All There in the Manual: Some instrumental pieces (such as "Yaneura no Shoujo" and "Raijin no Sawan") have lyrics printed in the CD booklets, not to mention that many of their songs will have references to songs or storylines in other albums.
Battle Cry: After General Alvarez/Ramirez/Amethystos/Cortes/Gefenbauer!!!
Bilingual Bonus: The lyrics given in the CD booklets are all in Japanese, but parts are usually sung in another language (English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Greek...). These foreign language bits often have a slightly (or very) different meaning from the lyrics as written in Japanese.
Character as Himself: Revo is typically credited by the name of the character he plays in the album.
Abyss shows up briefly in Roman as the man who kills Loraine de Saint-Laurent's lover.
Moira has a minor character called Orph who suspiciously resembles Orpheus.
Elysion features Old Rose, the one-eyed "Crimson Witch" who was banished to the forest. Cut to Märchen, in which a red-clad witch with one eye covered by her hair called Alte Rose ("Old Rose" in German) appears...
"Yaneura Roman" all but confirms that Michèle Malebranche has trapped Hiver in a deadly Eternal Recurrence much like the one she suffers.
Cool Shades: If Revo isn't dressed as one of the album characters, he's wearing these.
Death of the Author: Invoked by Revo's infamous declaration of, "All interpretations are valid."
Epic Rocking: Quite a few in their story albums. Märchen, for example, has a grand total of one song ("Gyoukou no Uta") under six minutes.
Fake Nationality: By necessity, usually - Most of the albums are set outside of East Asia, and there's not exactly a surplus of French/ancient Greek/Middle-Eastern/German/etc. singers working in Japan that can sing fluently in Japanese.
Fantasy Kitchen Sink: For just one example, going by "The Witch and Lafrenze" and "Princess Sleeping in a Rose-Covered Tower," Sleeping Beauty's daughter is abandoned and raised by the fairy who cursed Sleeping Beauty. Eventually, she falls in love with Orpheus, but is used by him, so she curses him so that his Orphean Rescue will fail.
Only One Name: Revo, Jimang, Aramary, and a large number of the vocalists (REMI, MIKKI, KAORI, etc.)
Rearrange the Song: Frequently in their live shows, sometimes out of necessity (as with all of the Aramary songs), but mostly just because they can.
Revo: So why is REMI singing Utsukushiki Mono? Because she said she wanted to. And Hiiro no Fuusha's violin solo was changed to Acchan's bass solo since he wanted to do it. This is something new we tried this time. We don't need consistency!
This Is Unforgivable: This phrase is repeated over and over at the beginning and the end of "Hiiro no Hana".
Together in Death: After the protagonist of "Koibito wo Uchiotoshita Hi" slays the monster that used to be her lover, she uses the last arrow she has to kill herself.
Pico MagicPico Magic Reloaded
Abusive Parents: Keeping your child chained in the attic sounds pretty abusive to me.
And I Must Scream: Michèle Malebranche, in Christopher Jean-Jacques Saint-Laurent's professional opinion.
"She probably wanted to escape The narrow cage she was trapped in... To the point of monomania. ...but, regrettably her wish was not granted during her lifetime. ...and even now, one century after her death, she is still within that cage..."
Nonindicative Name: "Pico Magic" isn't exactly the sort of name you'd expect an album about a torturous, inescapable cycle of death to have - It also has little to no connection to the first Pico Magic.
Recurring Riff: All tracks of the "cage trilogy" ("Yaneura no Shoujo", "Ori no naka no Yuugi", and "Ori no naka no Hana") all have a riff in common, indicating they're all part of the same story. This also connects them to Roman, as the later album has a bonus track that also shares the riff.
Black Cloak: The uniform for members of the Black Order.
The Call Put Me On Hold: The boy in "Raijin no Keifu" lacks the emblem on his right arm that all of the other villagers bear, as well as the power that comes with it. It turns out that this is because he has the Thunder God's actual arm, though he needs the help of The Chief's Daughter to use it and not kill himself in the process.
Character Development: Arbelge at first seems like a ruthless warrior, as far as receiving the title as the Reaper, but later turned into a good man after saving a girl injured by his fellow soldier.
