(By David ‘Sunshine’ LaMay, Staff Writer, RiffRelevant.com)
What underground metal type doesn’t remember that special little slice of the Swedish metal scene known as the “Gothenburg Sound”?
Raging out into the light in the early ’90’s, this city of Gothenburg sent forth the likes of Dark Tranquility, At The Gates, and the most famous (and radically different now) of the lot, In Flames. This particular sub-genre, from this particular town, built upon the aggressive, yet melodic tendencies fellow Swedes like Entombed, Dismember, and Carnage had previously offered up, but subsequently upped the ante. Everything was faster, catchier, and yet just as voraciously assertive.
Now, for all the attention aimed at this one location, other bands quietly plied the same trade at the same time. Stockholm / Hallstahammar’s Mourning Sign was just such a band. From 1993 to 1996, they managed to release an EP, along with two full-length platters. Sadly, despite being on-par with their Southwestern counterparts, Mourning Sign never broke beyond cult status, and faded away. Until 2013….
Which brings us to the present. Though reformed, revamped, and reloaded, it took until mid-2017 to see new three tracks surface. Then, as 2018 knocked at the door, so too did our subject the two-track EP ‘Homage To A Dying World’.
So what’s going on? Well, I’m glad to share that Mourning Sign is up to the same old tricks that they have always been. Then or now, it makes no difference.
Both the title track and the flip-side ditty “Who Will Crown The King” are unrepentant in keeping that now-classic sound very much alive. The outright speed, lightning riffs, guttural snarling, and harmonies galore are all there. The real surprise is that these tracks are the most vicious of their output to date.
You can only say so much about a pair of songs, so I’ll make this closing sentiment as brief as possible. Most of us likely missed this excellent band the first time ’round, so don’t let it happen again.
Pick up Mourning Sign’s latest little taster, and then immediately fatten things up with the other three aural assaults from the new line-up. All are available now at Bandcamp (streaming below). It/they will make 1995 feel like it was only a few yesterdays away.
Mourning Sign is:
- Kari Kainulainen – Guitar and Vocals
- Petri Aho – Guitar
- Thomas Gardh – Bass