Amaranthe - The Nexus review
|Release date:||March 2013|
03. The Nexus
04. Theory Of Everything
06. Burn With Me
07. Mechanical Illusion
09. Future On Hold
13. Afterlife [Acoustic version] [Digipak bonus]
14. Leave Everything Behind [Early version] [Digipak bonus]
15. Burn With Me [acoustic version] [Japanese bonus]
16. Hunger [acoustic version] [Japanese bonus]
17. Hunger [remix version] [iTunes bonus]
Whether The Nexus is any good heavily depends on what you think of Amaranthe in general and how you approach the album itself, what you value in your music, etc. If you take different approaches to the album, you are going to reach different and somewhat contradicting conclusions. In a way, this album is an oxymoron.
Allow me to elaborate a bit and explore a couple of aspects of this creation. First off, the music. Amaranthe mixes together power metal and metalcore in a highly easygoing fashion. The songs are structurally extremely catchy, predictable, and simple. Same can also be said about the lyrics. Technically, Amaranthe wades more in a no-brainer league than anywhere else. Dig deeper and you'll hit rock bottom in an instant. If you ever required a background with few accompanying mental calories, this is your deal. Seriously.
Secondly, the vocals. Amaranthe have three vocalists in their line up: male screams, clean male vocals, and clean female vocals. I'll be honest, as far as multiple vocalists are concerned, I'm a sucker. I love more than one voice in a song. It settles in a sort of a dialogue and adds different shades to the music. Whether it's strictly necessary is another matter, but I dig the variety offered by the combination. However, if we're to talk about the quality of the vocals, it'll bring us to the next facet.
So, thirdly, the production. The Nexus is, like its predecessor, a heavily over-produced album. It's loud, compressed, thick of sound, and whatever else you might think of when someone labels such sound as modern. Now, the vocals: those also have a rather artificial flavour to them. It doesn't necessarily mean that any of the singers are bad, or that the result is awful. However, it does mean that I have no clue whether any of them can stand their ground properly in a live setting. To some extent I'm also bothered by the artificial electronic overtones that can be heard. So, production-wise this album has a strict factory feeling to it.
Lastly, those of you who liked the début album Amaranthe are probably not going to be disappointed. It's more of the same, so to say, a continuation and non-evolution. So, having more goodness like the début is good news for you. However, all written above, you already know. Or, if you don't, it's high time you face it. Amaranthe is the epitome of pop music in metal. It's a time-out for the insiders, and, possibly, a reasonable gateway for the outsiders as it appears to be heavy and harsh while retaining upbeat simplicity. Anyway, as I said, it's an oxymoron, and I'll honestly take this one over a cheesy flower metal album any day.
Written on 23.04.2013 by
I shoot people.
Sometimes, I also write about it.
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