REVIEWED BY CHUCK ARNOLD
After the 2003 release of Evanescence's multiplatinum major-label debut, Fallen—which spawned the hits "My Immortal" and "Bring Me to Life"—guitarist-cofounder Ben Moody abruptly quit the Grammy-winning group during the middle of a tour. With this kind of Behind the Music turmoil, it's no wonder there is so much drama sweeping through The Open Door. As lead singer-pianist Amy Lee carries on with Moody replacement Terry Balsamo (formerly of Cold), Evanescence's unique sound—imagine Sarah McLachlan fronting a goth-metal band—is heightened with swelling strings, a cathedral-ready choir and bombastic arrangements that owe as much to Beethoven as Black Sabbath. While Lee gives cuts like "Lithium" a refreshing dose of estrogen, all the headbanging histrionics wear thin.
DOWNLOAD THIS: "Call Me When You're Sober"