Frankly, I don’t know even where to start. I’ll try to present here some facts and my own opinion on the subject. I feel that I’m obliged to make this statement since for the last couple of months there has been a lot hatred directed to one particular person - Bartłomiej Krysiuk. That’s not only not fair to him but also not true. Especially since the whole story of Batushka presented by Krzysztof Drabikowski is far from truth. But let’s start from the beginning.
I participated in the formation of Batushka. I am one of three people that really participated in the recording of the debut album “Litourgiya”. My name is Martin and I recorded the drums for Batushka.
First of all you should know that without Krysiuk Batushka would probably never see the light of day. It would have been a project buried deep in a computer hard drive. An unfinished idea like many others. Perhaps it should have stayed that way. I think that Bart’s vocals were crucial for the debut album. Drabikowski and I agreed that they would fit perfectly to the music so Krzysiek decided to ask him to record them. At that time we thought about bringing in another vocalist but his singing would not be consistent with the whole idea. You must realize that Krzysztof made most of the music for “Litourgiya” but he is not the sole creator of both the album and the band. I shall speak more about my involvement in the drums recording later.
Anyway the songs that made the album were written in a relatively short time. Batushka as you know it today was not a brainchild of Drabikowski, nor his life’s work, as he claims nowadays. Back then it was not a serious endeavour. A joke perhaps, or “something stupid” as he told me back in the day, but not an opus magnum of epic proportions. As far as I’m concerned I was not also seriously thinking about the music that was being made. Everything changed after we uploaded the first song online and the reception from the listeners was more than enthusiastic. Krzysztof told me then that it took him about 8 hours to write it. Even with the good reception we didn’t plan any live shows. Batushka’s goal was to release an album. And that’s it. Of course we needed Krysiuk to do that. Everything that happened later is the sole merit of Krysiuk. He took care of the CD release, bought stage equipment, guitars, costumes, contacted the promoters, started organizing tours and dealt with the proper management of the band. He took care of it all. After a few shows Batushka started the demand for new concerts was growing bigger every day. For Drabikowski, which he stated explicitly many times, the shows were “unnecessary”. He didn’t want to perform live. Even the groundbreaking tour “Rzeczpospolita Niewierna” alongside Behemoth was something that Drabikowski saw pointless. But Batushka performed more and more thanks to Krysiuk, who took on his shoulders the whole thing. You know the rest of the story and how many more shows Batushka played around the world. Long story short it was Krzysztof Drabikowski who largely wrote the first album but it’s success and the fact that this project that started as a joke became a full-time band is only thanks to Bartłomiej Krysiuk. Without him nobody would even notice Batushka.
I will not comment on the name of the band and the whole bicker about it. Who is the owner of that is for the Court to decide. But know this that the band didn’t become popular because of the music. There are many better bands than Batushka out there. But what makes Batushka so special is the whole atmosphere, the stage image, the performance, the vibe - and that’s only thanks to Krysiuk. The bands popularity was achieved by playing live and that’s not Drabikowski’s merit. It’s more of a joint success. Of course Krzysztof poses himself as a leader of the band now but from my perspective he was the leader only when he wanted to take other band members dinner coupons, or close the locker with booze for himself, or wait for him for half an hour at the hotel because he considered himself to be the star of Batushka. It’s unbelievable and I feel really embarrassed that I have to mention it. But it’s the truth. Drabikowski didn’t consider both Krysiuk or the band seriously. As the band grew in fame his Drabikowski’s resentment towards Krysiuk grew. That’s because Bart was in a way the real leader of the band and people associated Batushka with him not with Drabikowski. Krzysztof’s response to the bands growing popularity was that he wanted to stop performing live and wanted to pull out of the contracted shows. He thought the shows were “unnecessary”. Despite his destructive attitude the band continued to perform and deliver “Litourgiya” live night after night.
I almost forgot. As for the drums that I recorded there is a statement of Krzysztof’s that I need to correct. He stated in an interview for kultura.onet.pl that he “recorded” the outlines of drums himself. But it’s not true since he only programmed some dummy drum pads in a computer programme to help him record the guitars. He has nothing to do with the drums recorded on “Litourgia”. He even can’t play this instrument. I recorded the drums for Batushka’s debut alone. It was all very spontaneous. I didn’t prepare and didn’t exercise anything. I simply arranged it all in the studio during the recording session. I think that I had a major influence on the record and my arrangements top the outlines sent to me by Krzysztof.
Anyway, from my point of view it all comes down to this. There was no theft and nobody stole anything from Drabikowski (as he and his friends accuse Krysiuk). The “Litourgiya” era in the history of Batushka is a closed chapter. As far as I know the band will not perform these songs live anymore. Bartek Krysiuk already recorded the sophomore album in spite of Krzysztof’s stating that there will not be another Batushka album. I think that it’s quite natural for the band to continue with Krysiuk since his part in the success of both the record and the band itself is huge. How can he steal something that he largely created himself? You know that the band had a successful run in Poland, Europe, USA and South America. That and other achievements were possibly only thanks to Krysiuk. I know that there is a lot of bad blood around the band and many people are making false accusations following Drabikowski’s statement. Please note that these opinions are far from truth since nobody except the people who actually performed in Batushka has a slightest idea what really happened. I can’t stand those painful comments and lies that Drabikowski and his followers put online. That’s why I decided to make a stand and tell you how it really was from a perspective of a man that was a part of Batushka for years. Also please take that under consideration that this is the first and last time I will speak about this matter and I will not comment any further events.
Since April 2018 I’m not a part of Batushka anymore. I will not participate in the recordings from the band or on Drabikowski’s project. I have no interest in harming any side of this quarrel. I don’t want to discuss the reasons why I left the band but it was an unpleasant situation for me. But know this that after I criticized Drabikowski’s behaviour he removed me from the band by manipulating both the situation and Krysiuk. But that was quite normal for Krzysztof. The constant lack of respect for his fellow musicians, disrespectful behaviour towards the fans and clouded judgement were fine with Drabikowski. He didn’t care about the promoters and anyone that didn’t want to act as he intended. He thought of himself as the most important person and disrespected almost every musician that performed with Batushka (and I mean dozens of people).
I understand that what I wrote here puts Krzysztof in bad light but these are the facts. There is no intention on my part to tell you anything but the truth about the band and how I feel about the whole situation. Krzysztof’s reputation is the result of over three years of him behaving like a diva. I can speak only for myself but I also do know that the other musicians that performed with Batushka don’t want to participate in any online debates (which resemble more a circus than a normal conversation). But know that they stand behind Bartłomiej Krysiuk. The rest will stay neutral. What I said here is enough to make you question Drabikowski’s intention and statements. You read my statement and what I think about the whole situation. The rest is for you to decide.