The Greek Theatre
Sunday, October 15, 2017
Singer, songwriter, front woman and force of nature Amy Lee thanked her audience for sticking by Evanescence’s side all these years and trusting them as she spoke briefly and earlier in their 19-plus song concert at the Greek Theater on October 15. Maybe what she meant was the decision to experiment and try new things musically. Performing with a 28-piece symphony orchestra and her band including lead guitarist/backing vocalist Troy McLawhorn, guitarist Jen Majura bassist Tim McCord and drummer Will Hunt, was definitely a departure from standard and traditional route for a rock show. Though many groups (i.e. Metallica) have done that to great effect and have been highly successful at it. Now, Evanescence is throwing their proverbial hat in the ring and giving it a more modern twist and update with a foray into electronic and programmed music. Lee herself pointed it out it is something she has always wanted to do. She also commented it was the first time the band ever performed music from a new album before it was released, too.
Evanescence is currently on tour to support “Synthesis” due out on November 10. It’s been touted as “not simply a greatest hits” album but one that takes a selection of Evanescence’s three previous studio releases along with two new songs, “Imperfection and “Hi-Low.” which was performed live for the first time, and reimagines them with brand-new recordings.
The dramatic wall of sound centerpiece is Lee’s powerful, emotive and operatic vocals which remain at the forefront. They are the heart and soul of the band. Her singing is as majestic and exquisite as ever. The gifted and talented multi-instrumentalist is also renowned for her commanding and consummate piano playing. Pain, grief, love, agony, loss, relief, joy are hallmark themes and touchstones of the goth-inspired metal/rock melodies and power the group’s most famous and influential ballads. Several concertgoers held up their cell phones in unison to video Lee onstage singing in an elegant long dress that fit the regal ambiance that goes along with having a symphonic orchestra perform.
As Evanescene’s celebrates 20-plus years as a commercial and critical presence in rock music, it’s only natural they are looking for new avenues and directions to take their sound to make it relevant, fresh and exciting. Adding an electronic element and a full symphonic orchestra gives it more dimension, textures and changes the arrangements enough to make them sound different. Though at times, the orchestra drowned out Lee’s singing and overpowered the music in a way that didn’t necessarily improve upon it, and instead, just detracted from it. The quieter and subtler interludes in the show were some of the best moments when the orchestra slightly accented the arrangements and provided more nuanced accompaniment. The true power of the material remained intact undiminished and still memorable.
Never Go Back
End Of The Dream
My Heart Is Broken
Bring Me to Life
Lost In Paradise
Speak To Me