Nemesea - Mana

Year of Release: 2004
Label: Ebony Tears
Catalog Number: ET006
Format: CD
Total Time: 46:32:00

It seems nowadays The Netherlands is taking the leading role in brining forth excellent gothic/atmospheric metal bands. After bands such as The Gathering, Within Temptation, After Forever, Epica and Autumn, we can welcome yet another new, very talented band: Nemesea, a band from the north of Holland. This band was founded in 2002 and in 2003 they already toured with After Forever, as their support act, which enabled them to build up a great live reputation. The Dutch label Ebony Tears (amongst others of Imperia and The Wounded) gave this band the opportunity to record their skills on a silver disc.

That was a very good move, because after the first time listening to the album, I had only one reaction: WOW! What an impressive debut album has Mana turned out to be. And the album is close to perfection. I noticed gothic bands devote much attention to their releases, both sound wise as well as artwork and Nemesea is not different.

The vocals of Manda Ophuis, a Conservatory graduate, are crystal clear and just great to listen to. Fortunately she does not sing as high as some singers in the genre do, something my ears are thankful for. The arrangements of the songs are well worked out and result in strong, melodious, atmospheric songs, where the metal does not dominate, but forms a consistent whole with the orchestrations.

The band members show they are very skilled musicians, but their fantastic play on the album, and everything is, executed perfectly. On the right places, choir and strings are mixed in. Of course these belong on a gothic metal album, but make no mistake by throwing Nemesea on the great heap of gothic metal bands! They are absolutely different than the aforementioned bands and show they do not depend on others, but choose their own path.

Remarkable is the absence of grunts on the album. There are male vocals on the album, those of Hendrik Jan de Jong, but this enhanced the dark atmosphere, yet at no time you hear grunts or screams. And notwithstanding the fact Ophuis' vocals are beautiful, they form a whole with the rest of the band, and the vocals and the music are one.

The album is produced by guitar player Hendrik Jan de Jong and I was baffled, such a perfect production is not expected from a young, relatively inexperienced guitarist. I know very few bands that left a better calling card than Nemesea. Mana is an album you simply MUST have. Even if gothic metal is not your thing, you still need to get this album, as it is simply an amazing album filled with melody and atmosphere.

Nemesis / Threefold Law / Empress / Angel In The Dark / ?Mortalitas / Part I - The Taker / Part II - Dies Irae / Part III - Moriendum Tibi Est / Part?IV?- From?Beneath?You?It?Devours / Lucifer / Disclosure / Beyond Evil / Cry

Manda Ophuis - vocals
Hendrik Jan de Jong - guitars
Martijn Pronk - guitars
Bert Booijnk - keyboards
Sonny Onderwater - bass
Chris Postma - drums

Mana (2004)

Genre: Progressive-Power Metal

Origin NL

Added: January 17th 2005
Reviewer: Marcel Haster
Artist website:
Hits: 924
Language: english


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