Dennis : The Swedish melodic death metal band Mourning Sign started in 1992 in the town of Hallstahammer and released a self-titled debut album in 1994 followed up by a second album named ‘Multiverse’ before disbanding in 1997 without really leaving an impression on the scene. In 2016, almost twenty years after the bandmembers buried their band, the grave was reopened and the Mourning Sign was resurrected by founding members Kari Kainulainen (guitars/vocals), Petri Aho (guitars) and Thomas Gardh (bass). After releasing the singles ‘Nest of Vipers’ and ‘Homage To a Dying World’ at the end of last year, the band signed a record deal with the American label Orchestrated Misery Records for the release of the new material they had written as a full studio album.
‘Contra Mundum’ (which in Latin stands for defying of opposing everyone else) is the album title of their first record in two decades time, their third in total. Mourning Sign always had some kind of progressive influences in their music and this time around this is no different. Progressive and melodic death metal is the trademark of Mourning Sign, with playful melodies and melodic guitarwork of Kainulainen and Aho that is backed up by dark keyboard tunes here and there. The vocals sound very raw, mostly death grunts but also some clean vocals, for instance in ‘‘Nest of Vipers’ and a choir can also be heard in the song ‘Sights of Woe’. The ten tracks on ‘Contra Mundum’ are quite enjoyable melodic and progressive death metal songs but the production isn’t the strongest asset of this release since the material sounds somewhat like a demo recording.