In September 1995, Rammstein revealed their debut studio album, Herzeleid. Produced by Jacob Hellner, the album showcased the now-legendary band in its early stages, when singer Till Lindemann was unsure of his craft and internal struggles slowly deteriorated the Herzeleid sessions.

We recently spoke with Hellner to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Herzeleid. During our chat, the producer revealed his first impressions of Rammstein as a listener and in the studio. “I liked the music, I liked that it was in German,” Hellner says. “Till was different… not so good, but different. Out of tune and insecure, but different. When I saw them live, I was like, ‘Ah ha! Okay, I’m in.’”

“Things that made the first album very complicated was the fact that I didn’t speak German and they didn’t speak English, except for Till. Till is the talented language man,” Hellner recalls. “We had a good pre-production, we had a good beginning of the production, but then things started to deteriorate. [The instrumental section of Rammstein] felt left outside of the process, which was probably true, because I said, ‘Listen, if I’m gonna do these vocals, we can’t have five or six other guys in the control room breathing down my neck.’ They agreed to let me do it, but they were really weary about all of this.”

Hellner also describes the democratic nature of Rammstein. To this day, Rammstein still discuss all aspects of their band with all six members present. “[It’s] what I call the never-ending Rammstein conference,” the producer explains. “They talk constantly within themselves about what they’re doing, why they’re doing it, what is right for them, what is wrong for them… they can talk about a guitar riff for days, they can talk about a synth sound for days.”

Watch the full story of Rammstein’s debut album below.

Rammstein will release the 25th anniversary edition of Herzeleid on Dec. 4. The new edition features an HD remaster of the full album for the first time ever. To pre-order the record, click here. (As Amazon affiliates, we earn on qualifying purchases)

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