Monday, August 12, 2019

Album Review: Fallen by Evanescence

Today's album is Fallen by Evanescence. It came out on March 4, 2003, the day before my birthday. It would be over ten years before I first listened to it in high school, though. I never had a proper goth or emo phase, but if I did this album would have probably been at the center of it. Evanescence was recommended to me by a cute girl in my high school chemistry class, which is a surefire way to get interested in a band. She also recommended Killswitch Engage, which I never really connected with, and Halestorm, which I still listen to today.

Later that year I recorded a cover of "My Immortal", the fourth track off Fallen, with a friend of mine. That cover was never released as far as I know, but it was one of the first times I recorded myself playing drumset. Two years later, while moving out of the bedroom in which I recorded that cover, I sat on my bed listening to the physical CD for the first time, which I had just bought along with Metallica's S&M. On the first day, I broke the CD case, so the disc doesn't quite sit right in there. When I opened the case today, little bits of plastic from all those years ago fell out into my lap.

Wikipedia describes Fallen as nu metal, alternative metal, and goth metal. When I listen, however, I don't really hear a genre. I hear a band with a sound that nothing else I've heard quite compares to. I've always preferred clean vocals over screaming, and Amy Lee's voice is possibly the most beautiful in metal. I love the flowing melodies and vocal harmonies sitting above the heavy driving rhythm section. I often like to say that metal is a style of music for people who love music, and I think Fallen is a good example. The album features strings, a choir, and electronic sounds along with the core rock band- and it all works. If metal is about sounding big and impressive, Evanescence absolutely wins at metal in my opinion. If I had to mention one flaw, however, I might say that the album feels a bit over-produced.

From song to song, Fallen is  one of those albums that really sounds cohesive. There are no filler songs, and each track sounds like its contributing something to a greater whole, kind of like movements in a symphony. These are the best kinds of albums in my opinion, the ones that sound best when you listen to them straight through in one sitting. I've actually probably listened to Fallen straight through more often than I've listened to most of the songs on their own. The only exception is "Bring Me To Life", which I play on guitar pretty frequently. I know it's a meme song these days, but I don't really care.

I give Fallen three stars out of five, and my favorite track is "Going Under".

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