Werewolves

Jan. 21st, 2007 04:17 pm
baleanoptera: (crow)
Some people like vampires, others like ghosts- personally I've always been fascinated with werewolves. Maybe it's the metamorphosis and the fact that they are normal people large parts of the month that intrigues me. At any rate - there are some really good medieval ballads that tell of the werewolf-myth, and some of them have been performed by Garmarna.

Garmarna is one of my favorite bands, and they create music that is usually described as neo-folk. I have posted a few of their songs before, including a few of the werewolves songs - but that was a long time ago, and I promised someone I'd upload them again. Just be warned as some of these songs are pretty dark and gruesome.

Garmarna: Varulven/Werewolf

The song at first seems rather straightforward; a girl, alone in the woods, gets eaten by the wolf. But there are sings that the story might be a bit more complex. First of all the title is "Werewolf", thereby indication that she isn't attacked by a normal wolf. Then there is the mention of linden trees quivering in the grove.

The Linden is in Nordic folklore a symbol of family, and the quivering linden trees give the impression that something is threatening the family. Secondly the expression of being "taken by the wolf" was sometimes used as a euphemism for loosing once virginity. Then there is the last line in each verse "She was carrying the fruit of love" which seems to indicate that the maiden is pregnant.

In swedish this line is slightly more ambiguous and could also be translated as "she was by love bound". When Garmarna have chosen to translate it as carrying the fruit of love it’s probably based on the lore that Scandinavian werewolves were particularly dangerous to pregnant women.

Lyrics )

Garmarna: Straffad Moder och Dotter/Mother and Daughter Punished
- this song comes from on of their earlier albums, and its style is a bit rougher and more unpolished than later albums. That said it has a drive and a use of vocals that I absolutely adore. Here its both a wolf and a fox that have once been human, and they regain their humanity by drinking their mother's heartblood.

I suppose some symbolism can be seen in that they take a life to regain their human lives.

Lyrics )

Garmarna: Vedergällningen/Vengeance
- this song tells of a protagonist that is turned into or cursed to become a wolf by his/her stepmother. One interesting aspect is that we are never told if the protagonist is male or female - only that they in the end becomes a knight bold and good, which might indicate male. Here the werewolf curse is broken by the protagonist drinking the blood of his/her brother, and killing the stepmother while doing so. It's all very gruesome - but it does combine the aspect of the pregnant woman from the first song, and the focus on heartsblood from the second.
Lyrics )
Lastly - if you download these songs and you like them, then please support the artist by buying the album.


ETA: Cross-posted to [livejournal.com profile] told_tales

Werewolves

Jan. 21st, 2007 04:17 pm
baleanoptera: (crow)
Some people like vampires, others like ghosts- personally I've always been fascinated with werewolves. Maybe it's the metamorphosis and the fact that they are normal people large parts of the month that intrigues me. At any rate - there are some really good medieval ballads that tell of the werewolf-myth, and some of them have been performed by Garmarna.

Garmarna is one of my favorite bands, and they create music that is usually described as neo-folk. I have posted a few of their songs before, including a few of the werewolves songs - but that was a long time ago, and I promised someone I'd upload them again. Just be warned as some of these songs are pretty dark and gruesome.

Garmarna: Varulven/Werewolf

The song at first seems rather straightforward; a girl, alone in the woods, gets eaten by the wolf. But there are sings that the story might be a bit more complex. First of all the title is "Werewolf", thereby indication that she isn't attacked by a normal wolf. Then there is the mention of linden trees quivering in the grove.

The Linden is in Nordic folklore a symbol of family, and the quivering linden trees give the impression that something is threatening the family. Secondly the expression of being "taken by the wolf" was sometimes used as a euphemism for loosing once virginity. Then there is the last line in each verse "She was carrying the fruit of love" which seems to indicate that the maiden is pregnant.

In swedish this line is slightly more ambiguous and could also be translated as "she was by love bound". When Garmarna have chosen to translate it as carrying the fruit of love it’s probably based on the lore that Scandinavian werewolves were particularly dangerous to pregnant women.

Lyrics )

Garmarna: Straffad Moder och Dotter/Mother and Daughter Punished
- this song comes from on of their earlier albums, and its style is a bit rougher and more unpolished than later albums. That said it has a drive and a use of vocals that I absolutely adore. Here its both a wolf and a fox that have once been human, and they regain their humanity by drinking their mother's heartblood.

I suppose some symbolism can be seen in that they take a life to regain their human lives.

Lyrics )

Garmarna: Vedergällningen/Vengeance
- this song tells of a protagonist that is turned into or cursed to become a wolf by his/her stepmother. One interesting aspect is that we are never told if the protagonist is male or female - only that they in the end becomes a knight bold and good, which might indicate male. Here the werewolf curse is broken by the protagonist drinking the blood of his/her brother, and killing the stepmother while doing so. It's all very gruesome - but it does combine the aspect of the pregnant woman from the first song, and the focus on heartsblood from the second.
Lyrics )
Lastly - if you download these songs and you like them, then please support the artist by buying the album.


ETA: Cross-posted to [livejournal.com profile] told_tales
baleanoptera: (Default)
Autumn has started to creep over us, an as it's my favorite season I feel like celebrating with some of my favorite songs.Simple logic -yeah? And to follow the path of logic - since autumn can be dark,let the songs be dark as well. Old medieval ballads - well, they can be pretty dark, and disturbing...

Very few of the old Scandinavian medieval ballads are about werewolves. Most tell of trolls, the usage of runes and every now and then a knight. Then again what the werewolf songs lack in quantity they regain in quality.The swedish folk band Garmarna have covered a few of the best )
baleanoptera: (Default)
Autumn has started to creep over us, an as it's my favorite season I feel like celebrating with some of my favorite songs.Simple logic -yeah? And to follow the path of logic - since autumn can be dark,let the songs be dark as well. Old medieval ballads - well, they can be pretty dark, and disturbing...

Very few of the old Scandinavian medieval ballads are about werewolves. Most tell of trolls, the usage of runes and every now and then a knight. Then again what the werewolf songs lack in quantity they regain in quality.The swedish folk band Garmarna have covered a few of the best )

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