Halo 3 ODST Song and Lyrics

This is a video promoting the new interactive game by Bungie. It was released on September 22nd exclusively for the Xbox 360 video game console.

The promotional video is notable because live actors are used to make a short movie. Possibly to prepare the ground for a live action full length feature film in the future. Given the games popularity and the popularity of the other games in the “Halo” franchise, this could well happen.

Halo 3 ODST Promotional Movie

The game is based around a story taking place in the 26th century. Earth is fighting a war against the “Covenant” an alliance of alien races committed to the destruction of human life. Shown in the Video are the Jiralhanae, otherwise known as “Brutes” One of the alien life forms threatening Earth. They are much larger than humans, extremely ferocious and hard to kill. Also shown is a Type-26 Ground Support Aircraft known as a “Banshee” The standard ground assault craft for the Covenant.

Earth is defended by the United Nations Space Command (UNSC) they are the Military, Exploratory and Scientific agency of the United Earth Government (UEG). The elite military arm of this agency is the Orbital Drop Shock Troopers. (ODST)

The video shows a young protagonist named Tarkov. He attends the military funeral of an acquaintance, Staff sergeant K. Stark. Who had been a member of the 19th Shock Troops Battalion of the 105th ODST Regiment. Afterwards he volunteers to join ODST. He goes through a brutal training period that includes live ammunition and combat crawls in mud.

During one of his first missions he is dropped onto an unknown planet. Large forces of Jiralhanae were waiting at the drop zone and a fierce fight ensues. As Tarkov is moving forward a Jiralhanae Major strikes cutting his face and knocking him into a puddle. The brute moves to finish him off but just then a disabled banshee flies into the Brute, killing him and saving Tarkov’s life.

Years go by and Tarkov, now much older and hardened, his facial cuts turned to deep scars, is with four other troopers holding a battlefield burial for a comrade. As explosions sound in the distance, the troopers put on their helmets and move out.

 

The song

Many people have asked about the name of the song. The video and song are named "The Life" The tune is a contemporary Welsh song called "Lament", written by the very talented duo of Daniel Lozinski and Phil Baggaley they are; "Light of Aiden" Lament was given a martial beat and new words were written by me to fit both the tune and the mythos behind the Halo stories.

During the funeral and boot camp scenes the commands are given in Hungarian. The song in the background is Welsh. The lyrics to the song are;

Gafflwn Dihenydd O’r fuddugol yn wiriol sydd, Ni fydd neb yn ein drechu, Falch ydy ni I drochu, Traed o flaen I’r Annwn, mewn y gwybodaeth fe godwn ni.

“We cheat Death from his rightful victory. No one can defeat us we are glad to plunge feet first into Annwn in the knowledge that we will rise.”

A couple of points on the translation;

There are a couple of Welsh words for “Death.” In this song the word used is Dihenydd, literally “The Ancient of Days” This is an old Welsh way of personifying death. Making death a person rather than an occurrence or a concept.

Welsh also has two words for “hell” Uffern is the Christian hell, the one of fire and brimstone and eternal torment. The word used here is Annwn, the Celtic otherworld where we go when we leave the mortal world. For warriors who die bravely in battle it is similar to the halls of Odin or Valhalla in Germanic legend. Though Annwn is also a place of rest, joy and delight, for those of a less warlike nature or if you want to take a rest from war. It is a place of punishment for the wicked and in that context can be a grim and forbidding place. Either way, nobody stays there. Eventually we all once again, enter the Cauldron of rebirth. We know we shall rise again.

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Comments 45 comments

Xander 6 years ago

how are the welsh lyrics pronounced?


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Thanks for asking,

The best advice I can give is click on the video and follow along. A couple of hints though. When a "U" or a "Y" appear in the middle of a word they are usually pronounced "ee" The "CH" is pronounced at the back of the throat as though you were gathering spit to hurl a tooley. :) "DD" is always pronounced like the "TH" in "The"

Due to the beat and rhythym the words are broken up somewhat, for instance the first line is sang as "GA fflwn di henydd" when the words are "Gafflwn Dihenydd"

A little dificult to follow if you don't understand Welsh but listen a couple of times and you will get it.


dakota 6 years ago

i want to know the name of the song


Iseriad 6 years ago

Asgard is the norse higher plane,home of odin and the gods. valhalla is sometimes refeed to as the hall of odin and is the correct parralel to anwynn. valhalla is where warriors who proved themselves in battle who died go for endless cycles of battle and celebration. now the beggining of the halo wars, glassing of reach, would best be referenced to ragnarock. I would also like to know the name of that battle hymn.


