In Control



by Malen USER (36 Reviews)
April 1st, 2024 | 0 replies

Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Fallenmania, Part 4

Fallemaniacs tend to come in four flavors: symphonic metal bands with nu metal and pop influences, alternative metal bands with symphonic influences, artists outside the rock world that still borrow some of Evanescence’s sound and aesthetic and the rare metal bands that clearly a lot to Evanescence, but manage to have a sound of their own. Those won’t appear that often in this series, so today we are looking at a fairly solid example of mostly the first category.

Yes, we’re talking about Nemesea once more. Their second album “In Control” is essentially an electro pop album with a few Fallen-like riffs and vocal melodies, but with a very bright and happy feel. Their new style (which is affected by Meteoramania just as much as by Fallenmania) doesn’t always work, doesn’t always create great songs, but it’s usually fun and catchy. For example, “Lost Inside” has a sort of dark dance beat, it’s very catchy but with a dark undertone. “No More” is the big hit of the album, and it has a really catchy chorus about breaking free from a bad relationship. “Home” starts as a ballad before soaring to a more desperate chorus. “The Way I Feel” is another very good ballad, a duet with a guest singer named Cubworld.

“Like the Air” is the most fallemaniac song, but in a good way, with its darker melodies and instrumentation. “Never” is a heavier song, with a catchy, nervous blend of riffs and industrial sounds, with Manda Ophuis’s voice going from soft to powerful. “Remember” has a similar but even heavier and urgent sound, with Manda’s clear and strong voice singing once more about the end of a bad relationship.

That’s a common theme through the album, for example, on “Broken”, which is very similar to “No More”, but also kind of catchy. That’s one of the songs that doesn’t work as well as the others. “Believe” is an extremely generic song, that sounds like a hundred of other similar rock ballads. The title track sounds like one of the most generic industrial songs ever. Aside from the problems with individual songs, my biggest problem with the album is that it’s clearly going for a pop metal sound, and like a lot of mediocre pop, and many failed attempts at pop metal, it’s fun in a very disposable way. It’s an album you’ll finish quickly, but are not going to find extremely memorable.

But I enjoyed this more than I expected. Most of it is catchy, fun, easy on the ear. The songs are much more solid than on their follow-up “The Quiet Resistance”, and they show some sense of creativity, or at least some good ideas. There are good pop tracks like “No More”, good Evanescence-inspired songs like “Never”, “Remember” and “Like the Air”, and very good ballads. “The Way I Feel” is like the duet between Amy Lee and Mike Shinoda that we never got to hear. If I didn’t make that clear already, Manda is a really good singer in her own right, with a beautiful voice, the ability to express so much emotion and to sing almost every genre. This album has a lot of good things to offer.

Of course, I wouldn’t say it was perfect, or that I absolutely loved it. I think you could do better even with fallenmaniac albums. But it’s worth mentioning that Nemesea’s transformation from an Epica-inspired band to an Evanescence clone paid off. Yes, I wish they had made more albums like “Mana”, but they have been doing stuff like “In Control” for years now, and maybe they’re happier that way. They’ve also found a bigger audience. Seeing how easily they’ve remade themselves as a poppy alternative metal band, it would be easy to dismiss them as trend-hoppers: they made a symphonic metal album when it was the next big thing, then they turned into fallenmaniacs when it was more profitable. This is what keeps me from really calling myself a Nemesea fan. But it’s worth mentioning that they made an actual career out of being the next Evanescence, and they are good enough to have stood the test of time. I couldn’t say the same for a lot of other albums in this series.

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user ratings (16)
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Trey STAFF (3.5)
Forget about the gothic rock designation attached to this band. In Control is nothing less than emot...

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