Heavy Metal in Latin: Arxplendida, Swiss Entry to Eurovision Song Contest

Latin nerds and metal heads may clash in the schoolyard, but damn, they rock in combo.

With metal gaining acceptance in the Eurovision Song Contest–Azerbaijan’s debut ESC 2008 entry is legendary, and Latin having been the reigning language back in ye olde olden days, well, it was only a matter of time before some metal band made a Eurovision-centric entry in Latin. Though part of the goal of Eurovision seems to be to not win because the winning country has to host the following year, some countries still take ESC pretty seriously.

The German Swiss entry, Arxplendida, with their song “Mercurii Diei” takes on the absurdity of Eurovision: Dorky national costume jackets and matching neckties;  super square haircuts; soaring metal vocals set against tragic green screen stock footage of farms, forests, and abandoned buildings; and a Eurovision nod in the lyrics. In Latin that looks and sounds super metal, and reflects in translation to German (and then into English) a contemporary slacker ennui. The band sees themselves as underdogs, commenting in the lyrics that they didn’t  do so well on Swiss Idol and were told they had no chance at Eurovision. However fans disagreed, and Arxplendida was voted into ESC.

Mercurii diei

Hebdomada miserrima fuit, nihil bene evenit.
Primum adamata me dimisit.
Tum locator me domo eiecit.
canis crus vicini mordicus paene abstulit.

Nunc est vesper Mercurii diei et nihil animum sollicitat,
Cum ad mensam nostram sedens cum amicis cervesiam poto.
Si mane corpus ad officia explenda non est paratum,
nihil interest. Talis enim est vesper operae pretium.

The week was a scream, it worked absolutely nothing,
At first I was thoroughly polished off [by]my girlfriend.
The landlord has kicked me out on it out of the apartment
And the neighbor’s dog has almost bitten off my left leg.

But today is Wednesday night and I whistle it,
If I on the trunk with my friends a beer sauf.
And if the body in the morning the service denied
That does not matter, such an evening is worth it.

3 Responses to "Heavy Metal in Latin: Arxplendida, Swiss Entry to Eurovision Song Contest"
Alex Gordon | Thursday December 5, 2013 05:06 pm 1

I love this article! I wish them mega-stardom for their weirdness and cheekiness.

E. F. Beall | Thursday December 5, 2013 07:47 pm 2

Speaking as a classical philologist, I find this development fascinating; thanks, Lisa. An ancient poet like Catullus (who wrote, among other things, that he wished he could get as close to his lover as did her pet sparrow) would have loved it.

mzchief | Thursday December 5, 2013 08:32 pm 3

{ LMAO } A new fav along with Aaralyn & Izzy’s Black Metal

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