Johann Pätzold aka Secrets of Elements is a composer, multi-instrumentalist and producer from Rostock in northern Germany.
He wrote his first album, ‘Minds’, while he was in a mental hospital recovering from a nervous breakdown. Since, he has regularly been invited as a speaker at medical conferences in Germany to present his experience and introduce musical therapy as an alternative form of treatment for schizophrenia and depression.
In 2015, he participated in the compilation #Explorer released on InFiné, focussing on young talents. A year later, at the request of Alexandre Cazac, he re-edited and rearranged the initial 2010 classical recordings of ‘Versus’ and helped relaunch the project with Carl Craig, which was then released in 2017.
Pätzold is a “music activist” in the broadest sense. In 2014, he was the spearhead of demonstrations preventing the closure of the city’s historical “Volkstheater”, mobilising the local population and elected officials to save a theatre that is one of the last areas of expression in a predominantly conservative city known for having an active and violent far right. The theatre has become a privileged place for the artist to collaborate with local cultural actors of dance and theatre. The latest “Saturn Return”, developed in the midst of the pandemic in 2020, is a choreography by Lester René González, whose music is entirely composed by Secret of Elements and includes pieces from ‘Chronos’.
With InFiné, he released two EPs: ‘Monumentum’ (2017) and ‘Odesea’ (2018), both of which are heavily influenced by the migration crisis and the reception of Syrian populations in Germany from 2015/2016. Pätzold actively participated in the organisation of the reception of migrants with local associations. In 2016, he travelled south to actively save lives in the Mediterranean. He made several of those journeys thereafter.