The story of 1860 dates back to 2009 when three members of the rock group The Telepathetics wanted to start a sideproject; a creative outlet for writing pop songs. When one of the three moved to Denmark for university, Óttar G. Birgisson and Hlynur Júní Hallgrímsson, decided to meet up regularly and write songs together.
Pretty soon they had amassed upwards of twenty songs and the songs ranged everywhere from cheesy ballads to lush jazz rock compositions. However, what all these creations had in common was an underlying folk pop element, akin to Simon & Garfunkel, The Band, Spilverk Þjóðanna, The Thrills, The Avett Brothers and Fleet Foxes combined with a hint of more popular rock such as Arcade Fire, Belle & Sebastian, Radiohead and more.
This sound seemed as good as any to pursue and these simple songs were then arranged for a folkrock band instrumentation. During this process it became evident that the band needed a third member and Kristján Hrannar Pálsson was added to the line-up early October, 2010. Kristján is first and foremost a jazz pianist but furthermore a gifted multi-instrumentalist and vocalist.
With Kristján onboard the group kept working on songs and arrangements and the decision was made to always record the songs on a camera-phone and upload them directly to the internet each night. Before too long they were being asked for CDs of the songs so the decision was made to record the songs professionally, and the fruit of that labor was released early september 2011. Half of the recorded songs are in Icelandic and the other half in English. In april 2012, three new members joined 1860. Jóhann Rúnar Þorgeirsson on guitar, Gunnar Jónsson on bass and Andri Bjartur Jakobsson on drums.