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Nemesium – Continua

Nemesium
Continua
by Gary G. Hernandez at 14 July 2020, 4:35 PM

NEMESIUM, apart from being the genitive plural of “nemesis” in Latin, is a five-piece Extreme Metal band out of Geelong, Australia. They formed in 2014 (though their inception dates as far back as 2010) and released their debut EP, “Sentient Cognizance,” in 2015. On June 12, 2020 they issued their first full-length album, “Continua,” on Black Lion Records. It immediately jumped to the number one spot on Australia’s Independent Music Charts. This band came out of the womb not only walking but wielding a big ass crowbar that it beat other bands into submission with.

First, this album is a bit of a behemoth with 12 tracks and a runtime of close to 49 minutes. Granted, three of these tracks are interludes, but still. Also, one track, “Annihilation Prophecy,” is a retake from their EP, but it is an amazing track and deserves the respawn. The album has reputedly taken years to get out (the drum track being laid as early as 2018) with lineup challenges as well as more recent global upheavals. All this strife seems to be reflected in the theme of the album which centers on overcoming struggle.

Although NEMESIUM is often billed as a Death Metal band, they’re clearly influenced by other subgenres musically as well as lyrically — for instance they have an underlying Black Metal vibe and many of the lyrics (mostly penned by Clint Williams) are more akin to sci-fi Stoner Metal. This hybrid approach is more of a strength than a weakness. You get the sense that the band is more about just blasting some ferocious metal as opposed to adhering to some unwritten subgenre guidelines.

The digital version kicks off with an 80-second sample from a sci-fi/horror film complete with hysterical ranting and foreboding proclamations. Following come three full tracks, an interlude, three more tracks, one more interlude, then the three final tracks. With this pattern, it’s hard not to impose some sort of narrative whether it was intended or not. In fact. the band has stated that the vinyl release will differ from the digital by stripping out this pattern from the track progression and thus creating a more aggressive feel.

Whereas a lot of Death and Black Metal is characterized by discord, “Continua,” has more of a harmonious, though not necessarily melodic, vibe. We’re talking a clean mix, whole chords, and coherent song progressions . . . but we’re also talking brutal riffing, relentless drumming, and fierce vocals. I’d call standout tracks as “Annihilation Prophecy,” “Virch,” and “The Dawn Of Retribution.” As you might expect, the first proper track, “Archetype,” and the final track, “Relive This Nightmare” are also massive. Unexpected treats include the drum centric “Continuum” and periodic breaks into riffage that recall Power Metal glory days (there is moment in “Annihilation Prophecy” when I swear they are going to launch into “Saints In Hell” by JUDAS PRIEST).

Australia doesn’t get the recognition it deserves when it comes to Metal. It’s almost as if the country is so big that it takes a disproportionate about of wattage to clear the borders. NEMESIUM with its adherence to proficient yet diverse musicianship, complex but unpretentious songwriting, and thought-provoking but accessible lyrics may just have the horsepower needed to break that mold.

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 7
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Antecedent
2. Archetype
3. Boundaryless
4. Annihilation Prophecy
5. Continuum
6. Virch
7. The Fire And The Flesh
8. Cloud Chaser
9. My Final Fight
10. The Dawn Of Retribution
11. All For Them
12. Relive This Nightmare
Lineup:
Justin Rhodes – Drums
Chris McEwin – Guitars (lead)
Andrew Reid – Guitars (lead)
Clint Williams – Vocals
Marcus Ritli – Bass
Record Label: Black Lion Records
     


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Edited 04 August 2020
 

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