Photo: Noemi Elias
Punk isn’t dead; Punk died with The Sex Pistols. The argument for and against punk’s continued existence into and past the ‘90s has been made time and time again. The most compelling argument for punk’s continued vitality may come from the most unlikely of places–from a group of Catalonian teenagers on the fringe of adulthood. Mourn formed in Barcelona when a group of teenagers all under the age of 17 began crafting anthemic, guitar-laden rock music in a time where it felt relatively unfashionable to do so. Mourn’s Over the Wall EP proves that these group of wunderkinds have far more than just a passing interest in the noisy ‘80s and ‘90s punk rock that permeates their sound, but an expansive depth of appreciation for the musical traditions that have helped to define their sound.
Over the Wall’s five songs clock in just barely at fifteen minutes, aligning very much with punk fashion’s for delivering powerfully succinct and poignant songs. The EP comprises of covers from punk and post-punk legends Echo and The Bunnymen, The Sound, The Replacements, Hüsker Du, in addition to an outtake from Mourn’s sophomore album Ha Ha He. And while Over the Wall may fundamentally be a cover album, at no time does it ever feel like a soulless attempt to leverage the infamy surrounding some of punk’s modern legends. Rather, Over the Wall feels like the pure embodiment of why punk music originally rose in popularity–to serve as a space for the unheard youth to thrash around in, a space that gave them a compellingly loud voice that in no way could be ignored.
Beyond the clear authentic sentiment emanating from every one of the covers on Mourn’s Over the Wall, the original track “Angines” is perhaps the greatest testament to both Over the Wall and Mourn as a band. Full of expansive, raucous guitars, Carla Vas’ vocals that seem to linger relentlessly despite their hushed nature, and the shouted bursts of disconnected speech allow for “Angines” to exist on equal footing alongside Mourn’s ‘90s post-punk covers. The end result is that Over the Wall feels less like just another cover album but more like a symbolic passing of the baton from ‘90s post-punk greats onto Mourn.