What's all this fuss about?

Latin lyrics in Heavy Metal music are a common phenomenon. The darker the music, the more evil the band wanna be. What's better than using an old, mysterious, hardly understandable, cryptic, medieval and therefore almost satanic language? Unfortunately bands seldom know how to use this language properly. So, instead of evoking the demons of the realm of evil, they just evoke a hop-frog. Clatu verata nicto! - The most of you know what happened after this wrongly spoken spell.

Normally, two questions are the result of the fact that you've just read a latin phrase:
- What does it mean? (almost everybody)
- Is it correct? (just a few latin aficionados)

This page doesn't want to make fun of mistakes in latin lyrics. I wanna answer the first question to everybody who is interested. The second question is just for myself or for the two or three weird guys out there or for bands which are thinking about using a latin phrase as well. You can contact me if you want.

Sonntag, 12. Januar 2020

Swallow the Sun - Lumina Aurea

Swallow the Sun - Lumina Aurea (2018)

As you surely know, this EP contains a single song in which guitarist and band leader Juha Raivio comes to terms with the death of his girlfriend. She died of cancer in 2016. It's therefore a very dark and ambient track. Latin Gregorian chants and latin lyrics - spoken and sung by Marco Benevento (The Foreshadowing) - play an important role.

The song reminds me of old myths in which dead bodies can/ has to cross a river in order to reach the underworld or the promised land. In ancient Greece mythology this river was called Styx, the ferryman's name was Charon and the underworld was called Hades). But there are other legends as well, I think the great CD "Saivo" by Tenhi deals with this topic as well. The cover also shows a boat and mysterious figures.

*** edit ***
Recently, I've got some help from a cool guy who sent me the lyrics (as you can see in the comment section). So let's see what I've got and let's fill the gaps:

The motto which is shown at the end of the video is 
mors fortior quam vita est, - death is more powerful than life,
amor fortior quam mors est. - love is more powerful than death.

Lumina aurea - golden lights ("lumen" is not only "light", but also the ability to see and the energy/light that shines as long as you live)

Gregorian chants start, which I don't understand

illic ubi olim meum cor erat - there, where once my heart was
in abysso lacrimarum acrium- in the abyss of bitter tears
saxum iacet illic - a stone lies there.

unde tenebrae numquam possunt excedere - from where darkness never can leave
nec iam lux penetrat. - and no light never penetrates.
omniaque requiro - (not sure) and I ask for/ demand everything
in me imprimuntur - (not sure) in me they are imprinted/ engraved
sidus argenteum matutini - the silver star of the morning
omnia in me signata sunt
- everything in me is sealed

Ferte mihi capita daemonum omnium - Bring me the heads of all the demons,
Quae feram ubi vere tenebris sunt- which I'll carry where really darkness is.
vos non timeo, - I'm not afraid of you,
nam vos iam persaepe vidi - for I have very often seen you

ac vos nihil eratis ad alam nigram et cor albumand you've been nothing to the black wing and the white heart -
(this construction I don't understand. If "eratis - you were, you've been" is correct, then the direction "ad alam - to(wards) the wing" doesn't fit well; if "erratis - you err, you've erred" is correct, then "nihil - nothing" doesn't fit well)

te procul ab pseudoprophetis - You, far away from false prophets
quorum verba cava sunt - whose words are inane
per cor meum per has portas nocte - through my heart, through these doors in the night
portavi te donec lacerti vacui -You I've carried
donec lacerti vacui te requisiverunt - until the empty muscles required you (?)

te ademptus et ereptus sum - I'm snatched and carried away from you
nunc denique omnia templa combusta sunt - now finally all temples are burned down
incensa procellis et noctis tenebris - set on fire by attacks an by the darkness of the night

de nebulis in terram cecidimus - Out of the fog we fell to earth.
abiecti longe Eva atque homo - Eve and the Man (are) put down far away
de illis spei turribus ardentibus - from there burning towers of hope
qui portus erant usque ad spiritum extremum - which were the harbours until my last breath.

Gregorian chants which I again don't understand

Nunc et usque ad horam ultimam temporum te confidebam, - Now and until the last hour of times I've trust you
et te semper confidam.
- and I'll always trust you.

Te per illud flumen nigrum secutus sum - Through this black river I followed you
Quod fluit usque ad fines terrae - which flows to the end of the world
Sulcos aquae aureos sequens - following the golden furrows of water,
Qui e primis digitis tuis effundunt. - which rise from your finger tips.

canite mihi, daemones - Sing for me, deamons,
nam vos non timeo. - because I don't fear you.
Gladios vestros cepi - I grabbed your swords
et vos mihi submittitis et luci eius - and you bowed to my will and to her light.
Etiam redis ad meos amores, sidus aureum - Also you, silver star, return to my love

Armor, deorsum per flumen - The weapon, going down through the river,
ita puncto tempore - so at one moment,
ut lux pulchritudinis tuae - like the light of your beauty
domum tristem illuminat. - illuminates the sad house.
Iam lacerti vacui mei te requirunt, - My empty muscles already require you,
donec iterum conveniemus - until we'll meet again
in insulam, meus amor, in insulam - to the island, my love, to the island.

