Fans of acts such as The Gathering and Lacuna Coil are sure to encounter a lifelong favorite when experiencing the thrilling musical adventures of Nemesea. Fronted by the stunning Manda Ophuis whose impassioned vocals are wondrous to behold, Nemesea’s brand new recording will be released through Napalm Records worldwide. Entitled The Quiet Resistance, the songs featured within are sure to enchant music aficionados who appreciate all different styles of music. Here is a recent interview we conducted with vocalist Manda to find out more about Nemesea and their inspiring symphonies of rock. Read on…
Introduce yourself; tell me what you do in Nemesea, and how long the band has been together.
My name is Manda. I’m the lead vocalist in Nemesea. The other band members are HJ (guitars), Sonny (bass), Lasse (synths and electronics) and Frank (drums). Nemesea started out as a female fronted rock band in 2003
Where is the band based out of and what is your local music scene like?
We are all from Holland; three of us are living up in the north and the other two are living in the west part of Holland. The local music scene is pretty diverse. We have a typical rock, metal scene, a jazz scene and lots of electronic music. Next to that lot’s of mainstream pop/ Britpop bands are up and coming. There are a couple of genres coming from the Netherlands that are very popular internationally though. Next to the female fronted rock bands (Within Temptation, The Gathering, Epica) for example the dance and trance acts. Holland has produced some of the biggest DJ’s in the world like Tiësto and Armin van Buren.
Is there any story or concept behind the CD title The Quiet Resistance?
The Quiet Resistance is the resistance you can feel within. At those moments you just want to speak your mind and be very honest. We’ve had those moments in the past ourselves and I used them as an inspiration to write the lyrics for this album. TQR is a title that covers the themes in all the songs.
Select two songs from The Quiet Resistance and what inspired the lyrics.
I don’t like talking about my lyrics too much, because I feel that people should find their own story behind the words. But I will tell you a little bit about Caught in the Middle. Caught in the Middle was written at a time in my life things didn’t look good for Nemesea. We had a rough time and it was hard to find the strength and belief to continue. But at the end I felt this was the only way to go for me. That’s what inspired me to write this lyric; no matter how hard it is sometimes, being in the band and singing is the only right thing for me to do.
What could one expect from a live Nemesea show?
Has Nemesea played here in the States or plan to do so in the future?
Unfortunately we have never played in the States before but that would be awesome!
Being from the Netherlands, have you ever met Anneke Van Giersbergen or any of the members of The Gathering and have they been an influence on your band at all?
I myself have always been a great fan of Anneke and the Gathering. As a matter of fact Anneke is the reason I started singing. I really love her voice. I’ve been to shows of the Gathering many times but have never actually met Anneke.
A few months ago we supported the Gathering during a show here in Holland. That was really great. Siljé is also an amazing vocalist. It was nice sharing the stage with them.
What was the experience like working with Sellaband when trying to finance your previous CD In Control?
We as a band like to be creative and innovative and Sellaband seemed to be a really nice challenge at that time. It was new and different. It was an amazing roller-coaster ride with a lot of ups but unfortunately more downs. The positive thing about Sellaband was the we had a proper budget to spend on our new album and we got the chance to work with some amazingly talented and well-known people like Tony Platt (Iron Maiden, AC/DC) and Ronald Prent (Rammstein, Lacuna Coil).
How did you wind up signing to Napalm Records?
It’s really hard nowadays to find a dedicated record company that believes in you so when Napalm Records showed interest in us that was amazing. We feel that we have found a great partner in Napalms Records and there’s a lot of mutual respect and confidence.
How frustrating was it to wait four years to record new material?
Haha…really frustrating! We’ve always been working on new material so the positive side to this was that we had already a lot of songs ready. We picked the best ones for TQR to make sure to deliver a killer album after so many years!
You have such an outstanding singing voice! Have you had any vocal training and who are some of her favorite singers?
Thank you. Yes, I did have vocal training and I’m still taking singing lessons and speech therapy. I want to know and learn as much as possible about my instrument. I graduated from the conservatory in 2004 during and after which I developed many different techniques. I took classical singing lessons and developed my belting technique which I use a lot in Nemesea. I listen mainly to pop and rock singers. For example Kelly Clarkson, Christina Aguilera and Lara Fabian. I love their powerful voices and the emotion they are able to carry out. Also Jared Leto is a big inspiration for me. He sings so theatrical and with so much power. And of course he’s extremely yummie 🙂
Why are there cactus on the cover of The Quiet Resistance? We definitely have cactus in California and Arizona, but are they plentiful over in the Netherlands?
The cactus is a symbol of patience/ persistence. No cactus in the Netherlands, it’s not the suitable habitat. We have them in certain zoo/ parks though 🙂 so we know what they look like 🙂
Awesome cover art by the way! Who did the artwork and how much input did you have on it?
Thanks! The artwork was done by Stefan Heileman from Germany. He’s done a lot of artwork for band like Epica and Leave’s Eyes. Stefan did a great job putting Napalm Records wishes and ours into one piece of art.
What was it like working with Charlotte Wessels of Delain on High Enough and how did she become involved with the project?
Charlotte is a really nice person and a great singer. We’ve played with Delain a couple of times and when HJ wrote High Enough he immediately thought of asking Charlotte to add her voice to this song. Both voices blend really well, we are very proud of the outcome.
How did Joost van den Broek of After Forever wind up producing the album and what was it like working with Joost?
We know Joost from our time as support act for After Forever and HJ’s been doing some other project with him before they started working on Nemesea. Joost is an amazing musician but also a great producer and mixer. Working with him was the right thing to do since he helped us lifting TQR to a higher level. Furthermore, his skills and Lasse’s knowledge of electronics gave this album its special sound.
Any messages for Nemesea fans here in the States?
We hope to come to the States soon to share our music with all of you live on stage! In the meantime make sure to go and check out The Quiet Resistance! Available in the USA November 22nd!
Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions! Hope to see your band perform here in the Los Angeles area someday!
You’re welcome! Let’s keep our fingers crossed!!!
(Interview by Kenneth Morton)
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