Evanescence - The Bitter Truth review


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Band: Evanescence
Album: The Bitter Truth
Release date: March 2021

01. Artifact/The Turn
02. Broken Pieces Shine
03. The Game Is Over
04. Yeah Right
05. Feeding The Dark
06. Wasted On You
07. Better Without You
08. Use My Voice
09. Take Cover
10. Far From Heaven
11. Part Of Me
12. Blind Belief
13. Cruel Summer [Bananarama cover] [live from Home] [Target Exclusive and Japanese Edition bonus]
14. The Chain [Fleetwood Mac cover] [Target Exclusive and Japanese Edition bonus]

Why does the cover art give me Marshmello vibes?

Evanescence are not a band who can be accused of rushing into things, with their latest work The Bitter Truth coming ten years after their last fully original release, 2011's self-titled effort. Not only do the times change, but so has the band's focus; combining the more introspective elements of the band's prior work with a greater focus on world events makes The Bitter Truth perhaps the band's most adventurous effort, while still being steeped in the familiar sounds of their past works. The band have ensured the wait is more than worth it for fans of the band.

Tracks like "Feeding The Dark" show that Evanescence can still write melancholic but anthemic tracks in the vein of their sword of Damocles "Bring Me To Life" without sounding contrite or insincere, nearly two decades removed. "Use My Voice" on the other hand sees the tonal shift change thematically, with the band focusing on the world without rather than the world within, successfully navigating the tightrope between sounding corny and jilted social commentary. Perhaps the best example of the latter is the album closer "Blind Belief", which utilities shifting dynamics to create a mini-epic within a four-minute running length.

Amy Lee's voice perhaps sounds the best it ever has, with the soaring "The Game Is Over" able to combine her powerful voice with a mastery and control that can rival the likes of Within Temptation's Sharon Del Adel for the title of the best female vocalist in metal. Lee is ably accompanied by the rest of the band, which can count among its members the likes of Will Hunt of drums, as they create a powerful backing on songs like "The Game Is Over" to allow Lee to shine.

The production of The Bitter Truth is perhaps the secret weapon for the band, ably blending a diverse use of sounds and effects while reflecting the undercurrent of darkness that permeates the album. Harnessing all these different elements and aiming them at the same target sees The Bitter Truth being a strong and cohesive collection of tracks that mix well together, allowing slower tracks like "Far From Heaven" to sit naturally behind upbeat songs such as "Take Cover" without the album sounding jarring.

The album does have its moments where differing parts don't quite connect as well as they were designed, with the sarcasm-drenched lyrics of "Yeah Right" a bit ill-fitting when paired with the musical track behind it; while the song is still strong, it doesn't reach the heights it has the potential too. "Take Cover" is perhaps the lowest ebb for the album; sounding like it was built to be radio-ready, it dilutes the band's sound for what would be radio appeal to the detriment of the song. It isn't terrible, but it is the one track where my finger hovers over the skip button.

It must also be said that this is an album that is unlikely to win over many who are not fans of the band or have travelled further down the path into metal, rendering gateway acts like Evanescence to be short changed as a pop act. While this doesn't reflect on the album itself to a large extent, tracks like "Take Cover" don't help its cause.

It is a shame that a band as non-prolific as Evanescence should release an album as good as The Bitter Truth right now, with much of its tracklist destined to be concert staples for years to come where they can breathe in a way that studio records are unable to capture; it means yet more waiting for fans who already rival Guns N' Roses fanbase as the most patient lot in heavy music.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 8
Songwriting: 7
Originality: 6
Production: 8


Written on 03.04.2021 by Just because I don't care doesn't mean I'm not listening.

Guest review by
Rafael Cevidanes
Unlike many who became an Evanescence fan, I didn't get into the metal realm through them.

published 18.04.2021 | Comments (2)


Comments: 10   Visited by: 214 users
03.04.2021 - 23:47
SoUnDs LiKe PoP

This band has never really put out anything interesting, and this album hasn't changed that. I'm sure there are plenty of 30 year-olds who are excited to revisit their high school days through this, though.

Side note - I love how the album is called "The Bitter Truth," but then all of the politically-inclined songs just regurgitate already common and safe social talking points.
I lift weights and listen to metal
04.04.2021 - 02:37
Green Devil
I usually agree with the reviewer but not this time. I really loved the debut album and still do but Evanescence have gone stale a long time ago. I can agree that Amy Lee has one of the best female voices in rock/metal but that doesn't help much when the songs are extremely generic and they all sound the same. I've listened to the album about ten times since its release and I actually put it on before writing this comment just to be sure, but sadly there isn't one memorable song on this album. This is background music, nothing more. Also the cover is horrible. So if we need to wait another ten years for the next output I'd rather see them calling it quits.
"When you are dead, you do not know you are dead. It's only painful for others. The same applies when you are stupid." - Ricky Gervais
04.04.2021 - 09:11
Gikhar Wizard

That artwork is pretty pretty pretty pretty pretty pretty ugly
In My Opinion
04.04.2021 - 15:43

Nothing to see here. One more unispired release form this band. Nothing new, nothing exciting.
05.04.2021 - 20:46
Night Theater

Very disappointing album. It's missing the vibe, intensity, crunchiness, and the symphonics, of the first two albums which made them great. And the artwork is a joke.
06.04.2021 - 03:52
Rafael Cevidanes

Not a good end-of-career album. Amy Lee is just making money from the band's acclaimed name, living off the past glorious days, and she released this because the fans were getting on her nerves for new material. A terrible record to bury a 2-Grammy awarded band that hasn't actually been a band for almost 2 decades. But something like this would better end to liberate anyone from false expectations, a lesson Synthesis taught many fans. I reviewed this album, but given the fact a member of the staff was capable of rating this as a "very good" record, I'm just guessing it will never see the light of day here. It's a pity, because I approached all the main ups and downs of the band's career and tried to neatly point out the possible reasons for a material such as this one.
07.04.2021 - 00:50

Honestly, I think Taylor Swift's last couple albums are edgier, more memorable, and take more risks than this album.
Nie mój cyrk, nie moje małpy
07.04.2021 - 17:34
Boxcar Willy
yr a kook
You're a better man than I for sitting through this in its entirety.
14:22 - Marcel Hubregtse
I do your mum
07.04.2021 - 17:49
Written by Tuonelan on 07.04.2021 at 00:50

Honestly, I think Taylor Swift's last couple albums are edgier, more memorable, and take more risks than this album.

You could say that about many albums.
Serenity is no longer wishing you had a different past.

2021 goodies
07.04.2021 - 20:30

Written by RaduP on 07.04.2021 at 17:49

Written by Tuonelan on 07.04.2021 at 00:50

Honestly, I think Taylor Swift's last couple albums are edgier, more memorable, and take more risks than this album.

You could say that about many albums.

Yes, but would the other comparisons sting as much?
Nie mój cyrk, nie moje małpy

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