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A New Constellation

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Album Review

Nahemah's third album, 2009's A New Constellation, reveals that the Spanish group is still seeking new ways to expand death metal's horizons into sonic realms unknown — no mean feat 20 years into the genre's world-wide expansion. But Nahemah seemingly know no other course, launching off a melodic death foundation related to the Gothenburg school that offers some level of familiarity and formal structure, then layering innumerous unexpected sounds and instruments over the top to push it all into the unknown. Whether this be the lush symphonics of "Follow Me," the alt rock angst vocals (clean of course, not cookie) of "Reaching the Stars," and countless post-metal ambient traces found on "Much Us," "The Perfect Depth of the Mermaids," and "The Trip." Getting back to the aforementioned unusual instrumentation, it's nothing outlandish like maracas of didgeridoos, mind you, just non-metallic additions like the sudden saxophone break midway through "Absynthe." the techno synths streaked across "Smoke's Men," and the Farfisa-like organs that make "Under the Mourning Rays" recall vintage Amorphis. If any single parallel can be made, Nahemah frequently resemble Dark Tranquility on a very experimental day at the office; possibly flirting with the emotional pop-prog attempted by bands as diverse as Radiohead, Anathema, and Mogwai, but doing so with too many broad strokes to tie it all together. Nevertheless, the end result is certainly entertaining and intriguing enough to advance Nahemah along on their self-appointed voyage of musical discovery.


Genre: Rock

Years Active:

Not to be confused with French black metal band Nehëmah, Nahemah hails from Alicante, in the southeast corner of Spain, and operates in a hybrid style mixing melodic death metal of the Swedish school (Dark Tranquility, Opeth) with traditional rock songwriting elements, and a progressive, cinematic ambience inspired by the likes of Mogwai and Isis. Formed in 1997, the group patiently formulated their complex sound before bringing it to the public via 2001's Chrysalis...
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A New Constellation, Nahemah
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