Nemesea – The Quiet Resistance

November 30, 2011 in Reviews by blackwindmetal

The Quiet Resistance

Oh, Holland, how do I love thee?  Home of Epica, Within Temptation, and Delain, amongst many others.

And then there’s Nemesea.

Formed in 2002, this symphonic hard rock-ish act burst onto the scene with their debut, Mana, in 2004, after spending 2003 supporting fellow Dutch metallers After Forever.  Their follow-up, In Control,  which came out in 2007, was largely funded by fan donations totalling around $50,000 – an effort which garnered the band a record deal.  Now, four years later, their third CD, The Quiet Resistance, is making quite a splash on the scene – and I don’t understand why!

I will admit this band never did much for me.  I listened to In Control once or twice, just to say I did, but I wasn’t inspired to keep the songs in my regular rotation at all and I eventually unfollowed them from Twitter.  While I understand why people might like them – they’re accessible, catchy, and not completely awful to listen to – I never understood why people on the interwebs were so ga-ga about them.  Often compared to Within Temptation (which is insulting to Within Temptation), Nemesea belts out rather bland radio-friendly tunes that are neither overly inspired nor particularly exciting.

And The Quiet Resistance continues along in a similar vein.  Opening with a breathy male whispering “I dug this hole in the back yard/The quiet resistance/I spilled my eyes on the red dress/The quiet resistance”, one couldn’t be faulted for thinking this might be the introduction to the soundtrack of an serial killer movie.  However, after moving into the second track, “Caught in the Middle” and then further through the CD, all we really get treated to is a parade of catchy but lyrically inane offerings.

For instance, from “High Enough”:

Don’t you know
It seems like forever
You belonged to me
Together forever was a promise you let me make

From “If You Could”:

If you could see me
If you could hold me
For one last time
I’ll be OK
But you just left me
You took your chance and slipped away

I could go on, but I’ll spare you.

I don’t know…Perhaps I’ve been overly spoiled with lyrics that really say something, that are really resonant and full of imagery in the music I listen to, to the point of being jaded by anything that remotely sounds like something Bon Jovi would produce.

While vocalist Manda Ophuis is capable enough and can belt out a hooky chorus (“Afterlife” is catchy as hell) as well as some of her more well-known colleagues (Sharon den Adel, Charlotte Wessels), she often in this CD pours on a whiney affect that drove me up the wall.  The aforementioned “If You Could” is one example of where she does this.

The final two tracks on the CD, “2012” and “Allein” are probably the best because they’re a little more experimental with their 80s-ish electronic vibes.  But seriously, the rest of the CD is a snooze-fest.  I’d rather listen to…well, just about anything else.

Allyson’s rating: 1.5/5