Singer/Pianist Amy Lee and former lead guitarist Ben Moody began writing songs together as kids in their native Arkansas and built a following with their debut album Origin and several EPs. These releases lead to a deal with Wind-Up Records and their first major label album Fallen, which went on to sell over 14 million copies after its release in 2003. Their goth-inspired sound was originally marketed as Christian Rock, but Lee and Moody made it clear after this confusion that while, personally, they may be Christian, their music spans beyond their spirituality and that they write about all aspects of their lives. While touring to support Fallen, Moody left the band due to "creative differences," and was replaced by Terry Balsamo. In 2004, Evanescence released a CD/DVD compilation called Anywhere But Home in 2004 that had several one off singles such as "Breathe No More" (from the Elektra movie soundtrack) and the DVD was of their live show from Paris. Their follow-up to Fallen will be The Open Door and is due to be released in October 2006, but will be touring without Will Boyd who left the band in July 2006 to spend more time with his family.
The dark, eerie mood of Evanescence music is accented by the siren voice of Amy Lee, whose addictive sound draws pieces from alterna-girls like Tori Amos, Dolores O'Riordan from The Cranberries and Shirley Manson. Lee/Moddy penned songs may draw heritage from a goth-style, but their music rises to a more enchanting level, addressing painful, sometimes disturbing topics, such as the song "Hello" where Amy laments about the death of her sister. Adding to Lee's voice are a mixture of heavy guitars from Moody, creating a nu-metal background that would seem to contrast the lyrics, but makes for an excellent, if unexpected pairing. With Moody now gone from the group, our curiosity is piqued as to how their sophomore album will fare when it hits shelves in October.