As expected, Amy Lee’s latest album Aftermath takes on a very different musical approach than her previous musical successes. This album functions less as a collection of songs designed for radio-play, and more as a musical score – a soundtrack for a film entitled War Story. This album is undoubtedly very different than Lee’s previous music, but it is great nevertheless, with these three different tracks below, from the album proving exactly that.
“Push The Button” is the album’s opening song. When you first listen to it, you immediately become aware of the electronic vibe, which Lee’s experimental vocals overlay. If you are a fan of Amy Lee or her band Evanescence, you will know that Lee’s music does not typically feature this kind of electronic, techno-like atmosphere. Lee has stated that this album experiments with the same emotions she dealt with in Evanescence’s previous releases, just in a different musical way, and this could not be more evident than in this song.
Despite this song’s club-like tone, it still has that signature haunting melody and vocal style associated with Amy Lee. Indeed, this track is similar and dissimilar to Lee’s previously released music in many ways. This is one of the few tracks which actually feature Lee’s vocals, and the results are truly amazing. This song makes for a very strong opening number; you can listen to it below.
“Dark Water” is one of the more instrumental songs on the album, featuring Arabic style vocals from “world singer” Malika Zarra. Lee stated in an interview with Rolling Stone that Malika Zarra sung for about twenty minutes out of which Lee got some great material for “Dark Water”. Well, “great material” is a slight understatement. Malika Zarra’s vocals are stunning, and give this track a raw sort of feel to it. Lee’s musical experimentation is nothing less than inspired, and I would argue that the more instrumental tracks to this album give it a very real, melancholic atmosphere.
Again, this entire album could be argued to be similar in its raw, melancholic tone to Evanescence’s previous music, but very different in its artistic approach. ‘Evanescence’ seems to be a kind of branded music, it must always have a very dark tone to it, a very ethereal quality, and must always be rock music, whereas with her independent music, Lee seems to really be expanding her musical style, moving away from the angst-ridden emo rock of her previous years to create a fuller, much more mature sound. Of course, the danger with releasing a mostly instrumental album is that people tend to get bored without the vocals to listen to, but this album will keep you enthralled throughout its duration. I would strongly recommend you listen to “Dark Water” below.
The third and final track I would like to share with you is entitled “Lockdown”. I would argue that Lee’s musical experimentation falls down here slightly because when you listen to this track, it is very strongly reminiscent of Evanescence’s most recent album of 2011, and seems to revert back to Lee’s older ‘Evanescence’ branded music, rather than taking steps towards a more mature musical style. In fact, it is so similar to the music on Evanescence’s previous album, it may as well have just been on there.
Nevertheless, the track is still a great addition to Lee’s latest album, and seems to serve as a track to please Evanescence fans. After the first verse, we start to move towards a slightly more ethereal sound, only to come back to the ‘Evanescence’ vibe shortly after. However, after the next verse, we finally reach what feels like a very overdue chorus, and it is nothing short than absolutely beautiful. It serves as a glorious break away from the slight repetitive quality of the verses. This track is arguably the least exciting in terms of musical experimentation and maturity, but is perhaps the catchiest song on the album. You can listen to this amazing track below.
Overall then, I would strongly recommend this album because of its sheer level of brilliance. The album will doubtlessly function as a fantastic soundtrack to the film War Story, which I confess I have yet to see. Lee’s musical style seems to have vastly expanded, and the move away from her signature emo-rock style is incredibly refreshing. You can purchase Amy Lee’s Aftermath album on iTunes here.
Words by Jay Sullivan // Edited by Ayo Adepoju