Aliens in This World

An ordinary Catholic and a science fiction and fantasy fan.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Nochnoi Dozor Soundtrack Translations



Over the last couple days, I've been posting translations of most of the songs on the Russian soundtrack album for the urban fantasy movie Nochnoi Dozor, aka Night Watch (2004). You will find them below.

Why did I do this? Partly because I finally got ahold of the soundtrack only in the last month or so. Partly because I was going crazy singing along with songs when I couldn't quite make out the lyrics, or didn't know the words I was singing. But mostly because I could and felt like it, having finally finished unofficially translating the 1998 novel by Sergei Lukyanenko on which this movie (and its in-production sequel, Nochnoi Dozor 2: Chalk Circle of Fate) are based.

I was ecstatic to find that the novel, and our friend Anton, actually has a happy ending! Not a foregone conclusion for any Russian novel, and especially not for one with as many twists and bad deals for the main characters as this one.

As those of you who have been reading this blog for a while may know, I like this movie and book quite a lot. I like the soundtrack, too, especially in its extended "unofficial version", which you can buy in mp3 form at mp3search.ru. It's a unique mix: Russian classic rock with tubas cheek by jowl with balalaika hip hop, techno, R&B, singer-songwriter angst, a Queen remix, a filksong performed by a fantasy writer friend of Lukyanenko's, and Arab/Celtic Renfair music from Richie Blackmore! It's fun and musically inventive, with something for everyone. Even my dad didn't find it too hateful, and he's the king of turning off tunes.

But Russians love poetry, and thus really appreciate music with strong lyrics. Notice how the vocals aren't generally mixed down as far as in American music, and how clearly singers tend to enunciate. Lukyanenko really believed in that, too; the lyrics of the songs that came up on Anton's player were important elements of the story he was telling. So the album's even more enjoyable and topical to the movie and book if you know what's being sung.

So I've translated a few of the songs so that they can be sung, but I tried not to sacrifice meaning to rhyme and rhythm. The others are as literal of translations as I thought I could get away with. I hope you find them helpful and interesting. Enjoy.

7 Comments:

  • At 7:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Can that Russian Music Site be trueted with my creditcard details ?

     
  • At 7:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Typical keyboard typo.

    I meant to write "trusted"


    Thanks in advance

     
  • At 7:56 PM, Blogger babelmoi said…

    Thanks so much for translating the music!!
    But some songs are missing from the soundtrack on the Russian site. I would love to have Zhanna Friskes song from her concert scene in the movie and I can't find it anywhere. I also can't seem to find the song the vampire neighbor is always listening to, nor the song that was played when ????? gets stopped by the police while chasing after the kid.
    If you have any idea where I could find these or send them directly to me, it would very much appreciated!! I would hate to buy the cd and have three of my favorite songs from the movie missing.
    Thanks so much again and BTW great review on the movie -- I've seen some really crap ones almost as if the people hadn't even watched the movie. :-)

     
  • At 8:01 PM, Blogger babelmoi said…

    PS . where did you get that unofficial translation, I'd love to read the book in Russian, but I am afraid my level might be slightly too low to understand everything... I should probably do both but I can't get my hands on a copy of either and I'm dying to read the book!!!

     
  • At 12:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    just wondering if anyone knows where you can buy the soundtrack in australia or can u get it imported from russia?? i really want it!!

     
  • At 11:25 PM, Blogger rduht said…

  • At 9:45 AM, Blogger ser rohan said…

    does anyone know which song is played
    on the radio when anton goes to meat market to get blood?
    please help
    mail it to maru.abc@gmail

     

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