Location: Volkswagen Arena, Istanbul, TR
By: Gamze Öyünc
Evanescence was back in Turkey for the 3rd time after 2007 and 2012 but I have not seen them before in Turkey. I only saw them live in Berlin in 2011 right after they had released their self-titled album. This concert in Istanbul gathered 6200 people to see the show as stated in the press kit sent by the organizators “Pozitif Times” and “Istanbul Blue Night” after the concert. It was especially exciting for me because after over 6 years, in 2017 they released their album Synthesis which blended classical infrastructure and electronic elements and there were two brand new songs on it named “Hi-Lo” and “Imperfection”. I was excited to hear them live for the first time. However, I could only hear the latter song which was the starter of their setlist.
But first off, let me talk about the opening band Veridia. The alternative pop-rock trio Deena Jakoub who is the lead singer and guitarist Brandon Brown and the drummer Kyle Levy are from Nashville, Tennessee. They were formed in 2013 and released their full-length album The Beast You Feed in October 2018. I could only check them out before the show on Youtube of their live performance of their song “I’ll Never Be Ready” with Amy Lee from Evanescence on the keyboards and some back vocals. This song’s chorus is quite catchy and the song is overall sentimental especially if you listen to Jakoub explaining just before the song that it was about her father’s passing away and Lee coming out later to join her on stage only to tell why she decided to play the piano on the record, as well as right there on stage. I’m not going to tell you all the details but if you want to see for yourself, the performance is on Youtube. Lee also joined the band live on stage for this song at the show in İstanbul, and you could tell by the audience’s reaction that she joined Jakoub on the stage. The band Veridia in general is rather poppy in my opinion to join Evanescence on tour but if you look at Evanescence being pretty much mainstream and mega rock stars maybe you would not find it so surprising like I did after all.
Even though maybe Evanescence is not so popular like they were 15 years ago and their records do not sell massively like they used to, but still I can see them attracting thousands of crowds to see them live wherever they go around the world. You can see it on their social media and live videos on Youtube. And that’s success in my opinion! Let’s talk about their live perfomance. The band started with their rendition of a rock version of their electronic/classical song “Imperfection” which was the first single off Synthesis in 2017. The crowd may not have been so familiar with it but it set the right mood for the upcoming songs. As you can imagine the best received songs were the hits from their 2003 debut Fallen, such as “Haunted”, “Going Under” and the no-brainer “Bring Me To Life”. The sing along classics “My Immortal” and “Lithium” were sung by the crowd from the beginning till the end. Throughout the setlist, the band blended their hits pretty well from the first two albums and band’s favorite songs from their self-titled album from 2011. But the highlight of the show for me was the encore medley that consisted of the never released singles but absolute fan favorites from Fallen and The Open Door; “Haunted / My Last Breath / Cloud Nine / Everybody’s Fool / Weight of the World / Snow White Queen.” I mean, come on! If you’ve been a fan from the very beginning, I know you can emphatize with me on my satisfaction.
Evanescence is going to be back in Europe co-headlining the Worlds Collide Tour with Within Tempation in April, 2020.