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Interview: MENTAL

Originally Published: Friday, March 18, 2005
Written by: Michelle Olaya

This interview was did to Dan- Mental’s guitarrist before they were playing over here in Barcelona, so I hope you enjoy it.
 *Could you introduce the band and make a brief bio, please?
We started to come together towards the end of 2001, Greg, Derek and Justin had
jammed a few times before, and Greg and I had wanted to do a band together since
we met when we were little kids, so when I moved to Boston for school we got
things rolling. Mental is Derek on bass, Justin on drums, Greg on vocals, and
myself (Dan) on guitar.
*Tell us some about your releases…
We did two demos early on, then we put out the And You Know This 7″ on Lockin
Out in the winter of 2002. After we did the record release for that show Chris
Wrenn asked us to do a record for him and a few months later we recorded Get an
Oxygen Tank. A few weeks ago we recorded for a new 7″ thats gonna be out this
summer for tour

*and about the lyrics, who does write them?
Greg writes the majority of the lyrics, but Justin has written a couple.

*Your style remembering 80’S old school, which bands are your influence?
We all listen to a lot of different styles of music, but agreeable influences for us would be Bad Brains, Underdog, and Supertouch.

*How was your experience at Mental’s first show? any good memories?
Our first show was awesome. It was with the A-Team, Stop and Think, and a bunch of other great bands. It was right in downtown Boston, all you can eat ice cream and cake, and just a perfect first show.

*Tell us about the Europe tour, Is your first time that you are roading by Europe?
We’re heading over at the end of July for about 4 weeks, we’re doing most of the dates with Justice and Rise and Fall. We haven’t been overseas yet, so it should
be a blast.

*What could you tell us about the festivals on U.S.A, Which were the best and the worse fest that you had played?
We haven’t really played too many fests, but Posi Numbers is always a good time, last winter we did some smaller fests in Florida and California, which were also
really cool.

*Are your a straight edge band or anyone MENTAL’S member is it?
Yes, We are a straight edge band.

*Ok then, What is your opinion about kids who claim sxe but just for being cool? and What does it mean for you to be sxe?
I think its cool when kids get into straight edge, its a positive movement to be involved in. If people do it to be cool, whatever, I don’t really care. People always latch onto trends and get into things for the wrong reason, and they’re usually just along for the ride and won’t last, which is fine. I feel its more of a personal movement, not something you do to be a part of something. Its something I’m very serious about, but not something I flaunt or push in peoples’ faces. I’m not into that shit. I don’t care if someone is or isn’t straight edge. If you’re cool, then you’re cool.

*POSITIVE YOUTH CREW , How could you define this phrase?
Well, I think of the Youth Crew as a bunch of dudes from the late 80’s who were
in some pivitol straight edge bands.

*Tell us about your work on BRIDGE9 RECORDS, Do you think the label has helped you to be recognized outside of USA?
I think its been a positive experience doing a record with Bridge Nine. It definitely gets our music out to a lot more people.

*Could you tell us any funny/good and bad experience?
I could tell you a ton of good and bad bands stories but i’ll give you a couple quick ones. The worst thing that happened was when our van broke down about 30 minutes into the drive of our first tour. We ended up getting it towed, driving to the first show in Chicago in Greg’s station wagon, and super roadie/Manager AJ eventually met up with us in Detroit with a van and all our gear. Lots of funny shit happens on the road. When we were on tour with Crunch Time, random people would ask us if we were a traveling fitness team or a soccer team. It was really weird.

*Looking around the world, What can you say about actual worldwide situation?
Personally I don’t support whats going on and I think its sucks that so much is being wasted on this pointless endeavor.

*Could you named 3cd from classics and 3cd present bands that meanings so much for the hardcore scene
This is something that always changes, so for classics I’ll say Bad Brains-roir record, Gorilla Biscuits-Start Today, and CroMags-Age of Quarrel. Those are definitely essentials for any hardcore kid. As for recent stuff I’m into the new Desperate Measures LP, new stuff from Knife Fight, Annihilation Time has a new record coming out…those bands are definitely worth checking out.

Ok here is the end of this interview, Any last words?
Thanks for the interview, shout outs to the LOC, DM crew, and Get Real.-Dan

Mother, wife, small business owner. www.justbuttons.org

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