Monday, March 26, 2012


Evanescence is the band no one would guess I listen to. It's the "Find the one that's different" in my music collection. As a general rule I don't listen to that style of music, and the first two times I heard their songs I was totally not interested. No, what brought me around was the lyrics. Song lyrics in a friend's chat status that so completely impressed me I had to hear the song.
You don't remember me, but I remember you.
I lie awake at night and try so hard not to think of you.
But who can decide what they dream? and dream I do.  - Taking Over Me
The song starts with piano, effectively catching me off guard with the drums and electric guitar that start mere seconds later. But by then I'm already trapped... her use of minor, chord changes, and harmonies is a feast for the ears. In fact, often the rock elements add to the song, rather than get in the way by being distracting. And, of course, Amy's voice is gorgeous.

I was thoroughly snared when I heard the song "My Immortal." The version I heard had no drums or electric guitar at all, putting it in the class of songs I usually listen to, and allowing me to become completely captivated without having to subject myself something I usually didn't like at all. In fact, I loved this song so much that I later went on to do a harp cover, successfully imitating the piano part through most of the song. It's the most accurate reproduction of a song I've ever done. There was nothing I wanted to change, or improve on, so the arrangement is virtually the same.

For a whole summer I listened to Evanescence while delivering pizza. I had only one album by them: "Fallen." Finally one day I ventured onto Youtube to see if they had written anything else, and I discovered their demo album "Origin." "Origin" is still my favorite album of theirs. I wish it were easier to get copies of. Many of my favorite songs are from there; "Field of Innocence", "Listen to the Rain", and "Lies".

And then, oh then there was my science fiction novel, recently re titled "The Justice Project". I was doing massive revisions at the time I rediscovered Evanescence, and so that was all I listened to for a solid months while I revised. Somehow, by the time I reached the end of the project I discovered that the songs and the tone of her style had somehow engrained themselves into the very fabric of the story.
Please don't be afraid
When the darkness fades away
The dawn will break the silence
Screaming in our hearts. - Understanding
For the first time I had a novel with a theme song. Then I had characters with theme songs. Then I had songs for the ending scene... the final playlist came to a total of five songs. "Field of Innocence"(Kaylee's Song), "Lost in Paradise"(Dorus's Song), "My Heart is Broken"(Dorus's Ending), "My Last Breath"(Kaylee's Ending), and "Understanding"(Finale/Theme).

Other favorite songs include "Like You", "Bring Me to Life", and "Hello". Obviously I got past my usual dislike of rock music, and became completely obsessed. The question is, why? Besides their obvious talent, what makes this group so remarkable, and what do I personally see in it?

Music is a powerful tool, and this band knows how to use it in ways that many never seem to realize. Specifically, the lyrics are absolutely amazing. There are lines that never cease to move me, no matter how many times I've heard them.
I'm so tired of speaking words that no one ever hears.
Is it clear enough that you can't live your whole life all alone?
I can hear you in a whisper but you can't even hear me screaming
. - Where Will You Go?
I've never studied the life of Amy Lee, the lead singer and songwriter, but I wouldn't be surprised to find that she writes from her own experience. There is something so real about these songs. They are not proud or self-centered. They are not juvenile demands for attention. They are not shallow or coarse. They are hopeless, heartfelt pleas for help and salvation. They are songs of love and death, of loss and longing. They are so beautiful and so poignantly sad. These are the songs in the heart of every rebellious teenager. They are more than songs; they are prayers. They are the agony in the eyes of everyone who says they're fine; begging you to look behind the walls they've put up and see the truth. They are a final request for something eternal to hold onto.
Now that I know what I'm without you can't just leave me here.
Breath into me and make me real; bring me to life.
Wake me up inside, wake me up inside,
call my name and save me from the darkness.
Bid my blood to run, before I come undone.
Save me from the nothing I've become. - Bring Me to Life

1 comment:

  1. I really like their song My Immortal, but haven't heard many of the others.