Pale Mannequin are:
Who We Are
Pale Mannequin are four completely different characters who share a love for music full of emotion. Starting from the broadly understood prog-rock and art-rock, they invite listeners to the world of dynamic riffs, funky grooves, poignant vocals and melancholic melodies.
The band was founded in 2018 by multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Tomasz Izdebski, when he was joined by Grzegorz Mazur (guitar and vocals), Jakub Qba Łukowski (drums) and Dariusz Goc (bass). Today, the group has released three albums and played dozens of concerts all over Poland. On stage, they give their best, creating a unique atmosphere in the company of their mute mannequins.
Band history written by founder Tomasz
The idea of Pale Mannequin started in 2016. At that time, Kuba and myself were playing together in a doom metal act called Schema. Despite being a dedicated metal fan, I had started exploring and creating some less extreme forms of music. (I was one of many metal fans introduced to Porcupine Tree by Opeth with their Blackwater Park era albums – that’s where the ‘prog rock journey’ began for me. ;)) I quickly found out that this did not blend very well with Schema’s output. It all started with one song, and a few months later I had enough material to record an EP. That was a revelation for me – I still remember how happy I was ~30 minutes’ worth of songs, which were so completely different from anything I had done so far. I had these tracks to record, but then there was one problem – I had to play all the instruments myself! I didn’t dare show my demos to anyone – I was just too shy about it. Home recording at that time was becoming increasingly popular and accessible, so I bought a decent microphone and preamp, dusted off my cheap bass guitar and started laying down the parts – all guitars, bass, vocals, and samples were recorded within a week in my small flat in Warsaw. For drums I used a drum machine. After everything was mixed the final effect was very far from satisfactory – I really didn’t like how the drum machine ended up sounding on the final tracks and I considered my vocal performances not bold enough. However, the few people that listened to the EP really liked it and encouraged me to keep going with it. For some reason though, I started to really hate that EP and just couldn’t listen to it. I had learned so much in the process of recording it, I honestly thought I could now do much better. Therefore, I made the decision to write an entirely new album, and this time record it with real drums and a human touch.
So, I needed a drummer. Drummers are a rare breed when you’re trying to form a band. Luckily enough, I already knew one that might be slightly interested – it was Kuba from Schema. I asked him if he could record the drums and he agreed, which was a blessing for me – I had a drummer and felt nothing could stop me now! Kuba recorded all the songs fairly quickly and within a few months I had laid down the remaining instruments. I liked the idea that Kuba was much more than a metal drummer – he’s a freak when it comes to funk music and I was convinced that this influence would positively impact our output. We had the material ready for mixing, and it was around that time I first contacted Grzegorz. I already knew I wanted to turn my studio project (and suspected Kuba wanted to as well) into a band and needed a second guitarist and someone who could sing with me, as many of the new songs had vocal harmonies. I knew about that one guy whom years ago, I’d played a few death-metal gigs with. He drank a lot, was tall, had long hair and apparently was running his own company making video games – that seemed like a damn good CV 😉 (I also saw him at a Florence & the Machine gig once, which made him an even better fit!) I knew he was serious about music and when he agreed to join, I immediately knew Pale Mannequin was now on the right track. (Grzegorz actually contributed vocally and guitar-wise to the last song written on our debut – Lunatic Pandora.)
From that point on, things gained momentum – we began rehearsals and started looking for a bassist. Darek was the only person recruited via Facebook and he was the first person we auditioned. He had more experience as a musician than all three of us combined, and we were sold on the idea of him being the last member of the band pretty quickly. In late 2018 we had become a full band, and after a few months breaking-in at rehearsals, we debuted on stage in 2019 with several gigs. The rest is history. 🙂