Evanescence — "Evanescence" Album Review
Mon, 10 Oct 2011 09:13:47
Evanescence truly come to life on their self-titled third full-length album.
There's a pronounced vitality surging through these twelve songs, rising from the band's willingness to go out on a musical limb. Certainly, hallmarks of the Evanescence sound remain intact—swirling synths, anthemic choruses, and heavy riffs—but the quintet never plays it safe, and that's why Evanescence remains their best album to date and a new classic.
A classic orchestral hum ignites "The Change" as frontwoman Amy Lee declares the end of a love she can't bear to quit announcing, "Say you love me, but it's not enough".
Lee opens up more than ever before as she seamlessly segues from symphonic hypnosis on the verses to stadium-filling choruses. There's a theatrical undercurrent flowing beneath Lee's words that ebbs and flows with Terry Balsamo's entrancing guitar and Tim McCord's bass chug. The keyboards entwine with the vocals for pure rock gold.
On "My Heart Is Broken", a gorgeous piano intro rises alongside Lee's vibrant vocal delivery as Will Hunt's airtight drumming propels the tune into another realm. Balsamo and Troy McLawhorn's tandem six-string attack builds in unison during a swirling exercise in ethereal heaviness on "The Other Side". The record's centerpiece is the elegantly dark ballad, "Lost in Paradise". It's in "Paradise" that Lee's genius floats to the forefront most prominently. She paints a poignant picture of yearning for redemption from heartache crooning, "We've been falling for all this time and now I'm lost in paradise."
Meanwhile, "Sick" exists on the opposite end of the spectrum. It's a fire starter of a track sharpened with a chaotic metallic edge by Balsamo's bruising. Lee also schizophrenically harmonizes with a raw passion that's impossible not to feel. It's like Korn by way of Depeche Mode.
Everything culminates during "Swimming Home". Electronic production cascades into Lee's impenetrable delivery, oscillating between soaring and sensitive. She channels Portishead with an operatic bravado befitting of a timeless film score. It's an incredible closing moment for Lee and Co.
Evanescence represent modern rock at its finest, and this album is further proof. They manage to experiment while staying unshakably infectious. That's not an easy feat, and few acts manage to do that. Evanescence is spacey, soaring, strong, and utterly alive. 5 out of 5 stars
Have you heard Evanescence yet?
Watch our See The Music segment with Amy discussing the meaning of "What You Want"!
Also, check out our Live Review of Evanescence at the Hollywood Palladium!