Chris 6 years ago

Lament by the Light of aidan in the name and group. you can find the song on cafe del mar album. of just go to the myspace sight and the have release on I tunes i think.


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Hello Chris; Thanks for stopping by;

The song in the Halo promo' was never given a name. The song you are referring to "Lament" is the song by Light of Aiden on their album Cafe del mar. When I was approached by Human world to write the song the musical score they gave me was a martial version of that song. I wrote it given the guidelines they provided without ever having listened to lament.

I understand that a lot of people are asking for the name of the song but it just doesn't have one, it's a song written for the promo and that's it.


Irene 6 years ago

In this video, the person that posted this on Youtube had said that there was another part that has never actually been translated. Any idea what they say?


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Hello Irene; Thanks for stopping by to read.

I'm not sure what you mean about another part. This is the complete song as finally agreed on for the promo. If you are referring to that "Army of brothers ...over the hill" quotation, that is halopedia nonsense. I have no idea where they came up with it and I find it annoying. It never was any part of the song. I have let them know that they destroy their credibility that way but if they choose to ignore the author of the work, what else is to be said of them.


Marcus 6 years ago

I was wondering if there was anyway to get the song, as an Mp3 or anything, because i love it but i can't find it anywhere


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Hi Marcus;

At this time no. There is no way to hear the song other than the Halo promo clip. There is certainly enough interest out there to make it into a full song downloadable to iTunes but I am not aware of any plans in that direction.


Sandra 6 years ago

I love this song. I was wondering who the singer is in the Halo version?


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Hello Sandra; It gives me a lot of pleasure to hear someone say they enjoyed the song. Thank you.

The singer is Kathy Fisher. Her and her husband have a band called "Fisher Band"


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 6 years ago from California

This is the best one yet. Man I'm glad I stumbled across your stuff. What an enjoyable half hour or hour you have given me (see, I don't even know how much time has passed).

Seriously, great work. I have to take off or I'd keep going through your work. Fun reading, good music variety.


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

shadesbreath; you do me too much honor. I don't know if you had the chance to read it but I have another Hub on the song "Lament" by Light of Aidan where I translate the lyrics to that song. Daniel, from Light of Aidan, was kind enough to comment.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 6 years ago from California

Yeah, I went and read it. The combination is so good it pissed me off and I had a little beer-sotted spasm in the forums. I feel better now though. :) lol


Mark Knowles profile image

Mark Knowles 6 years ago

LOL Awesome hub. Brings back memories - I lived in Wales as a child and was forced to endure Welsh language classes at school. Not my best childhood memories - I was the solitary English kid in the class. :(


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Hi Mark; thanks for reading and thanks for the comment. I'm sorry about the school but hey; they forced me to learn English. :(

There's another hub "The Thirteen Treasures of the Island of Britain" where I refer back to old Welsh legends and it's about 40% Welsh. I was afraid the Powers That Be would have pulled it but it's still there.

Thanks again for visiting. You are, and continue to be, my mentor in this place.


Mark Knowles profile image

Mark Knowles 6 years ago

Aww shucks]..... I will check out the other hub.

llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch

is still my favorite word after

antidisestablishmentarianism.......


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Never let it be said that Mark Knowles cannot spell. Well Done :)


lauren 6 years ago

vey boooooooooriengggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggg my cousin says its cooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooool cause he is a halo fan


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Hello auren: I'm not sure how to answer that :0


Steven 6 years ago

Not that I want to insult you, but did this commercial have any relation

to the Gears of War 2 commercial?

Given they did a poem in theirs while this was a musical score.


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

hello Steven; It's hard to be offended because I don't know what you mean. I'm not a gamer, in fact I had never heard of Halo until Humanworld contacted me. I looked for gears of war on you tube but couldn't see anything similar.

