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Nemes - 865 Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 5
Musicianship 7
Lyrics 7
Production 5.5
Creativity 8
Lasting Value 6.75
Reviewer Tilt 8.5
Final Verdict: 68%
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Inside AP.net

Nemes - 865

Reviewed by: Thomas Nassiff (06/22/10)
Nemes - 865
Record Label: Unsigned
Release Date: July 10, 2009


Music, just like all other forms of art, requires inspiration. Musicians have to be inspired by something - a person, a place, a thing, an event, whatever - to write songs. Music, more so than other art forms, in my opinion, also relies heavily on influence. Musicians are quick to cite influences on their own sound and praise the bands who are part of the reason for their being. Sometimes I'll listen to an older record (let's take Enema of the State as an example), and I'll just think about the ripple effect that record had in music. How many garage bands did Blink 182 spawn? How many kids got together in their basements for the sole purpose of learning to play "Dumpweed"?

This week, while writing an argument for the Ocean Avenue "Sophomore Slump" feature, I thought about how Yellowcard didn't really have much of a ripple effect on the scene. How many bands do you see running around with electric violins on stage? I always thought in high school that Yellowcard would surely spawn such a craze; maybe they called it quits before they had an opportunity to, maybe it was never meant to happen. Either way, the next day I got Nemes' 865 in my mailbox and popped it into my laptop, and the first thing I heard was a winding violin introduction. After setting aside my feelings of excitement and my paranoid thoughts about how strange of a coincidence this was, I took some time to listen to the Worcester, Massachusetts quintet's debut EP and came away impressed.

Nemes (pronounced nee-miss, as the band let you know repeatedly on their Myspace page), take an earnest pop punk sound and infuse it with a violin, but just because the string instrument is heard on every track on 865 doesn't mean that fans longing for the days of Yellowcard should get excited just yet. While Yellowcard often made the violin the center of attention and built around it, producing poppy melodies that were easy to swallow, Nemes work the opposite way by piecing together their rough-around-the-edges punk sound first. The violin, although absolutely awesome at parts, at times seems a little forced into the fray. While the violin is what turned my attention to Nemes at first, it becomes clear to the listener that the group have work to do on polishing their sound, a perfectly acceptable flaw in a debut EP.

In the opening track, "Nordic" , Nemes waste no time introducing you to their sound. Passionate vocals and lyrics pepper the EP, as do gang vocals, heavy breakdowns, and occasional background screams. One-liner lyrics are a focal point on 865, as every track has at least one line that will remain in your head well past your first listen. Although the dual vocals of Dave Anthony and Josh Knowles are a weak point for Nemes, they are good enough to put up with while singing back summer-infused lines like "I wrote you a song / Now you owe me a night out" on "Hedwops", one of the standout tracks on the EP. Perhaps the most Yellowcard-influenced track is "Two Weeks", with an introduction that could have fit in well on One for the Kids.

Unfortunately, aside from "Pipe Song" and the hidden acoustic track, Nemes don't show much versatility in their sound. "Pipe Song" is a nice track where the violin fits in well, but the fact that I chose this song as a demonstration of Nemes' versatility ultimately just proves that this group lack any real amount of depth at this point. Their sound is rough and unpolished, and the guitar parts, while perfect for pop punk songs, could use work as well. However, I can't stress enough how much potential I see in Nemes. In "Stray Cat", a solid guitar riff opens the song into a light-hearted violin, and with better production this song would be great for playing in car stereos in the heat of summer. Nemes, like tons of the bands that influenced them, have potential but are still getting everything figured out.

Recommended If You LikeYellowcard but not really, band names that are words spelled backwards, violins, numbers
Bare Essentials1. Nordic
2. Stray Cat
3. Two Weeks
4. Hedwops
5. Sheep Sheep
6. Pipe Song
7. 7
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Displaying posts 1 - 13 of 13
12:32 AM on 06/23/10
#2
nurfbar
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hah "band names that are spelled backwards". S*m*n.
04:05 AM on 06/23/10
#3
rebeccafrank
Vocals / The Deep North
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i love these boys.

and the "unpolished" aspect of nemes' music is actually part of their charm, in my opinion. it's nice to hear vocals that aren't autotuned or whiny. they've got that Get Up Kids sound going for them and i find it really refreshing in a scene filled with ATL wannabes. plus, they're awesome live.

you're definitely right about their potential. i can't wait to see what they do next.
03:07 PM on 06/23/10
#4
narca9
killed the beast!
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Worcester (and Saint Johns) represent!
03:09 PM on 06/23/10
#5
narca9
killed the beast!
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Also, Pipe Song music video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lx1jNOTYIAg
07:45 PM on 06/23/10
#6
BozzBlonde
adieuxmusic.bandcamp.com
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Just noticed the whole band name spelled backwards thing.
Pretty good band.
09:29 PM on 06/23/10
#7
Thomas Nassiff
resuscitation of the year
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i love these boys.

and the "unpolished" aspect of nemes' music is actually part of their charm, in my opinion. it's nice to hear vocals that aren't autotuned or whiny. they've got that Get Up Kids sound going for them and i find it really refreshing in a scene filled with ATL wannabes. plus, they're awesome live.

you're definitely right about their potential. i can't wait to see what they do next.
I agree, I really liked this record overall. Just have to keep things in perspective, ya know.
03:22 PM on 06/27/10
#8
Five-Star
This Is Your Life
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Love Nemes.
08:18 AM on 07/06/10
#9
mybreakingpoint
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haha what a band name. checking them out based solely on that hahaha
10:03 AM on 07/08/10
luvsickcatalyst
wander eyes, ocean high.
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It took me so long to get their name. It's a little embarrassing. "Nordic" is such a sick song though.
09:15 AM on 07/10/10
spleen
We dance like fucking animals
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hahaha yesterday me and my girlfriend were at our local mall and one of the guys from the band (i think) kept following us and asking us to buy this EP. after a while we finally gave in, and i have to say, its not bad. The guy was a little creepy though...
09:20 AM on 07/10/10
Thomas Nassiff
resuscitation of the year
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hahaha yesterday me and my girlfriend were at our local mall and one of the guys from the band (i think) kept following us and asking us to buy this EP. after a while we finally gave in, and i have to say, its not bad. The guy was a little creepy though...
Haha, that's awesome. I wish shit like that happened to me.
10:06 AM on 07/19/10
chrisitb
nemes.bandcamp.com
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hahaha yesterday me and my girlfriend were at our local mall and one of the guys from the band (i think) kept following us and asking us to buy this EP. after a while we finally gave in, and i have to say, its not bad. The guy was a little creepy though...
had to have been dave, he means well. thanks for checking out the cd!
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