Borussia Dortmund twice hit the woodwork and wasted several more chances before squeezing past Augsburg 2-1 in the Bundesliga on Saturday to climb to second place.
"It was an intense game and it demanded a lot from us," scorer Brandt said. "We kept at it and that was important for us."
"But we should have scored a third goal to settle nerves. The way it turned out we were stressed until the 90th minute."
Augsburg initially struggled to deal with the Dortmund pressure, evident from their three yellow cards and the penalty they conceded in the opening 15 minutes.
But while the hosts may have had possession, they lacked precision and a killer instinct up front, with their top striker Erling Haaland still missing through injury.
Augsburg hung in there and snuck in a sucker punch before the break when Arne Maier's 25-metre shot bounced off the crossbar and into the path of Andi Zeqiri who had no trouble slotting in for the equaliser.
Dortmund needed a special moment from Brandt to retake the lead six minutes after the restart, with the midfielder finding just enough space to weave in a shot with his left foot.
Dortmund captain Marco Reus rattled the crossbar with a rebound shot in the 57th, and Thorgan Hazard should have done much better in the 66th when, with only the Augsburg keeper to beat, his shot bounced off the post and went wide.
But the win saw Dortmund move up to 15 points, one behind leaders Bayern Munich, who are in action against Eintracht Frankfurt on Sunday. Sensational Freiburg, unbeaten so far, are also on 15 following a 2-1 win at Hertha Berlin.
VfL Wolfsburg suffered a 3-1 defeat by visitors Borussia Moenchengladbach to drop to fifth on 13 points.