Interim ut Eva et homo longe abicierum - Meanwhile, like Eve and the man, put down far away (the form "abicierum" isn't a correct one)
in itinerem aureum te sequor, meus amor - on the golden way I follow you, my love,
in itinerem aurem per aquas nigras - on the golden way through black waters
vectus imagine illarum avium noctivagarum - driven by the image of those night birds
in itinerem aurem, meus amor. - on the golden way, my love.
(last comment on the grammar: "in itinerem" is wrong, because "iter - the way" has a neutral gender, therefor the accusative is also "iter". Also, I would have build the sencence differently: "to follow" has two additional informations: "whom?" and "when/ where/ where to"? First, "te sequor - I follow you" is correct. "in iter aureum" indicates the destination: "towards the golden way/ path". To say "iter aureum sequor - I follow the golden path" would be correct as well. But here, the author combines two accusative objects - this is what I doubt. I would prefer the ablative "in itinere aureo" to express the way/ method on which or with which he follows her.)
In general, this is a beautiful and fine written text and also a very sad and personal one. All I wanna say is:

Cara Aleah, ubicumque requiescis, velim requiescas in pace. Terra tibi levis sit et levia sint cordia eorum qui te amaverunt et amabunt. Luctus et maestitia numquam cor amantium tam fortiter tenere possunt quam manus hominis qui vere sentit. Cara Aleah, montes et terrae et pratia et flumina tibi aurea sint! Serena diem exspectes in quo die tu et amor tuus coniuncti eritis!

Freitag, 10. Januar 2020

Mayhem - Deamon

Mayhem - Deamon (2019)

Well, there is a Norwegian black metal band called Mayhem. I guess some of you have already heard of them. They say that they are quite famous - don't know... Ok, Mayhem are bloody famous, but not for their Latin skills. They didn't much here in 2019 either.

The song title Agenda Ignis means The agenda of fire.

The song "Malum" contains Latin lyrics:

Mors certa hora incerta - death is certain, the hour uncertain
Daemonem liberta - Free the deamon! (The imperative "free!" means "libera" in Latin, "liberta" isn't a correct form)

Mens mala - Evil sense
Animus malus - Evil soul
Ab infernus sulus - From infernal soil (this is what I guess. "sulus" doesn't exist. "solum" means "soil". The preposition "ab" needs the ablative case which would be "ab inferno solo")

Daleo perdeo extinguo - ???, I destroy (correct: "perdo"), I exstinguish
Malum magnum excito - I evoke the big evil
Daleo perdeo extinguo - see above
Malum magnum excito - see above
Convoro lucem - I devour light.

Mors certa hora incerta - see above
Daemonem liberta - see above

Daleo perdeo extinguo - see above
Malum magnum excito - see above

Diabolicus fatus - Diabolical fate (correct: fatum diabolicum)
Purifies ad crucem - ??? to the cross (maybe they mean "purify")

Adlecto necto - ??? ??? (no existing words)
Mortem vesto - ??? death
Impetus excitus - called attack (?)

Daleo perdeo extinguo - see above
Malum magnum excito - see above

Well, the majority of the phrases are ok, but I have no explanations for some words which haven't anything in common with Latin words.

Negator - Vnitas Pvritas Existentia

Negator - Vnitas Pvritas Existentia (2019)

The German black Metal band "Negator" has recently released their newest record. The name of the record as well as some titles are in Latin, and there is also a whole song written in Latin - so there is some work to be done.

First, the titles:
  • Vnitas Pvritas Existentia - unity, purity, existence (To write "v" instead of "u" maybe echoes Roman insciptions. It's easier to carve a "v" than an "u")
  • Sanguis serpentis - blood of the snake
  • chaire phôs (ancient Greek) - hello light
  • Ritus sex - Rite Nr. 6
  • Regnum spiritus immundi - the reign of the impure soul/ spirit
  • Et verbvm caro factvm est - the word made flesh (The song starts with the Latin word "oremus" which means "let us pray")
And now the lyrics of the song "Ritus sex":

Ex ocvlis lvciditas, - Out of the eyes lucidy
ex ocvlis obscvritas! - Out of the eyes darkness
Ex anima laetitia, - Out of the soul joy
Ex anima maestitia! - Out of the soul grief
Te libera! - Free yourself!

Sic sine caritate es, - So you are without charity
et sic es sine odio - and so you are without hate
Evince te, sic transit spes, - Overcome yourself, so hope passes
sic transit desperatio. - so passes desperation
Te libera! - Free yourself!

Solacivm et veritas, - solace and truth
mendacivm et vanitas - lie and vanity
inaniter svnt. Tempora - are inane. Overcome
evince atqve spatia! - times and space!
Te libera! - Free yourself!

Segnitiam, svperbiam - Indifference, arrogance
et devotionem abice. - and devotion throw away.
Affectationem etiam. - Also affections.
Ab omnibvs libera te! - Free yourself from everything.
Te libera! - Free yourself!

Religionem fidemqve, - Religion, loyalty
scientiam exstingue. - and knowledge exstinguish!
E carne flvit anima - Out of the flesh flows the soul
et mors sed nvlla lacrima. - and death, but no tear.
Te libera! - Free yourself!

Proflvens aqva es. - You are fluent water.
Conflagrans flamma es. - You are a burning flame.
Fecvnda terra es. - You are fertile soil.
Validvm lignvm es. - You are solid wood.
Metallvm dvrvm es. - You are hard iron.
Aeternvs aether fi! - Become eternal ether!

Alpha et Omega - alpha and omega (the first and the last)
Devs et mortalis - god and mortal

Vnitas Pvritas Existentia - unity, purity, existence


Hats off to Negator! The Latin phrases are all grammatically correct.