[[caption-width-right:330:Dammit, Aurora, it's hot out here. Sink this motherfucker and let's get back to rocking.]]

-> ''"Right after ''Deggial'' I had ideas for a new album, but one day I woke up and felt I needed to make a Nordic concept album for some reason."''
--> -- Christofer Johnsson on the origin of ''Secret of the Runes''

Therion is a SymphonicMetal band from Sweden. They are considered the TropeMaker and TropeCodifier for the genre. They are also considered one of the {{Trope Codifier}}s for AvantGardeMetal.

Originally formed in 1987 by bassist/vocalist Christofer Johnsson as a DeathMetal band named Blitzkrieg, they split up after only two shows but were soon reformed under the name Megatherion, after the album ''To Mega Therion'' by Music/CelticFrost. Johnsson switched from bass to guitar and the band went through some lineup changes, and the name was shortened to Therion.

The band recorded two demos, an EP, and three albums in the DeathMetal style, with their second and third albums showing some experimental tendencies, such as the inclusion of keyboards and [[SopranoAndGravel classically-trained singers]]. Their fourth album, ''Lepaca Kliffoth'', switched to a more ThrashMetal-influenced style with Johnsson changing his vocal style from death growls to a higher-pitched shout. The album also featured classical singers once again and had more prominent keyboards.

Therion's fifth album, ''Theli'', is the point at which the band became full-blown SymphonicMetal, with two choirs providing most of the vocals and complex keyboard parts used to simulate an orchestra. The band has continued refining this sound throughout the years, using live orchestras on most subsequent albums.

Most of Therion's lyrics deal with occultism, religion, and mythology, and are written by Thomas Karlsson, head of the occult order Dragon Rouge, of which Johnsson is a member. However, Karlsson has never been an official band member.

The band's discography is as follows:

* ''Paroxysmal Holocaust'' (demo, 1989)
* ''Beyond the Darkest Veils of Inner Wickedness'' (demo, 1989)
* ''Time Shall Tell'' (EP, 1990)
* ''Of Darkness...'' (1991)
* ''Beyond Sanctorum'' (1992)
* ''Symphony Masses: Ho Drakon Ho Megas'' (1993)
* ''The Beauty in Black'' (single, 1995)
* ''Lepaca Kliffoth'' (1995)
* ''The Siren of the Woods'' (single, 1996)
* ''Theli'' (1996)
* ''A'arab Zaraq Lucid Dreaming'' (compilation album featuring B-sides, covers, a re-recording of an early song, and a soundtrack Christofer composed for an art film, 1997)
* ''Eye of Shiva'' (single, 1998)
* ''Vovin'' (1998)
* ''Crowning of Atlantis'' (EP featuring unreleased songs, covers, and live tracks, 1999)
* ''The Early Chapters of Revelation'' (boxed set of first three full-length albums, 2000)
* ''Deggial'' (2000)
* ''Secret of the Runes'' (2001)
* ''Bells of Doom'' (compilation featuring rare tracks from the band's Blitzkrieg days and early Therion demos, 2001)
* ''Live in Midgård'' (2-disc live album, 2002)
* ''Lemuria/Sirius B'' (double studio album, sometimes each disc is sold separately, 2004)
* ''Atlantis Lucid Dreaming'' (''Crowning of Atlantis'' and ''A'arab Zaraq Lucid Dreaming'' packaged together, 2005)
* ''Celebrators of Becoming'' (boxed set with four [=DVDs=] of live shows, music videos, and behind-the-scenes footage, plus two live [=CDs=], 2006)
* ''Wand of Abaris/Path to Arcady'' (single, 2007)
* ''Gothic Kabbalah'' (two-disc studio album, 2007)
* ''Live Gothic'' (live album on one DVD and two [=CDs=], 2008)
* ''The Miskolc Experience'' (live album on one DVD and two [=CDs=], featuring a live orchestra, 2009)
* ''Sitra Ahra'' (Studio album, 2010)
* ''Les Fleurs du Mal'' (Studio album, 2012)

The band's current lineup is:

* Christofer Johnsson (guitars & keyboards, formerly vocals)
* Christian Vidal (guitars)
* Nalle Påhlsson (bass)
* Johan Koleberg (drums)
* Thomas Vikström (vocals)
* Lori Lewis (vocals, originally session/live only but became a full member in 2011)

!!Therion provide examples of the following tropes:

