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40:1 is the third song on the album The Art Of War album by Sabaton.

Information

  • The song tells about chapter four - "Tactical Dispositions" in Sun Tzu's "The Art Of War" book.
  • For some reason, Sun Tzu's quote is placed at the end of The Art Of War song.
  • Demo version of the song was titled "Soldier Of Heaven". It featured improvised lyrics.
  • The song became a phenomenon in Poland shortly after it was released, thanks to a fan video from YouTube that shortly reached over 3 000 000 views. It was the most viewed video in Poland.[1]
  • In 2008 and 2009, the song and the band got major coverage in Polish media.[2]
  • The band was invited to Wizna by Wizna 1939 Association, where they could see the bunkers and the battlefield, visited Captain Raginis' grave, held a press conference, met with the fans and families of the soldiers who participated in the battle.[3]
  • Sabaton wanted to release the song with Polish lyrics as a single in 2008, but it was too difficult for Joakim to sing the whole song in Polish.
  • Sabaton played a free concert on the 90th Anniversary of Polish Independence Day in Gdańsk. (11.11.2008). They were invited by European Solidarity Centre and SUM Association.[4]
  • The band received various thank-you gifts for the song:
  1. hand-embossed gorget with a Polish Eagle from the scouts in Wizna
  2. Polish traditional military four-cornered caps called "rogatywka" at the concert in Kraków, 2008
  3. original officer's saber from the times of the Second Polish Republic, from archbishop Głódź[5]
  • Director Jacek Raginis, one of the Captain Raginis'relatives, shot the music video for 40:1. [6]
  • Rafał Roskowiński, a Polish artist, made a comic book inspired by the song "Wizna 1939. 40:1. Art Of War". It features the story of the battle, the lyrics to the song in English, as well as the Polish translation. The comic book premiered on the same day as the music video, 22.02.2009. The comic was even available for download from the Polish Army's website.[7][8]
  • Thanks to 40:1 which resulted in the band's rising popularity in Poland, Sabaton headlined their first major tour in Poland called "Always Remember Tour" in 2009. One of the concerts took place in Strękowa Góra, on the actual battlefield decribed in the song.[9]
  • Another "thank-you-gifts" for the song in Poland, took place during the concert in Strękowa Góra in 2009. The Chief of the Chancellery of the President of the Republic of Poland Władysław Stasiak, in the presence of Deputy Speaker Krzysztof Putra handed Sabaton heraldry of the White Eagle. After that, the head of the Zawady Municipality, Paweł Pogorzelski acquainted everyone with the resolution of the Municipality Council, which granted honorary citizenship of the Zawady municipiality for Sabaton band members. Musicians received personalized diplomas.[10]
  • In the 10th anniversary of The Art Of War interview, Pär revealed that the Polish president Lech Kaczyński was supposed to attend the concert in Strękowa Góra, but he had a meeting with the Russian president on the day of the concert.[11]
  • In 2013, 40:1 single, limited to 2000 copies with Polish version of 40:1 (featuring guest vocalists from the Polish metal scene) was released exclusively in Poland.[12]
  • In 2019, 40:1 became the anthem of Uniformed Education Center in Ełk, Poland.[13]

Background

Joakim: "Polish fans had sent us information about the battle of Wizna. When we read of the deeds of Captain Władysław Raginis and his friends, it was for us the story so improbable that we thought at first that may not be true. Such incredible courage of 720 soldiers resisted to 42 0000 of Germans! We recognized immediately that this is the most interesting battle of history, and of course we wrote a song about it, "40:1"."[14]

Pär: "This is what we do, we write songs about historical war themes. Basically we did nothing different, besides that we asked our fans worldwide to send in ideas for songs for a new album. Since we had a lot of Polish fans that were very enthusiastic, they sent in ideas for several historical things from Poland. One of them was the history of Wizna. We thought when we made our research that it was very interesting event in your history and something worth writing a song about."[15]

Joakim: "We have a song, “40:1,” it’s about the Battle of Wizna in Poland. We played that particular battlefield exactly 70 years on the day after the battle happened. Those things are kind of hard to forget (...)"[16]

Historic fact

In 1939 when the German wehrmacht rolled into Poland crushing virtually all resistance, 720 Polish soldiers positioned near the small village of Wizna proved that the Polish people truly had Spartan blood running in their veins. These few brave men managed to hold a German force of over 40,000 soldiers at a stalemate for 3 days. They were outnumbered 40 to 1.[17]

The battle of Wizna (7th-10th of September 1939). 720 Polish infantrymen, commanded by Władysław Raginis, defended a small fortified line near the village of Wizna against more than 40 000 German soldiers while being under a heavy artillery barrage.[18]

Lyrics

40:1

"Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles
is not supreme excellence;
supreme excellence consists
in breaking the enemy's resistance
without fighting." - Sun Tzu

Baptised in fire
Forty to one

So silent before the storm
Awaiting command
A few has been chosen to stand
As one outnumbered by far
The orders from high command
Fight back, hold your ground!