The Chief's Daughter: in "Raijin no Keifu", though she ends up saving the hero instead of the other way around.
Love Makes You Evil: Something of a theme throughout the album, or at least the Abyss tracks. Apparently, love makes you stab people, push people down stairs, cut people's heads off, set entire villages ablaze, and shoot people.
No Name Given: Apart from El, Abyss, Lafrenze, and Orpheus, none of the characters have names; They are instead known by their track titles. The siblings from Ark are referred to as Soror and Frater, but that's just "sister" and "brother" in Latin.
Schizo Tech: At least in Ark, Soror's brain is being experimented on (using really high-tech and futuristic computer stuff in the manga at that). However, in Sacrifice, people still seem to be in the Burn the Witch!Deliver Us from Evil-believing era of human biology.
No Name Given: The main character of the story is known in Japan simply as Sword Boy.
All There in the Manual: The entire CD. It's impossible to tell, more often than not, what exactly is going on. In particular, "Norowareshi Hōseki" brings up a LOT of questions regarding practically everything, not like other songs (i.e. "11-moji no Dengon (Message)") don't, either.
It very quickly gets to the point where, the more you think about it and try to figure it out, the more brainpain you doom yourself to.
A lot of critical information (particularly relating to "Norowareshi Hōseki" and "Yaneura Roman") is in the much earlier Pico Magic Reloaded rather than in Roman itself.
Artifact of Death: The eponymous diamond in "Norowareshi Hōseki", which brings death to anyone who possesses it.
Body Motifs: In "Miezaru Ude", the main character is missing an arm, and this is brought up a fair amount of times in the lyrics. Heck, it's referenced straight in the title (translation: "The Invisible Arm").
Creepy Twins: Violette and Hortense, though arguably, they're also quite cute.
Catch Phrase: "Soko ni Roman wa aru no kashira", or roughly, "I wonder if a story exists there", which is the line that either Violette or Hortense or both will say in each song. Hiver gets his own variant of this phrase ("Soko ni Roman wa aru no darou ka") in the first track.
Cypher Language: Somewhat. In the lyrics booklet, each song has a Japanese character replaced with a four digit number. This is important for "11-moji no Dengon (Message)", where a message in the lyrics is written out as a chain of these numbers. Since the vocalist only sings the line in "la" syllables, the actual message needs to be worked out using that code. Not to say that's the only "message" to be found, however...
Drowning My Sorrows: The blond Laurant in "Miezaru Ude" after the redheaded Laurant severs his arm and leaves him in constant, crippling pain. When the blond Laurant finally encounters the redheaded Laurant for a second time, he seems that he's succumbed to the same fate after losing his own arm.
Gratuitous French: Roman translates to "story", and there are French words and phrases scattered throughout the songs. The lyrics in the included booklet don't have the French written out however, but rather Japanese equivalents (which is typical for Sound Horizon). To Revo's credit though, the translations hold unless he's going for a double meaning in the text.
Intellectual Animal: Pleut; in "Hoshikuzu no Kawahimo", she sings with Étoile, even though she's a dog. It's depicted in the manga as a sort of dream experience where a blind Étoile can see her and interact with her.
Mad God: "Yaneura Roman" implies that the world in Roman was created by Michèle Malebranche. No go back to Reloaded and realize what that entails.
Meaningful Name: A few. To start off, Hiver is "winter" in French, the season of his death.
Violette and Hortense refer to "violets" and "hortensia/hydrangea". Also, with a little creativity regarding the flowers' imagery and kanji pronunciation wordplay, you get "death" and "life" respectively.
Étoile's name is actually explained and referenced right in the song title, through the song, and in the manga adaption many times. Heck, it's kind of the point of her song to begin with.
One Steve Limit: Averted - there are quite a lot of Laurants running around. "Miezaru Ude" in particular features a man named Laurant confronting a man also named Laurant after the latter severed the former's arm. And then Laurencin shows up...
P.O.V. Sequel: "Yorokobi to Kanashimi no Budōshu" is implied to be the same story as "Eru no Tenbin", only from the side of the eloping lovers, which is the interpretation the manga takes
Pretty in Mink: Hiver once again. His coat's trimmed and apparently lined with the stuff.
