Evanescence took a risk with their 2017 album Synthesis by reconstructing its material into elegant orchestrations that enhanced aspects of its music that are often ignored. Then it upped the stakes by bringing the production on the road with a rotating cast of symphony members at each stop. The band delivered a riveting performance during Friday Night’s (Aug. 10) date at PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, N.J., where the backing ensemble impressively brought to life the classical elements that infuse Evanescence’s music. Following the captivating set was a smart pairing with electric violinist Lindsey Stirling, a co-headliner who energetically balanced the evening.
The two acts utilized the symphony in contrasting ways. Evanescence could have been tempted to pump up the bombast at every turn since its catalog possesses a fair share of melodrama. But the full force of the orchestra was only unleashed when building up to the zenith of highlights including “Bring Me to Life” and “My Heart Is Broken,” increasing its impact.
The same could be said for singer Amy Lee, who alternated between sitting behind a piano and swaying before a mic stand as she delved into every nuance of her vocals. It would have been appropriate to go total diva, but her emotional connection to the material propelled her voice rather than all the wind in her lungs. It especially paid off when she serenaded the crowd with the practically a cappella “My Immortal.” Singing to a galaxy of cell phone lights, Lee won a much deserved standing ovation for her stirring rendition of the ballad.