It's very rare that I find an album which leaves me completely bowled over on first listen, but Evanescence's "Fallen" is one such release. From the punkish rock of "Going Under" to the gothic-inspired "Whisper", this album never hits a bad note. Evanescence were promoted as a Christian band during their early days and those origins are clear on tracks like "Tourniquet", but don't let that put you off; "Fallen" is a great collection of songs seemingly influenced by almast every genre of music - rock, nu-metal, gothic, classical, punk and even a hint of pop.
Vocalist Amy Lee has one of those voices that only comes along once in a while; haunting, beautiful and melodic. She manages to make every track her own, but really excels on the two ballads "My Immortal" and "Hello". Backed with little more than a piano she is able to demonstrate her full vocal dexterity, and sent shivers down my spine in the process. Meanwhile, on "Bring Me To Life" she is the perfect antithesis to guest singer Paul McCoy's (lead singer of 12 stones, another fantastic group) gravelly, rough voice.
The music itself is no less wonderful. Guitars, drums, keyboards, synthesisers and even violins work in harmony to create highly atmospheric pieces like "Haunted" and "Imaginary". Basically Evanescence are the perfect musical combination; everything comes together in order to make eleven stand-out tracks that will often leave you awestruck.
Some reviewers have compared the group to Linkin Park, but look beyond that and you'll find that Evanescence are so much more. This album will be staying in my CD player for a long, long time...