Recurring Riff: A faintly playing musicbox shows up at the end of most songs when one of the dolls delivers the catchphrase. There are two brief tunes alternating depending on the doll speaking, but both are still recognizable from the first track's melody.
Also, there's no way to not recognize a slower version of the chorus' melody in "Asa to Yoru no Roman (Monogatari)" and in the final verse of "11-moji no Dengon (Message)". Plus, "Hiver's Message", a song exclusive to the Triumph III concert, uses a quick chord progression also found in the aforementioned chorus.
Runaway Fiancé: Implied in "Yorokobi to Kanashimi no Budōshu"; definitely the case in the manga adaptation.
Storyboard Body: Hiver, Violette, and Hortense all. In the manga, it's shown that Hiver cloned (for lack of a better word) his facial tattoos onto the cheeks of his dolls. Violette, being the doll relating to death, gets the moon, while Hortense, as the one relating to life, gets the sun.
Unreliable Narrator: "Yaneura Roman" suggests that one of the dolls is not quite honest about the stories she finds. ("Reality…fantasy…the world of roman…who is the liar-").
What Do You Mean, It's Not Symbolic?: Life and death and the cycle they both make... The windmill references in one or two songs, the change of the seasons... Plus the characters' names, and their roles, and practically everything about this and every other Sound Horizon story album, really.
Bishounen: Orion. And arguably, Elef. And probably Leontius, Orpheus...
Blind Seer: Misia is blinded after washing up on Lesbos's coast, after which she is rescued by Phyllis and trained as a diviner.
Book Ends: The album's bonus track, "Kami no Hikari - Moira", repeats the first verse of "Meiou - Thanatos" before being suddenly cut off. This, when put together with Eirene's twins, suggests that history is going to repeat itself.
Break the Cutie: Thanatos spends the entirety of the album tormenting Elefso that he will eventually give in to Thanatos and become his host to fight against Moira.
Cain and Abel: Leontius and his half-brother, Scorpius, are warring against each other to hold the throne of Illion. Leontius successfully slays Scorpius, only to be killed by his Long Lost Brother Elef/Amethystos in his siege of Illion.
Orion: One-hit kill! 'The bow bends and a flame springs forth, freezing the night sky over' shot!
Elef: The name’s too long, idiot!
Orion: Hush you! This is the essence of Orion-styled archery!
Closer to Earth: Eirene, when compared to her erratic, over-the-top husband.
Cosmic Plaything: Thanatos metaphorically rakes Elef over the coals so that Elef will eventually rebel against Moira, the Goddess of Fate, and allow himself to be consumed by Thanatos.
Cut Song: According to Revo, Moira was originally going to be long enough two fill up two CDs entirely, but it had to be pruned down for undisclosed reasons. Even after that, ten more minutes worth of already recorded music had to be cut
Four is Death: 4 minutes and 44 seconds into the bonus track of Moira, the sound of someone whispering "Thanatos" can be heard.
Forged by the Gods: Elef's black sword was (probably) made by Thanatos, after all it is black and glows darkish violet in the stage version of "Doreitachi no Eiyū - Elefseus" performed in Triumph of the Third Territorial Expansion
Framing Device: The main story is nested in a frame story of Zvolinsky, a Russian billionaire, who is excavating the ruins of Arcadia in order to discover the truth behind the Elefseyan epic, a translated copy of which he reads the story from. For bonus points, the song in question is named "Jinsei wa Ireko Ningyou -Matryoshka".
Ghost Song: Misia's ghost sings a duet with Elef in "Shiseru Otome Sono Te ni wa Suigetsu - Parthenos".
Long Lost Relative: Leontius had a younger brother who was taken away as a newborn in order to avert the prophesy that he would slay his mother. Leontius believes his brother to be Orion, but in reality his brother is Elef.
Lyrical Dissonance: "Jinsei wa Ireko Ningyou - Matryoshka" is a very cheerful song about how life can be a never ending parade of misery.
Life is a gift, a Matryoshka doll filled with absurdity.
No matter how much you open it up, you will find only pain.
Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Elef, after Misia's death goes and kills everyone who once tormented them. Lastly he goes against Moira, the goddess of fate herself.
