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DeadSet Records 12/05

EVANESCENCE ‘Synthesis Live’

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Back in 2003, a female fronted band broke the world of rock with a new take on gothic music. That band was Evanescence. Since that point, they have been a front-runner on the music scene who have captured the hearts of fans all over the world. With three full studio albums under their belt, the band took a 6-year hiatus to focus on themselves and their families only to come back with something even more special. Last year the band came back together to create “Synthesis” which took the best of their back catalogue and updated those tracks with the backing of an orchestra and blended that with the sound of synthesisers. The result was something that took the music world by storm. On the back of the successful release of this, the band decided to hit the road and tour with this new sound. For those unable to make this exciting run of shows, a DVD has been made to show the magnificence of what Evanescence have accomplished.

The Synthesis tour took the band back to basics without an over the top show but allowed the audience to enjoy the band in its simplest glory. With the orchestra seated across the back of the stage and the band sat amongst them Amy Lee took centre stage. Coming into a dark stage with just a spotlight she sits behind her piano and plays the intro into “Overture” alone. The joy of watching the DVD compared to seeing it live is being able to see in close detail the sheer talent of Lee. From her fingers working across the piano keys to the pure emotion, her facial expressions show while she sings. These are the parts that you can’t always capture while sitting in an audience. Lee gives a stand out performance that proves why she stands tall even after taking a back seat for a few years. Her voice is just as powerful as it was back on that very first album and watching her perform tracks such as “Hello” from that album is enough to give you goosebumps. The sheer power of her voice during that track and the emotion written all over her face is captivating to watch.

On top of seeing Lee’s performance up close, the cameras allow the audience a closer look at the orchestra led by conductor Susie Seiter as well. Seeing each of the members play their instruments with well-used camera shots allows a closer feel to the performance. It showcases the talent that these performers have and the talent that lays behind each of their instruments. The cameras are able to get up close shots which gives the performance a more dynamic feel while breaking up shots of Lee’s performance. 

The setlist for the show was the entirety of the Synthesis album played in a different order. Each of the songs have been rewritten in a way to incorporate the orchestra to allow the songs to shine in a new way. After hearing them in these new compositions it’s almost difficult to remember them in their original form. With the exception of possibly their biggest hit to date “Bring Me To Life” which is different but just as good in either form. The more haunting tracks such as “My Immortal” are only amplified by having the sounds of strings behind them elevating them to that next level of being eerily beautiful tracks. While the more upbeat songs from the band are elevated by not only the orchestra but the electronic sounds as well. This is just another testament to the band as all the added electronic sounds are added live which can be seen through the cameras. There are no pre-recorded backing tracks but everything is added and played live which may leave the performance open to errors but these are professionals who perform seamlessly.

The DVD captures each moment of perfection laid out by the band. From start to finish it is an extension of the album that brings the audience a step closer to the band.

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