EVANESCENCE - SYNTHESIS LIVE
The Royal Festival Hall hosted Evanescence to play two sold out shows in support of their fourth studio album Synthesis, a re-imagining of their best-loved songs with the spotlight on live orchestra and electronics combined with Amy Lee's virtuoso piano and voice.
As the lights dimmed, and the crowd roared it was time for the two-time Grammy-award winning Evanescence to take the stage. Lead singer Amy Lee appeared in a lavish gown and quickly took her position centre stage on the grand piano, launching straight into the introduction of Overture backed by 30-ish other musicians including the band and a local orchestra.
In amongst the 30 strong group of musicians there were evidently a couple fans, it was touching to see a sheer look of excitement on their faces as they played and one violinist in particular could not help but quietly sing along.
Lee's stunning voice had developed new nuances, fitting perfectly alongside the classical arrangement. The orchestra did a stellar job and played excellent, clean covers. Unfortunately, during the first half of the set the sheer volume of noise was sometimes overpowering, drowning out Lee's strong vocals. Thankfully, this issue was eventually fixed and Lee stunned the crowd with her overwhelming vocal ability and stage presence.
The set list contained a strong mix of dynamics, including full rock moments. It appeared that a lot of thought had gone into the structure of the set list as to best show off the band's diversity.
All on stage performed well, but it did appear to be the Amy Lee Show as there were multiple moments where drummer, Will Hunt, was not on stage and when guitarists were just sat not touching any strings. In all honesty, sometimes when the guitarist were playing, it barely made a difference within the grand orchestral sweeps.
The audience showed immense affection for Lee, shouting "we love you" at any chance they could get along with cheering widely in-between songs and during every quiet instrumental break.
My Immortal was introduced as a song that has grown on Lee and now represents the strong connection between her, the band's journey and their fans. However, the low-key encore did not quite live up to the expectations of a grand finale, but it seemed the fans were touched by the sentiment and it was nice to see the harpist finally being fully involved in the show after being sat lifeless for much of Evanescence set.
While it was great to see Evanescence in such a dramatic setting, I would appreciate the opportunity to see them to deliver a full rock show as we only caught a glimpse of this during their performance of Bring Me To Life.