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 Evanescence Live
Webster Hall, NYC






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So even when sales of Fallen slip and Evanescence's star begins to fade, Lee, without naming names, vowed that she would never pull a Jewel and use her natural assets to boost her career.

"Every time a cool rock chick or actress seems to respect themselves as a strong woman, I'm like, 'Yeah!' " she said emphatically. "And I love them, and they're my girls. And then they start to go downhill and people aren't paying attention anymore. So they start stripping their clothes off, because that's all they have left. I swear to everything I've ever known, I will never do that."

Given Evanescence's trajectory thus far, it's a crossroads Lee won't face for some time.

"Wow, three months ago you were playing Nick's Fat City, and now you're on the main stage of X-Fest!" shouted a local promoter backstage at the multi-band festival sponsored by Pittsburgh's 105.9 FM. "What happened?"

Throughout Evanescence's meteoric ascent, some have written the band off as "Linkin Park with a chick singer." But Amy Lee is a lot more than Chester Bennington with nicer legs.

The two bands certainly have similar elements, especially on "Bring Me to Life," where electronic underpinnings bolster a rap cameo by 12 Stones' Paul McCoy. But Lee's register and range push the boundaries of Evanescence's music much further. High harmonies aren't grossly out of place, and low-end rhythms sound deeper when they're offset by Lee's vocals wafting a few octaves above.

"Who would have thought they'd work together," Lee said of Evanescence's seemingly conflicting styles. "I'm surprised people didn't figure out that those two things went together before."

Since Fallen's release in early March, when it debuted at #7, it hasn't once left the Billboard albums chart's top 10, an extraordinary three-month streak that in the last year only a few artists — Eminem, 50 Cent and Avril Lavigne among them — can share. A reason for the continued success is Evanescence's elastic allure that stretches from teenagers looking to relate, to nü-metalheads who otherwise are left to a slurry of bands that crunch and whine almost identically, to older fans who deem Lee's voice pleasant enough to balance music that pushes their levels of tolerance.

"They have a decent blend of sounds and do a good job of bringing everything together," said 21-year-old Steve, a dead ringer for Ministry's Al Jourgensen, attending an Evanescence show wearing a Pissing Razors T-shirt and a hat adorned with Tool, Deftones and Slipknot pins. "It's different, it's new, people like it. I'm more of a heavier music fan, but there's a side of me that likes Evanescence."

  "Bring Me To Life"
Fallen
(Wind-Up)
The group's widespread appeal is evident on the airwaves as well. "Bring Me to Life" was first released on modern rock and alternative radio stations as the lead single off the soundtrack to February's "Daredevil" flick. From there it topped the playlists of conventional rock stations and finally pop/top 40 radio, too, where it currently sits at #2, according to trade magazine Radio & Records, sandwiched between Justin Timberlake and R. Kelly.

With stations across the board taking it upon themselves to play new single "Going Under" before the official record-company push, the Evanescence effect shows no signs of letting up.

"I hope that's because we don't just have a couple of good songs or a couple of songs that sound a certain way," Lee said. "Our record is full of [good] songs because we've been working on writing them for eight years now. So there's so much that's been put into it."


NEXT: The 'Christian rock' thing, Amy picks her nose, and this one time ... at band camp ...
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 "Bring Me To Life"
Fallen
(Wind-Up)



 "Bring Me To Life" (live)
Webster Hall, NYC

Fallen
(Wind-Up)



 "Going Under"
Fallen
(Wind-Up)



 "Tourniquet"
Fallen
(Wind-Up)




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