Interview: Evanescence

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Set to deliver a transcendent experience, Synthesis Live will see the band collaborate with world class Australian symphony orchestras alongside electronic programming to showcase the spectacular new album Synthesis.  Not simply a ‘greatest hits’ album, Synthesis takes a selection of Evanescence’s three previous studio releases along with two new songs, and reimagines them with brand-new recordings and arrangements. Synthesis is an amalgamation of Amy Lee’s masterful singing and piano playing, supported by her band, a full symphony orchestra performing arrangements by long-time collaborator David Campbell as well as an array of electronic music programming and effects.

We sat down with drummer Will Hunt before the band arrives in Australia, to chat about the new album and the challenges of playing with a live orchestra. 

What themes inspired the new album?

Well for this album I mean this is like a reimagining of a lot of the songs that came from the last the first three records. And there’s there’s two new songs on here there is  “Hi- Lo”  and there is “Imperfections” and they’re really cool you know I think this is a very different thing for us the orchestra you know the orchestral elements and the electronic elements have always been in our music but they’ve never been put on display this way like we’re doing this. So this is a completely new thing.

What was your favourite part of making the record? 

Well making this record was you know again like we didn’t have a blueprint like we kind of had an idea, Amy had a vision. This is what I’m thinking but OK how do we get there. A lot of people a lot of effort to you know to get it to that point to get it to where you know it felt like something that was really cohesive. But you know I think in her mind like the vision was pretty clear about where she wanted to take us and it was just you know rebuilding the songs but kind of focusing more on the melody and the vocal and the lyric. I suppose that’s true. You know the big rock stars and big rock drums. And that’s what’s cool about that is that you know we know we can do that you know we’d love doing that. But like I don’t know any other bands that could take this heart of a left turn and their fans. God bless them you know understand it. Get it. Like it’s you know it’s that’s it’s really cool and really cool about ourselves and the fans you know OK.

How has the show been different to put together with an Orchestra? 

Well we’ve been doing shows for synthesis since the beginning of October and so we’ve been hired with orchestras is pretty much a different orchestra every night since then and I think initially that it was challenging again like I said you know nobody had a roadmap. We didn’t know know there was no right or wrong answer about how to do this. And so you know it’s like you know you have you started out and you go OK this is what we know we have this is what we want to do. All right. But then you know you have to start massaging it and after we’re in a really good place I’m excited to bring the Australia because you know Australian fans are going to get some great shows because you know we worked on the show and we’re we’re really happy with that. So it’s it’s cool. Very cool.

How much more work was it to produce a live show with an orchestra? 

Yeah we have a really talented conductor travels with us and she says she comes in with the orchestra’s earlier in the day and she works with them and they kind of get the music to have to people who are happy place for them where they’re all you know growing on it and working on the same you know working on the same vibe and then we come in and do a sound checks last rehearsal with them and you know it’s like he’s got to give it to him. You know a lot of mostly orchestral players are very schooled very very disciplined and they know what they’re doing. They come in and they’re on point they’re ready and they just kind of gel together you know it’s pretty easy to kind of vibe it out you know from the maybe the first song or soundcheck a little woozy goosey but then right after that it’s pretty easy to walk in and start to feel where everything’s that now we as a band we’re really confident in our performance and what we’re doing. So I think that confidence the rest of the orchestra feels like OK we are on the same wave like you know this isn’t going to be crazy.

So what do you do back stage to warm up for a show?  Any rituals or superstitions? 

I think I think that yeah it’s interesting because it kind of depends on what kind of a show we’re doing now viewing our you know we’re doing the you know typical you know heavier Evanescence show. I think we you know there’s certain energy levels that we kind of go into and we get kind of get pumped up a little bit of a different way. Whereas with this with this show you know we still get pumped up to do. But it’s in a different way you know we kind of vibe it out a little bit more all kind of. I think it’s a little more I guess it’s the difference between maybe I don’t know maybe and this is the best thing I can come up with kind of a difference like this is like a certain feeling that you know when you’re buddies and you’re back to go get in a fight and the energy and the camaraderie that really you know get is good and evil and pumped up you know go into a you know play a football game or whatever but then there’s a different kind of energy which if you’re with that same group of people but you’re about to go on a rollercoaster ride. They’re both on you know they’re both really cool and later rating and exciting and your drilling gets pumping but but are different experiences and I think that you know the synthesis thing is more like maybe like more of a roller coaster ride. So it’s just a little bit different you know mindset that we get into. You know so saying we’re so same 5 people still hanging out with each other. We have a good time together and we love playing music together.

What is the most unusual experience you’ve ever had on stage?

For me personally I think that one time this wasn’t with Evanescence. It was with a guy that I play with over in Italy Vasko Rossi  and I was playing I did the same was doing this gag where at the end of the show I hop up on the back of the monitor which is about five feet high that I leap off of that thing and then come down on the drums for the last hit and my drum tech would move my seat out of the way. And because then that jump and then he starts to put it back in so I can sit down the first song and something happened and he got sidetracked so we pulled the seat out from underneath me and I jumped down and then I went to go sit down and there was no seat. So I just I just fell backwards you know in front of 90000 people stadium and you know in Italy and I was the most bizarre kind of humbling weird moment on for me in recent memory.

Evanescence are touring live Nationally in February tickets available via Ticketek.

EVANESCENCE: SYNTHESIS LIVE 2018
Presented by TEG Live and Sony Music
Tickets from TICKETEK
SAT 10 FEB | BRISBANE CONVENTION & EXHIBITION CENTRE
W/ QUEENSLAND SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
| DATE & VENUE CHANGE
TUES 13 & WED 14 FEB | SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE
W/ SYDNEY SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
| FINAL TICKETS RELEASED
FRI 16 FEB | ROD LAVER ARENA
W/ MELBOURNE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
| SELLING FAST

 

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