Thank you for reading and commenting though.

Best Wishes.........ianto


Steven 6 years ago

They did a poem, Rendezvous with Death.

But on another note, what is your favorite work in this field?


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Steven; If you go to the top of this page you will see my profile picture, click on that and you will be on my profile page. There you will see a link to contact me directly. That would be a better way of having a discussion than the limitations of a comments capsule.

Best Wishes........ianto


jmaxwell19 6 years ago

I am haunted by this song. I love it so much! I must have watched the commercial a hundred times today.

BRB, need to go seek psychiatric help.


VII 6 years ago

Beautiful song. You are truly and artist.


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

jmaxwell19; Thank you for reading and commenting. Just remember, the world is crazy, you are the only one sane. That's what gets me from bed in the morning to bed at night. :)

VII; Thank you for the comment and the compliment. I truly appreciaye both.

Please excuse me, but I was wondering, if you are VII, where's XI? :)


Dana 6 years ago

This is amazing! Im not a huge Halo fan but I am a huge fan of both versions of your Lament song! Its nice to finally find the artist behind the music. I have been searching for the real answer (to tell you the truth im not the best web surfer)

Its also great to see the brains behind the art! I am having a blast reading all of your post and researching the history and linguistics behind all of it. I had no idea I would ever be this interested in the Welsh language! If you ever get the chance to record the ODST version of Lament without the yelling and guns a blazin' I would love to buy it...I already listen to the cafe de mar one all the time! The mood of that song is SO different thought. Haunting, old spiritual and in a very earthy trance sorta way. Thank you for sharing it with us.

:) ~Dana


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Thank you so much Dana; It's always heartwarming for me to have someone appreciate my work. I would love the opportunity to add to the song and make a full length version but the Powers That Be aren't ready to do that yet.


dj atwater 6 years ago

ay man the translation to the song makes sense in the way that im a future u.s soldier who is going to war.the part that says "we cheat death from its rightful victory" means that when you meet death face to face you find the strength to over come it so that your time is not up. and the part "No one can defeat us we are glad to plunge feet first into Annwn in the knowledge that we will rise.” means that when one is not ask to do something couragous he finds the will to do the best job he can and believes truly that the outcome is worth sacrificing anything to make a good chang...........is this a good explanation


David 6 years ago

Hey ! Thanks a lot for all the explanation about this "Lament", I really love this song...it really got me capitvated since I heard it XD

The lyrics used for ODST are really solemn ones...and maybe i'm not the first to say this...bu I really love those welsh lyrics...they just sound awesome !

However I have a question... I just don't figure out what does "traed o flaen" does mean, I'm searching this info because It gets a bit confusing when I try to separate the english lyrics like with the welsh ones...

I just don't see where does " we are glad...to plunge.." go actually...because in Welsh there's only 2 words before "Annwn" ( if we put aside the L'r...) I need help!

What would be great is a transliteration of each word to see more clearly the whole thing =)

Thanks and have a nice weekend!

David


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 6 years ago from Sunny California Author

Hello David; Thanks for taking the time to read and comment.

I was asked to give a word by word translation with explanations on the XKCD forum. So here it is;

http://forums.xkcd.com/viewtopic.php?f=25&t=54762&...

That should answer all your questions and a few more besides.

Best Wishes..........Ianto


ArielL.O.G 5 years ago

Wow you wrote a beautiful song, i just think both you and the singer should get more credit for this and more people should hear it,not just those in the gaming world,it just that beautiful. Here hoping for a full length version of the song.

Good luck on all your future endeavors. :)


HRoger profile image

HRoger 5 years ago from Online where I can be!

I really think it's awesome.. I am a big fan of Halo my self. I wrote a hub comparing both PlayStation 3 vs Xbox 360, if you could check it out, it would be really cool.. and let me know what you think.

Thanks

Roger

http://hubpages.com/games-hobbies/PLAYSTATION3VSXB

http://cargames5.blogspot.com/


Alex 5 years ago

When I first saw this trailer, the song struck a chord though I did not understand a word of it. It gave the funeral scene the perfect mood, and reminded me of a family member's funeral where bagpipes were played. Very emotional.

