Evanescence - Synthesis
Synthesis, noun - the combination of components or elements to form a connected whole.
Having been away from the music industry for some time, you might be surprised to see that Evanescence are still going. Though known more for their gargantuan hit 'Bring Me To Life' from the 2003 Daredevil film, Evanescence are no one-hit wonders and have steadily released albums across the last decade, now deciding to reinvent their well-worn sound and ring life out of older material, with a sprinkle of new, and the addition of an orchestra.
Synthesis starts slowly with 'Overture', a short and succinct track with a stuttering piano-led opening, akin to an orchestra tuning their instruments before the main event. The piano is the instrument of choice for lead singer Amy Lee and its tones are infused throughout the whole album. It's risky for a band to reinvent their sound and change the musical skeleton of their biggest hits but it works here. Listen to the sweeping orchestral flourishes in 'Never Go Back', or the electronic tics in their biggest hit 'Bring Me To Life'. Standout tracks include power ballad 'My Heart is Broken' and 'My Immortal' with its gentle piano and violin accompaniment, its sparse instrumentation taking the listener on an emotional journey.
Emotion is the key feeling throughout this album and the mix of orchestra and Lee's vocals work well together, playing off each other with neither overpowering the other, each simply guiding the other through the musical landscape of the song. Clearly, the live environment is where this album will find its full potential, Lee at her piano stool with the orchestra at her back powering her on to every peak and trough of musical emotion. A masterpiece of voice and melody.