Scream Discretion Shot: Elef's abuse by Nestro is only suggested by the sound of whips, Elef's screams, and Nestro asking where he likes it and if he's enjoying it. In the live shows, Nestro pulls Elef behind a wall to commit the act.
Dying Curse: Therese as she is burnt at the stake. "But I have been wishing for naught / even my transient moment of light / has been plundered away for laughs. / Just look at this comical play! / In that case, I shall be a real witch to eternally curse this world."
Meaningful Name: Both Elise and Therese take their name from "Für Elise" ("Therese" coming from the hypothesis that the name of the piece was transliterated incorrectly, and that its real name is "Für Therese"), indicating their connection.
The President's Daughter: Elisabeth. It is never stated explicitly so, but if we look through the history, her surname, von Wettin, signs that she comes from the House of Wettin, which is a ruling family in Thurigia, German, at that time.
The Promise: Elisabeth made März promise to her that he'll come back one day, which sadly turns to be an Empty Promise due to his death.
Crosscast Role: Jimangu plays the role of the Landlady, and Yume Suzuki plays both Princes.
Cute and Psycho: Once she's revived, Snow White has no trouble in reveling in her stepmother's torturous death with an Evil Laugh, while the Blue Prince can only look on and wonder what the hell he's gotten himself hitched to.
Determinator: Elisabeth chose death over being tied into a loveless marriage
Dude, She's Like, in a Coma!: Neither the Blue Prince in "Garasu No Hitsugi De Nemuru Himegimi" nor the Red Prince in "Bara No Tou De Nemuru Himegimi" seem to care that their brides to be are comatose, if not outright dead.
Humans Are Morons: Elise stated this clearly in her revenge proposal to Märchen as humans never stop hating everyone.
I Am Song: "Yoiyami No Uta" - or a "I Have No Idea Who I Am" song, rather.
I Gave My Word: Apparently Märchen purposelessly fulfilled his promise as März to Elisabeth when he came to the church. During one of the lives, too, when there's a member introduction, März says to everyone that "März is a man of his word."
I Love the Dead: The Blue Prince has, in Märchen's words, "unusual preferences".
I'm A Humanitarian: The landlady in "Kuroki Okami No Yado" serves up human meat at her inn, although it's largely because there's not much else available.
The Killer Becomes the Killed: Most of the villains (except the lazy stepmother and sister, Alterose, and Elisabeth's brother/father) who made the girls die, in the end gets killed by those girls (or anyone they use to kill back) in various ways.
Our Zombies Are Different: Märchen is basically a type R, brought back into the world only to indulge in his impulses for revenge.
Painful Transformation: If his screams are any indication, then März turning into Märchen probably isn't a very relaxing procedure. The fact that he's integrating Id into himself at the same time doesn't help in the mental aspect.
Roaring Rampage of Revenge: In a manner of speaking. Elise encourages Märchen to take revenge on humanity in general (because they're bastards), which Märchen decides to do by granting the opportunity for revenge to those who've also been wronged in life.
Rock Me, Amadeus!: "Yoiyami No Uta" features a snippet from "Ode to Joy", followed quickly by "Fantaisie-Impromptu" and "Pictures at an Exposition".
Tearjerker: "Takkei no Seijo" and "Gyoukou no Uta". The tears started during Elisabeth and Märchen's reunion, but Märchen's reprise of "This brightly shining era~" in "Gyoukou no Uta" just drove the nail home.
Together in Death: After his untimely death, Märchen and Elisabeth finally meet after Elisabeth is crucified.
Stealth Pun: The notes Elise hums at the beginning of "Yoiyami No Uta" are from "Für Elise". It also plays on Elise's connection to Therese, as it's been suggested that the piece's title is actually a mistranscription of "Für Therese".
Summon Backup Dancers: In the live concerts in a similar vein to Thanatos' in Moira. There's often even one who will dance with Elise in spite of her... motion impairedness (due to being a doll).
Vocaloid: Elise's singing voice is provided by Hatsune Miku.
Widow Witch: The "Witch" in "Kakei No Majo" - not that she hasn't done bad things in the past.
Wicked Stepmother: Schneewittchen's and the well girl's step mother fell into this category. The Landlady could fall into this category too, or maybe not
Woman Scorned: More like Doll Scorned for that couple of seconds in Elise's case.