02 Φύσεως – Mother Nature’s Hymn
03 Ήλιου – A Prayer To Sun
04 Έρωτος – A Hymn To Erotas God Of Love
05 Ανδρείος – The Brave
06 Ενδότερη Έγερσις – Internal Rising – Awakening
07 Ομοίων – Dedicated To “The Alike”
08 Αισθήσεων Κυρίαρχος – Dominant Of Senses
09 Πυρφόρος – Fire Holder
10 Φθοράς Ενταφιασμός – Corruption’s Burial
11 Νενικήκαμεν – “We Won”
Tethrippon was formed in 2006 in Northern Hellas, by Constantinos (lyrics) and Demetrios (music). After a couple self-releases they attracted local attention, which led to a series of live performances, and were finally noticed by the Austrian Steinklang Records. “Tethrippon” was released soon after that, in 2009, receiving wide critical acclaim and a warm welcome from the martial/neoclassical audience, in addition to a heartfelt stamp of approval from those of us who still honour our Hellenic origins and look to our heritage and the old gods for guidance. The content, vocabulary, syntax and structuring of the lyrics are heavily influenced by Orphic Hymns (for those of you who understand ancient Greek and wish to delve deeper into the subject, a collection of hymns can be found here: http://www.theogonia.gr/bibliothiki/downloads/The_Hymns_of_Orpheus.pdf ). Given the fact that the sole purpose of this project is the commemoration of our ancestors’ cultural as well as historical feats, the lyrics are naturally very closely connected to the music. The ideals of inner nobility, bravery, discipline and honour are eloquently expressed with the use of diversely evocative, vividly cinematic sounds ranging from martial industrial to soundtrack and neoclassical, which are given their warlike tone by militaristic drumming and battle horns. “Tethrippon” completes a full narrative circle, as it gradually culminates to a heroic climax of self-sacrifice and resistance against the darkness of ignorance and corruption. A return to our history, to the ancient ideals of excellence and patriotism will serve as a guiding light for the lost souls of modern existence, numbed by misinformation, plagued by inaction.
“Mother Nature’s Hymn” is lyrically closest to the original Orphic hymns in comparison to the rest of the album’s lyrics. With its mournful synths, penetrating string sequences and melodic vocals it constitutes a theatrical praise to the immeasurable qualities of nature, responsible for propagating the cycle of life and death, dispersing irrefutable justice and blessing with its life-giving properties those who are able to respect its mechanisms. The track is also a lament for the disturbance of natural order by those who act as parasites, being essentially unable to understand its functions due to their characteristic lack of wisdom. Exploiting and ravaging the Earth at any given opportunity, the modern man is a “hater of self, harbinger of evil times”. The course he has chosen inevitably leads to the destruction of all that is fair. “A Prayer To Sun” emits a loftier, lighter and more expansive musical signal, with uplifting ritual drums and atmospheric synths carrying off an imposingly romantic melody. The light of the sun has always been a significant focal point in both ancient and contemporary Hellenic civilization. Inextricably tied to the landscape, it represents clarity, equity, love and justice. In the archetypal struggle between Darkness and Light presented in most ancient mythologies, our history and culture has always been a landmark for the resistance against the prevailing of darkness. The light-bearing figure of Apollo, considered by some as the originator of Lucifer, is a champion of truth, knowledge and inner illumination. The down-tempo, ethnic – ethereal ambience of “A Hymn To Erotas” welcomes the pain caused the god of Love, emphatically stating that “unfortunate is the soul that has not felt your pain while alive, it is indeed a dead one”.
The recording enters a more intense phase with “The Brave”, a track dedicated to Kinaigeiros, the legendary brother of the tragic poet Aeschylus. The two brothers fought together in the battle of Marathon, where the Persians suffered a bitter defeat. Attempting to make their escape through the sea, they were intercepted by the Athenians. Kinaigeiros seized a Persian ship with his bare hands, thus preventing it from sailing away, and giving his comrades time to arrive and conquer it. A Persian soldier cut off his arm with an axe, and Kinaigeiros fell in the waters and died. He was declared a hero of the city of Athens and his name remained in history, serving as an example for the achievement of the impossible until this very day. With symphonic strings, melodic ambience and bellicose drumming, the track depicts the hero in a poetic and highly epic manner, as he travels through the river Acheron, arriving at the realm of the dead alone, bearing the ship as his trophy. He is welcomed by pensive and grey shadows, while the wild cheers of victory echo in the world of the living.
“Internal Rising” alludes to contemporary times, linking the ancient Hellenic teachings with the situation in the world today, urging us to follow our inner voice and to have complete faith in ourselves, taking example from our ancestors who dared to fight their fear, attaining the unattainable. It is mostly comprised of military marches and horns, with some synths adding a sense of nostalgic stateliness. One can only go upwards from here, as “Dedicated To The Alike” follows. Perhaps the most intensely dramatic, fiercely belligerent track of the whole album, unlikely to fail to bring chills down the spine of any decent martial industrial fan. Rigorous martial industrial rhythms pierced by shrilling melodic strings imprinting an anxious, ominous melody, strict military drumming, sharp, masculine vocals, all ending in an operatic crescendo of tremendous grandiosity and weight. It does perfect justice to the 300 of Sparta, to which it is dedicated.
“Dominant Of Senses” is a melodious flow of ancient Hellenic orchestrations, dedicated to the cult of the Cynthian Apollo in Pimpleia, ending in a celebratory affirmation of renewed devotion. In “Fire Holder” the light-worshipping nature of the album is further emphasized, by reference to Prometheus, the Titan who defied the rules of Olympus to bring the gift of fire to mankind. Tethrippon examines both sides of the story, as the result of his gift was an evolution with many negative consequences as well. One need only remember J. R. Oppenheimer’s quotation from the Bhagavad Gita : “I am become death, the destroyer of worlds”.
“Corruption’s Burial” according to the words of the artists, is a protest against the enforcement of “internal darkness”. Many wars have been fought in these lands in the name of freedom, and many inhuman penalties have been imposed for the sake of suppressing corruption. In view of the current situation one is inclined to ask the exact same question the lyrics are posing: why did our ancestors sacrifice their lives for the sake of their country, only to be exploited by power-hungry forces, which finally ended up destroying the same ideals they claimed to represent? The sorrowful air of the music is coupled with the sad realization of the colossal mistake our generations have made, to put the legacy entrusted to us in the hands of people unworthy to manage it, forfeiting our right and responsibility to it.
It may seem that the album describes a gloomy predicament, and one that has worsened since its release. As is stated however in a previous track “cowardice and tears do not suit the brave”. It is not the calling of those who have chosen the path of the light, to give in to the weight of difficulties, allowing darkness to take over. They are instead strengthened by their pain. That is why the closing track is “We Won”, the phrase spoken by the Marathon runner who ran back to Athens to give tidings of the battle, leaving his last breath moments afterwards. A military salute to the past and reminder to everyone living in these trying times, to bear their ancestral blood with pride, to learn from their heritage and to strive for historical conscience. When the unconquerable enemy marches, you do not yield, you stand and fight. That is the Hellenic spirit, and it is more relevant now than ever.