1066 THE WITCHING HOUR
Shot by Greg Holland
Model – Djalo Scobar
Omar Hraib started 1066 in early 2015 as an exploration of The Slow, The Heavy And The Strange. The brand’s aesthetic represents a combination of historical, musical and cultural influences spanning the Middle East to the Renaissance – creating synergy between ancient iconography and themes synonymous with metal and psychedelic subculture. More than a label, 1066 pays reverence to its influences on the monthly show ‘The Witching Hour’ on London’s NTS Radio. Ritual had a little catch up with him about the launch of his new collection of Tee’s and longsleeves and he kindly put together a playlist for the Ritual Mixtape series.
You describe 1066 as more than a label, what was your vision for 1066 and why is it important to create an aesthetic around the doom/psyche sound rather than just fashion for fashions sake?
When I started 1066 it was never really with the intention of starting a fashion brand. I’ve been hosting ‘The Witching Hour’ on NTS Radio for a few years now and have been making and selling tees the whole time the shows been going. At first I was operating under the name ‘Void’ and the project felt more like a merch stand for the show than a brand in its own right. As time went on and things started to evolve I was keen to establish an identity and aesthetic that I felt represented my own interpretation of the music and subcultures that inspire me. The aim was to create a platform to explore what I’m passionate about both visually and musically with the hope of creating something genuine. I run 1066 on my own and so far I’ve been responsible for every aspect of the brand, which can be pretty challenging at times but I feel that the D.I.Y element is what keeps it legit and perhaps not just “fashion for fashions sake”.
The 1066 shirts are really strong, we’ve been vibing out on them pretty heavily, what else have you been hearing back from the world?
Thanks, the response has been good so far. No one’s said it sucks, yet! I’ve had the opportunity to work on a few collaboration projects with NTS, which seemed to go down well. I’ve also have been running an ongoing project with my uncle for a while now, he’s an Arabic calligrapher who fled Syria when the war started. The project promotes the message ’Knowledge is worth more than gold’ which we felt was truer than ever at a time when so much propaganda is pushed around. I managed to get the charity War Child on board and we donated 10% of each sale to them to help children affected by the conflict. The response was great and it was really nice to work on a graphic that’s focused around a good cause. We released an updated version for the 1066 launch, which is still available from the online store.
Music inspires fashion and fashion inspires music and the wheel keeps on spinning in that respect, but how do you fit in with that and how do you differ from brands that adopt a music aesthetic to sell their wares?
The industry is heavily oversaturated and I’m sure there are a lot of brands that would say they are filling that gap. I just focus on the things that inspire me to do it in the first place and try to put that into what I make, ultimately in the hope that people perceive it as a genuine thing rather than another brand ripping on subcultures to sell stuff. There’s a lot of time spent in constantly searching for new music and its great having the opportunity to promote and share small bands with a wider audience. I think hosting the show has definitely helped add another dimension to the brand. When people get in touch with me to ask about music I’ve played, or to send over a promo its a nice reminder that it is more than just about selling t-shirts.
A doom radio is pretty niche, what’s the metal/doom/psyche scene in London like right now?
I think its a great time for metal/doom/psych music in London, its feels like there are more and more bands coming through all the time. Its also interesting to see such a mixed crowd at gigs especially with bands that have been going for a while. I guess with the internet and social media helping to expose people to new music it’s perhaps diluting the stereotypes typically associated with those genres.
What can we expect to see from 1066 in the New Year, any exciting projects you guys are working on at the moment?
Hopefully just continuing to keep it growing and moving forwards. I’m really keen to work on some more collaboration projects, it would be nice to branch out a bit and work with people outside of fashion too, so we’ll see what happens…