In early September it came
A war unknown to the world
No army may enter that land
That is protected by Polish hand
Unless you are forty to one
Your force will soon be undone

Baptised in fire
Forty to one
Spirit of spartans
Death and glory
Soldiers of Poland
Second to none
Wrath of the Wehrmacht brought to a halt

The 8th of September it starts
The rage of the Reich
A barrage of mortars and guns
Stand past, the bunkers will hold
The captain has pledged his life
I’ll face my fate here!
The sound of artillery strike
So fierce
The thunder of guns

So come, bring on all that you’ve got
Come hell, come high water, never stop
Unless you are forty to one
Your lives will soon be undone

Baptised in fire
40 to 1
Spirit of spartans
Death and glory
Soldiers of Poland
Second to none
Wrath of the Wehrmacht brought to a halt

Always remember, a fallen soldier
Always remember, fathers and sons at war
Always remember, a fallen soldier
Always remember, fathers and sons at war
Always remember, a fallen soldier
Always remember, buried in history

No vermin may enter that land
That is protected by Polish hand
Unless you are forty to one
Your force will soon be undone

Baptised in fire
Forty to one
Spirit of spartans
Death and glory!
Soldiers of Poland
Second to none
Wrath of the Wehrmacht brought to a halt

No, no, no

40:1 (Polish Version)

Ochrzczeni w ogniu
Twardzi jak stal!

W tej ciszy niosącej śmierć
Czekają na znak
Wybrańcy co dziś pójdą w bój
Gotowi przelać swą krew
Gdy rozkaz wydano im
"Walczymy, już czas"
We wrześniu zobaczył nasz świat
Wojny zakrwawioną twarz

Nie damy wejść tutaj dziś wam
Bo Polak dumnie swych strzeże bram
Nieliczni, lecz twardzi jak stal
Do walki stają, już czas
Już czas!

Baptised in fire
40:1
Spirit of Spartans
Death and glory
Soldiers of Poland
Second to none
Wrath of the Wehrmacht brought to a halt

Na dobre zaczęło się
Naciera już wróg
Lecz bunkry wytrzymają tę
Zaporę moździerzy i kul
Kapitan im dzielnie rzekł:
"Tu spotkam swój los"
Ogromny artylerii huk
I deszcz granatów i bomb

Nie damy wejść tutaj dziś wam
Bo Polak dumnie swych strzeże bram
Nieliczni, lecz twardzi jak stal
Do walki stają, już czas
Już czas!

Baptised in fire
40:1
Spirit of Spartans
Death and glory
Soldiers of Poland
Second to none
Wrath of the Wehrmacht brought to a halt

Zawsze pamiętaj, polscy żołnierze
Zawsze pamiętaj, krwawy stoczyli bój
Zawsze pamiętaj, polscy żołnierze
Zawsze pamiętaj, ojców i synów krew
Zawsze pamiętaj, polscy żołnierze
Zawsze pamiętaj, wiecznie niech pamięć trwa

Pokażcie więc na co was stać
Piekła sił nie będziemy się bać
Nieliczni, lecz twardzi jak stal
Do walki stają, już czas
Już czas!

Baptised in fire
40:1
Spirit of Spartans
Death and glory
Soldiers of Poland
Second to none
Wrath of the Wehrmacht brought to a halt

Nie! Nie! Nie!

Soldier Of Heaven (40:1 demo)

I see how the heathes rise
L*** for their lives
Are into the christians of time
You know, what evil will do
I run down the stairs to hell
Come hear what I say!
Now you will be paying the price
You know, their lies has been burned

He stands on the top of the world
His eyes are scanning for sins on Earth
He knows that his fire still burns
He knows the evil will call, will call

Soldier of heaven, warrior of light
Valhalla's waiting, ride for Odin
Soldier of heaven, warrior of light
Valhalla's waiting, pray for Odin right

Video

SABATON - 40 1 (Official Music Video)-0

SABATON - 40 1 (Official Music Video)-0

SABATON - 40 1 (Official Fan Made Video)

SABATON - 40 1 (Official Fan Made Video)

SABATON - 40 1 Live in Poland 2010 (OFFICIAL LIVE)

SABATON - 40 1 Live in Poland 2010 (OFFICIAL LIVE)

Sabaton History

40 1 – The Battle of Wizna – Sabaton History 001 Official

40 1 – The Battle of Wizna – Sabaton History 001 Official

References

  1. Sabaton.net
  2. sverigesradio.se
  3. wizna1939.eu
  4. biznes.trojmiasto.pl
  5. dziennikbaltycki.pl
  6. metallife.com
  7. wizna1939.eu
  8. alejakomiksu.pl
  9. rp.pl
  10. zielonewrota.pl
  11. Sabaton.net
  12. wosp.org.pl
  13. radio5.com.pl
  14. rp.pl
  15. polskieradio.pl
  16. crypticrock.com
  17. The Art Of War booklet
  18. Sabaton.net
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