Band history

The seeds of Compos Mentis were sown as early as in January 1996 when the band started out as a Metallica jam band. At the time Jesper Heinsvig handled both guitars and vocal, Ryan Kristensen played lead guitar, Andreas Posselt played drums and a short while later Dan Damgaard joined in on bass guitar.

During the following years the band took on a more brutal, yet atmospheric sound after becoming acquainted with bands such as Cradle of Filth, Dimmu Borgir, Dark Tranquillity, In Flames, Withering Surface, Moonspell etc. This was also the time when the band name, Compos Mentis, was adopted.

In the spring of 1999, after having recorded the first demo-cd, "Vulturous", the four-piece decided to adopt another band member, namely Dan's brother Bo Damgaard, who joined in on keyboards. Only a few months later the track "Brave and Lonely" was recorded for the "Extremity Rising Vol. 4" sampler.

In April 2000 a new four track-demo was recorded in the Aabenraa-Studio with Jacob Hansen as producer. The demo was released in the fall of 2000 under the moniker "Quadrology of Sorrow" (available as free download in the "Releases"-section).
"Quadrology of Sorrow" was sent out to tons of labels, magazines, radio stations and concert arrangers and excellent reviews began to roll in - it was even rated as demo of the year by a German magazine (Ancient Spirit). Furthermore a couple of labels approached the as-yet quite young members of Compos Mentis, which resulted in a deal with the American label Lost Disciple Records.

During eight days in the beginning of September 2001 the Aabenraa-studio was once again targeted, and the first full length album, "Fragments of a Withered Dream", was recorded with Jacob Hansen. The album was released through Lost Disciple Records on January 3rd 2003. "Fragments...", too, received great reviews and it was furthermore rated as the second best Danish metal album in 2003 at Danish Metal Awards (DMeA).
The album was also followed by a European tour with the Danish metallers Illdisposed, further extending the band's fanbase.

In the fall of 2005 Compos Mentis recorded the second full-length, entitled "Gehennesis", this time at ZigZound with Ziggy (ex-Hatesphere) as producer. The Danish label Mighty Music was chosen to release the album, which saw the light of day on the 26th of March 2007 in Denmark and on the 18th of June worldwide.
The ambitious lyrical theme of the album as well as a more aggressive and technical sound, complex song structures etc. won over a wide array of new listeners and once again the press overtly praised the album.

Just before the release of "Gehennesis", Ken Holst (guitar) was recruited as a sixth member of the band as Jesper wanted to focus on his vocal duties, especially in the live situation. Following this line-up change Bo Damgaard decided to leave the band after the release of "Gehennesis" and a replacement was found in Rune Klausen in January 2007. As if this wasn't enough, Compos Mentis parted ways with the bassist through more than ten years, Dan Damgaard, in June and hired Claus TÝrnes as his replacement.

The first half of 2008 was spent composing material for the third album, "Our Kingdom of Decay", which was recorded during the summer by Christian Bonde at his CB-studios and subsequently mixed by Jacob "Formanden" Olsen (JBO-sound). The album was released on the 22nd of June in Denmark and online by the Danish indie-label Strange Ears.

"Our Kingdom of Decay" is centered on Denmark (hence the title: Decay is pronounced as DK, the Danish national ISO code) and among other things it digs out several repressed elements from the Danish history, e.g. several attempted assassinations of The Little Mermaid, the nation's worst serial killer (an elderly woman in the 1920's) etc.
Partly due to the new members of Compos Mentis the album is more rock-oriented and straight-forward than the previous albums and as a result of mixing a lot of different elements, the album will without doubt appeal to almost everyone into melodic metal! †