We’re currently at a musical standstill, since the full-length “Wenn Leidenschaft wütet”, which is the concept album about Goethe’s book “Die Leiden des jungen Werthers” (“The Sorrows of Young Werther”) is completely finished. The focus is now on getting it released properly.
2. How would you describe the musical sound of the new material and how it differs from the older recordings?
Though we’ve been working for a long time on the concept album, and did a few compilation tracks in between, I wouldn’t really say that there have been a lot of changes. The only difference might be that the new material is slightly more abstract.
I find it hard to describe the overall sound of the material—it would probably fit the dark ambient genre best due to its electronic and dark, melancholic nature, although it often is quite light and gentle rather than heavy and smothering. This, combined with the violins, pianos and orchestral pieces on the one hand, and the use of slow, looming drum beats here and there create a sound that in our opinion doesn´t fit the standard dark ambient cliché.
3. I know that the band explores Goethe with the music, are there any future plans to explore any other authors and philosophers?
We had plans to work with one book per release, either from Goethe or someone else, but due to changes in both our lives it is unsure whether the project of 1774 will be continued at all after releasing the full-length album.
4. What is the meaning and inspiration behind the band name?
It is in fact quite simple. As I just said, we had plans to focus on more books than just “Die Leiden des jungen Werthers.” Initially, however, the entire project instead of just the first release was based on the “Die Leiden…” concept. We therefore chose the name of 1774, which is the year in which “Die Leiden…” was published for the very first time. Note, however, that there are two versions of the book: the initial 1774 version was later edited by Goethe himself before it was published again. Both versions are available nowadays and we’ve worked with both versions for the project, not just with the 1774 one.
5. Has the band had any oppurtunities to do any live shows or is this strictly a studio paroject?
We have had the opportunities in the sense that we’ve been asked several times to perform live, but 1774 has always been and will always be a studio project.
6. When can we expect new material?
Well, hopefully the full-length “Wenn Leidenschaft wütet” will be released in 2012. It’ll be a limited edition digipack with 11 tracks and the playing time will be just over 55 minutes. Some of the material that was already published as a free download (for example, by Kalpamantra) will be on this full-length as well.
7. On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of dark ambient?
I´m not sure whether all the response we had came from dark ambient fans, but it was overwhelmingly good. In fact, we haven´t received any negative feedback. We´ve also heard quite a few times that people actually had picked up and read “Die Leiden des jungen Werthers”. We feel that it’s great that our music has had such an influence on people and we hope this will continue.
8. Are there any other projects besides this band or is this full time?
1774 is far from full time, the pace in fact is very slow. Both of us are involved in more projects than this one and those often receive more priority as well. I, Hæresiarch Sr., am involved in a variety of extreme metal acts, most notably the black metal acts White Oak and Sea of Trees. As,. the other man in 1774, is involved in Sea of Trees as well but his main activities revolve around various kinds of electronic music. Primitive Puss is one of his priority projects.
9. What direction do you see your music heading into during the future?
This is completely uncertain. Even if we indeed will make more music after releasing “Wenn Leidenschaft wütet”, the style it’ll be in will depend on the book we’re working with. We have a few vague ideas of what books we could use, but nothing is certain. Chances are that a new book would be related to war, or more specifically, World War I, and that would obviously result in a more grim and violent style.
10. What are some bands or musical styles that have influenced your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
There aren’t any specific bands or projects that we use as an influence for our music. In fact, we don’t really listen to dark ambient ourselves. I think that bands or artists that one listens to a lot during a certain period will no doubt leave marks in the music that one composes in that same period of time, but nothing on purpose or that we’re specifically aware of.
I myself (H. Sr.) am listening mostly to black metal, neo-folk, Gregorian chanting and funeral doom these days. As. was unavailable to answer this question for himself, but his tastes generally are extremely diverse and range from (neo-)classical music to an array of modern electronic genres.
11. How would you describe your views on Occultism or Paganism?
I don’t think there’s much to describe here. My (H. Sr.) interests in occultism are limited to its relevance in and for philosophy. Philosophy and occultism have been related pretty much since philosophy emerged (which, depending on one’s definition, is younger than what I would call occultism), but the type and importance of the relationship for philosophy itself has always fluctuated. Consequently, my views on occultism are limited to an academic interest in the subject insofar it can contribute to my endeavors in philosophical territory.
In regards to paganism: this interests me mostly in the historical sense, but I am not knowledgeable about the subject and feel that it is outdated as a religion (as goes for most religions), and I question the integrity and relevance of the actions of many who call themselves ‘pagan’. This, however, is critique against those specific individuals rather than against paganism.
As., again, was unavailable for comments.
12. Outside of music what are some of your interests?
Philosophy first and foremost, as I am a philosophy student currently. Though I am interested in especially history as well, I hardly have enough time to do anything with this due to my studies and musical activities in other bands and projects. I guess you could say there aren’t many interests besides (my own) music and philosophy.
As., again, was unavailable for comments. Note, though, that as a conservatory student, music plays a very dominant role in his life as well.
13. Any final words or thoughts before we wrap up this interview?
Thanks for your interest in our activities. We encourage the reader to check out “Die Leiden des jungen Werthers” or “The Sorrows of Young Werther” by J. W. Goethe and to enjoy this literary masterpiece. For questions about anything at all, or if you wish to receive free downloads of our material, contact us at haeresiarch [dot] sr [at] hotmail [dot] com. Heil.
Free download 2010: http://www.mediafire.com/download.php?wvu97ysa87646x4
Compilation material: http://www.mediafire.com/download.php?z0ahcoxy1e5emxj