Originally released on Mega Records except for tracks 2, 4 & 5.
Ace Of Base was nominated for Best New Artist, "The Sign" was nominated for Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal, and THE SIGN was nominated for Best Pop Album in the 37th Annual Grammy Awards.
"Everyone, everywhere! Dance or fade out..." the voice commands on "My Mind (Mindless Mix)," one of a dozen standout dance tracks on this chart-topping debut from Sweden's Ace Of Base. THE SIGN is just that, a '90s disco celebration from Scandanavia that takes hip-hop to be an international cipher for dance music. By blending cool European techno sounds with hip-hop and reggae dance beats, Ace Of Base have developed a provocative new pop style that might one day put them in a league with platinum perennials like Abba.
That Ace Of Base's celebratory club sounds should be emanating from the frozen north of Europe is indicative of the kind of outreach American popular music has always enjoyed. In this case, Ace Of Base's Linn, Jenny and Joker came from a musical family in Gothenburg, affectionately known by its citizens as the `Liverpool of Sweden.' They all studied classical music as children. Linn and Jenny went on to sing in church choirs, while brother Joker became fascinated with vintage analog synthesizers, which brought him in contact with fellow keyboardist Buddha.
The sounds Ace Of Base portray on THE SIGN recall the synth-flavored dance tracks of the disco era, when European electronic bands like Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream enjoyed an enormous popular revival. A tune like "Happy Nation" most nearly depicts the native Swedish roots of Ace Of Base's sound, but otherwise the imprint of the American club scene is everywhere. "Voulez-Vous Danser" echoes the bumptious sound of C & C Music Factory, although Linn and Jenny's vocal harmonies put a decidedly pop spin on an R&B groove. Likewise their mega-hit "All That She Wants," where Linn's icy demeanor undercuts her tale of longing, as synthesizers evoke tropical vistas of Jamaican beaches and reggae bass lines.