* ArtifactTitle: "The Siren of the Woods" was originally just the song's working title and has nothing to do with the lyrics.
* AudienceParticipationSong: The band often encourages the audience to sing the chorus of "To Mega Therion".
* TheBoardGame: Probably the only metal band to have one: the {{Fantasy}}/{{Steampunk}}[=/=]Myth/{{Norse Mythology}}-based ''011'', featuring player characters based on the band members trying to stop (or cause) TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt.
* BookEnds: ''Les Fleurs du Mal'' begins and ends with two different versions of the same song (not counting the bonus track on the tour edition).
* ConceptAlbum: ''Secret of the Runes'' and ''Gothic Kabbalah''.
* CoverVersion: Tons. The band has covered Music/{{Metallica}}, Music/JudasPriest, Music/JudasPriest covering Music/FleetwoodMac, Music/ThinLizzy, Music/{{Accept}}, Music/{{Venom}}, Music/{{Scorpions}}, Music/IronMaiden, Music/RunningWild, Music/{{Loudness}}, Music/{{Manowar}}, Carl Orff, Music/{{ABBA}}, Music/MercyfulFate, Music/{{Motorhead}}, Music/{{WASP}}, the Russian National Anthem, Music/AntoninDvorak, Music/GiuseppeVerdi, Music/WolfgangAmadeusMozart, Camille Saint-Saëns, Music/RichardWagner, and Music/FaithNoMore (as special guests with Trail of Tears).
** ''Les Fleurs Du Mal'' is an all-out cover album of French ''chansons'' and ''yé-yé'' hits from the 60s and 70s.
* EpicRocking: Numerous examples, but "Adulruna Rediviva" is the band's longest song, at over 13 minutes. "Land of Canaan", the second-longest, is ten and a half minutes.
* [[EverythingSoundsSexierInFrench Everything Sounds Creepier in German]]: The German lyrics to "Prometheus Entfesselt" aren't exactly evil, what with them being about Prometheus in Myth/GreekMythology giving fire to mankind and delivering them from ignorance, but the baritone singing the verses sounds creepy as hell delivering them.
* GenreMashup: Metal meets orchestra.
* HarshVocals: Christofer did them when he still sang. They're still used occasionally.
* HeavyMithril: As most of their songs focus on mythological themes, they definitely count.
* HijackedByJesus: "Birth of Venus Illegitima" takes a tale and a goddess from Myth/ClassicalMythology and weaves in explicitly Christian concepts of sin, sexuality, paradise and Hell.
* IAmTheBand: Averted. Despite Christofer being the FaceOfTheBand and only permanent member, the other members write songs as well.
* LookOnMyWorksYeMightyAndDespair: "Son of the Sun" is about Pharaoh UsefulNotes/{{Akhenaten}}'s attempt to replace the Egyptian gods with monotheistic sun-worship, and [[{{Tragedy}} his ultimate failure and descent into madness as his god abandons him]].
* ManOfAThousandVoices: In addition to his standard style, former vocalist Mats Levén did some really good impersonations of [[Music/{{Motorhead}} Lemmy]] and Music/KingDiamond.
* MetalScream: Mats Levén and Snowy Shaw are masters of this vocal style, especially live. Check out ''Live Gothic'' to see what we mean.
* [[BilingualBonus Multilingual Bonus]]: The band's has lyrics, album titles, and song titles in English, Swedish, Greek, German, Russian, Spanish, Latin, Sanskrit, Akkadian, and Enochian.
** As of ''Les Fleurs du Mal'', they have an ''entire album'' in French.
* NewSoundAlbum: ''Lepaca Kliffoth'' (from DeathMetal to ThrashMetal) and ''Theli'' (from ThrashMetal to SymphonicMetal).
* PowerBallad: "The Siren of the Woods". Also an example of BilingualBonus (it's in Akkadian, although the lyrics have never been published; according to the fan club wiki this is because they're grammatically incorrect) and EpicRocking (it's nearly ten minutes long).
* PunctuatedForEmphasis:
* RockOpera:
** ''Gothic Kabbalah''.
** Christofer says he's been working on a full theatrical "metal rock opera" on and off for around ten years; he's decided to make that the band's main project for the foreseeable future, which means a temporary halt to regular recording and touring.
* StepUpToTheMicrophone: A couple of the band's former drummers have done lead vocals on a few songs, both live and in the studio.
* SymphonicMetal: Therion started as a DeathMetal band, but its style shifted gradually towards symphonic metal, with ''Theli'' usually considered their first symphonic metal album. As this page's introduction says, Therion is considered one of the genre's {{Trope Codifier}}s.
* ViewersAreGeniuses: Good luck trying to figure out what ''Gothic Kabbalah'' is about without looking it up unless you happen to be familiar with the life story of seventeenth-century Swedish esotericist Johannes Bureus.[[note]]It's about Bureus's system of occultism which combines Hermetic Kabbalah with Nordic rune magic.[[/note]] Other songs throughout their career have rather obscure mythological references.
** All things considered, the lion's share of their work is essentially a well-researched musical tour of the mythoi of the world, both ancient and modern. Varied enough to touch on some stories or characters of which listeners were thitherto unaware and educated enough to, more often than not, avoid triteness. Sirius B visits, in order, Russian mystic [[RasputinTheMadMonk Grigori Rasputin]], the Greco-Roman myth of Persephone, Hindu death-goddess Kali, and a heavily-veiled step inside Myth/EgyptianMythology. Raise your hand if you're sufficiently familiar with all of these as to not have to look up lyrics when you hear these songs. ...Yeah, not too many out there.