title of the album is “Prophecies Foreseen”. Kinda about seeing everything unfold before our eyes.
- I’m curious about your use of the warrior/soldier imagery. Are we to be militant or is it symbolic and if so symbolizing what? (Question from BTG writer, Jeremy)
- It’s kinda open to interpretation. I believe in spiritual warfare and that there’s wars being fought around us 24/7 and we need to stay focused on God and be ready when the time comes.
You recently started a side-project with your brother under your last name, Mohler. Tell us more about that.
- So we have played music together for almost 30 years and with Covid going on and CTD wasn’t doing much, it freed me up the time to do Mohler as a side project. We may do more albums, but doubtful to ever do shows. Just something fun for both of us because we love doing music together.
What are some of your favorite Christian metal bands and what are some of your favorite recent releases?
- I love War Of Ages, The Crucified, Phinehas, Consecrator, Taking The Head Of Goliath, Abated Mass Of Flesh, My Place Was Taken, Brokenflesh. My favorite recent release is from Mohler. If you’re not a fan of what you’re doing, you should probably not be doing it. Hahaha
How did you become a believer? Were you raised in a Christian home?
- I grew up going to Seventh Day Adventist church and it honestly made me hate going to church. I found a great church home at my current church that I’ve been attending now for almost 17 years.
Do you have an affinity towards a certain branch of the Christian faith?
- No, not really.
What is your favorite book of the Bible and why?
- I love Romans and Revelation. There’s just lots of promise in both books of reassurance that God is with us and will see us through it all.
Do you have a favorite moment of fan interactions on tour?
- Oh man, too many to mention. I love when people share stories about their nonbeliever friends that love our music and give Jesus a chance because of it. When I get to pray for someone or have someone pray for me. When people come up after our performance and just say how awesome it was and what a good time they had. It’s ALL just so amazing and fun!
If you could collaborate with any musician, who would it be?
- It would for sure be my all-time favorite musician, James Murphy.
Besides the upcoming album, what are your plans for the near future?
- Definitely finish this album up is the top priority. After that, play as many shows as possible in as many new places as possible. Hopefully even some little mini-tours (week-long or so).
We’ve come to the end of the interview. Thanks for taking the time to do this. Any final thoughts you’d like to share?
- Thank you for your time [and] interest in me and my band. Thank you, God, for giving me my talents of music and getting to share them with so many people. I truly love all of our fans. We hope to see you at some shows very soon. God bless!