Today I found the translation and of course you, the author. The translated words make it SOOOOO meaningful. Halo is just a video game, but the backstory is deep and fascinating (and passes most gamers right by), and your lyrics capture the essence of an ODST.

“We cheat Death from his rightful victory"... you see, ODST's are "unenhanced" soldiers. Normal humans, with no augmentation or genetic enhancements, unlike the superhuman Spartans in Halo - yet they fight vastly superior races, are the first on the ground, unsupported. Tarkov is saved on apparently his first mission (in his late teens?) by pure luck... this Banshee crashing into his attacker. He should have been killed, yet he wasn't. Surviving to middle age could only be done by "cheating Death from his rightful victory".

Also, the nickname of ODST is "helljumpers". They "plunge feet first into Annwn"... from orbit, no less!

I read in your write up that they gave you guidelines, but I would be interested to know how prescriptive they were. Especially because you captured the essence of an ODST.

Hopefully you are not put off by this!


Nick 5 years ago

This song is amazing, its a beautiful haunting luliby of war. Rest your heads wariors, your final night is here, but dont worry, you'll return to us again.

I want to sing this to my children while they sleep. The most badass luliby ever, (hella black metal XD). I truly do love this and it has made me interested in welsh, which seems rather complicated. But i suppose my question is: "what bands in welsh do u know of that create music with a similar feel to this?"


Jake 5 years ago

As the others have made abundantly clear, this song is amazing. you've mention a few times that "the powers that be" have decided not to release the song. Does that mean your under a contract that says you can distribute it? If so who is "the powers that be" Bungie? or Microsoft? or some other company. Who do we need to contact basically to make this a purchasable song. because its not stretch to say that the song would profit. In the last 3 or so years since the trailer was released there have been thousands of threads on countless forums with people asking for the real version of this song.

it really does baffle me when companies do this. there are literally tens of thousands of people who will give them good money for a 2 minute song that is already made . all they have to do is put it on freaking itunes!

so A who can we bother to make this so. and B i would imagine that you would want this out there as much as us as im sure some of the money would go to you.


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 5 years ago from Sunny California Author

I'd like to thank everyone who has taken the time to comment on the video. I appreciate the support I have received here and elsewhere. I haven't been around Hubpages much recently I'm engaged in other projects.

As for the Halo song. I completely agree, it is a constant surprise to me that more hasn't been done with something that has caught peoples imagination in such a powerful way. The first people to approach would probably be the production company "Human" This is a link to their site and the page that shows the commercials they have produced. Halo is the 5th on the second row.

http://humanworldwide.com/#commercials


Luigi 3 years ago

Hi Ianto, after all these years thank you for writing this amazing theme. Dw i'n mynd (hope this part is almost right :) ) into Welsh to have a better comprehension of the song and it's the hardest language I've ever seen so far (harder than Chinese and Japanese). Just to have a direction what kind of dialect have you used in that song or what one do you speak/write?

Thank you again,

Luigi.


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 3 years ago from Sunny California Author

Hello Luigi, thank you for commenting and asking. You may have heard something about Welsh dialects, It's nearly always wrong. The dialect I speak is the speech normally heard around Carmarthenshire and is known as "Shirgar" but that is just for casual conversation in the pub. Welsh is fairly standard throughout Wales. Thank the translation of the Bible into Welsh for that. The song is written in Welsh with no use of dialectical terms at all.

Idiom, as such, only occurs in the personification of Death in the word "Dihenydd" but that is a standard use throughout Wales. Hope this helps.


TyroneJ 3 years ago

I am sorry to bother you but I need to know how to get a clean version of your song, or at least the instrumental. This song just speaks to me like no other. Thank you for time.


iantoPF profile image

iantoPF 3 years ago from Sunny California Author

Hello TyroneJ it's no bother at all. Unfortunately there is no clean version of the song. The original song, "Lament" gave us the melody but the words are completely different and in the Halo song the tune was given a martial beat.

The Halo tune, that HumanLLC has named "The Life" does not exist on it's own.


Anon 2 years ago

Given that it was just a promo song, there wouldn't happen to be an mp3 with just the music floating around? And not those crappy "extended versions" with all kinds of audio issues.


InsasiaSic 10 months ago

Greetings, very good webpage you've in here.

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