According to their website, Nemesea’s previous album (The Quiet Resistance) “offers intense and soulful alternative rock complete with a subtle breath of gothic and loudly demands the attention the band undoubtedly deserves.”
Beginning life in 2002 as a symphonic metal act, comparable to After Forever, their newest offering “Uprising” takes a decidedly different approach. Still relying heavily upon the vocal talents of singer Manda Ophuis, they have replaced much of the strong bass lines and rock/metal guitar work with a far more electro-heavy repertoire and I am not sure that it has paid off.
The opening track maintains the kind of guitar-based rock we have come to expect from them, but the remainder of the tracks on Uprising (including the single, Twilight) have a decidedly poppy feel to them. Sounding increasingly like a cross between Evanescence and Paramore minus the punky edge, they appear to have foregone their metal roots in favour of crowd-pleasing, emotive anthemic tracks with the kind of heartfelt-yet-overly-simplistic lyrical style which will guarantee them hours of airplay on the right music stations but at the cost of their artistic integrity. Forever is possibly the best example of this, opening with a Casio-style keyboard that is straight out of a 90’s dance track before launching (somewhat incongruously) into a more recognisable, symphonic metal chorus.
Let it Burn continues this trend, the opening vocals threatening to launch into either girl-fronted House music or an All Saints reprise. Alas they do neither and return to the same, emotionally fraught chorus as the other tracks.
Time to Make it returns us to something closer to what we have come to expect from the band, but it is let down by weak lyrics.
Overall, nothing about this album is ‘bad’ per se. They have a cornucopia of stadium-filling tracks and sing-along choruses guaranteed to appeal to the teenage market, but if you are looking for something left-field, innovative or simply more interesting (both musically and lyrically) then I would look elsewhere.