QUICKIE OF THE WEEK: A short interview with Filip Mieszkalski and Kamil Zieliński (Mentally Blind)

von Marko Jakob

Pix666: Hey guys. Thanks for your time. How are you doing these days, are you alive and well? How are the other guys of Mentally Blind?

Kamil: Hey there, we’re alive and busy! There’s been a lot of traction generated with the album release, which kept us going despite some crazy events and personal changes.

Pix666: What kind of music do Mentally Blind make and what have been the milestones in your band’s career so far?

Kamil: We don’t like putting labels on music but you can consider our recent album a modern take on metalcore. We try to blend in some electronic elements and melancholic parts with some more traditional metal approach that we grew up around for the past 20 years.

As for milestones, the release of our debut album Stage: Zero definitely counts as one and our recent tour with Decapitated would make a good one as well.

Pix666: What was the reason for you to become a musician?

Filip: I don’t think that there’s a single particular reason behind this. My dad was a street performer and I’ve been watching him play when I was little. This has surely pushed me to give it a try myself – I’ve grown to love it over time and I am certain that I couldn’t stop performing at this point. This is the main reason for me.

Pix666: You have released your debut Album ‘Stage:Zero’ in February 2021. How were the fans’ reactions?

Kamil: The reactions were outstanding! It seems that both our old and new fans that we’ve gained resonate with our vision behind the sound and message of this album and we’re very grateful to be able to witness that.

Pix666: Your band has been around for over 10 years – why did it take so long to finish the first album?

Filip: Those ten years were kind a journey. We started as absolute amateurs at fifteen years old and we had to learn everything from scratch. There was no mention of any album at the time. It was a time of constant learning, lineup changes, hardware upgrades and gaining experience. Only now I truly feel that we’re ready to manage this band at a professional level. That should answer your question I hope.

Pix666: You have also released video clips. There have already been almost 100.000 views on YouTube for each song.  Do you look at all these statistics – do you know in which countries Mentally Blind is listened most?

Kamil: Most of our following comes from our home country of Poland but we also seem to be gaining some new fans in the west, primarily Germany, UK and even the US. This is especially great considering that we’d love to play some shows in those countries as soon as the opportunity arises.

Pix666: Some weeks ago you played a concert in Wrocław. Please describe the feeling you have when you can finally go back on stage? Do you have any other plans for live performances in 2021?

Kamil: At the time of writing this we’ve already done 5 shows, 4 of which supporting Decapitated and it had a great impact on us as musicians for sure. We met some of our idols as well as many amazing people who shared the passion for music with us, giving us a huge boost of energy to keep going on our recent tour.

Playing live on stage is definitely an integral part of being in a band for the four of us and while we want to focus on making some new material this year, we’ll hopefully announce some shows in the aforementioned countries in the next few months.

Pix666: How much fan support has there been during the pandemic? Did many people buy your merch? What do you actually have on offer in the shop?

Kamil: We shared some amazing moments and many insightful conversations with the fans, band members and their crew which is absolutely invaluable but we’ve also had some people buy our CDs and tshirts.

We’re also fortunate to be able to gradually finance some of our upcoming expenses from the merch income, which will surely help us improve our performance even more. The shop is at www.mentalshop.com.pl and we currently have some tshirts, CDs, Guitar Pro Tabs, HELIX Presets and hoodies in stock but we’re hoping to throw in some new designs soon!

Pix666: What is the general situation with the metal scene in your home country Poland? Are there many fans, many events?

Kamil: The local scene seemed a bit stagnant for a while but we’re happy to keep seeing new bands emerge every once in a while. The number of shows and attendants are surely far from those pre-pandemic but in an odd way, being deprived from international tours appears to have gained local bands some more, well deserved attention.

Pix666: What dreams and wishes do you have for Mentally Blind for the next few years?

Kamil: We try to be realistic with our goals with the global situation in mind but we’re also hungry for bigger stages and we’re all hoping to play arenas in the future. Meanwhile, we wish to finish promoting our album Stage: Zero and keep re-defining our sound with new releases, hopefully collaborating with some other artists as well, so that we can expand towards different audiences.

Pix666: As a musician, you certainly spend most of your time creating music – but what else do you do in your free time when you want to get your mind off things – are there any interesting hobbies that you pursue?

Filip: I play some squash and I enjoy cinematography. I’m actually working as a video editor and I work on film sets, so I’m not sure if I can call it a hobby but it’s the closest thing I have when I’m not doing music.

Pix666: Do you have any other news, that you would like to share with the fans?

Filip: We’re about to premiere our new music video for XYZ, which is another single from Stage:Zero, so go check our YouTube channel and other socials not to miss it! Take care!

Pix666: Thank you very much for the interesting answers – Good luck with the album, have fun on stage and stay healthy!!!



photos © Mentally Blind and M. Bensdorff