After selling nearly 14 million copies worldwide of its 2003 debut, “Fallen,” and winning two Grammy Awards, Evanescence knows there are great expectations for its new album, “The Open Door,” which comes out on Oct. 3. But frontwoman Amy Lee insists she’s not paying much heed to external pressure.
“I just haven’t ever looked at it that way,” Lee tells Billboard.com. “‘Fallen’ is a great record [but] I don’t think you can match the success of another body of work. I think that’s only going to frustrate you. My only goal making this one was making something that I love even more and that I think is an even better record, and we’ve definitely done that.”
Evanescence recorded “The Open Door” beginning late last year in Los Angeles. Producer Dave Fortman returned for the sophomore set, which also incorporates a string section and a choir. “Call Me When You’re Sober,” inspired by the end of Lee’s relationship with Seether frontman Shaun Morgan, is the first single, while the song “Lacrymosa” is based on the section of the same name from Mozart’s “Requiem.”
“I think you can hear the growth,” says Lee, who acknowledges that her lyrics are mostly about “what was going on at the time” in her life. “All the experimenting and fun stuff that we tried comes across, I think.”
It wasn’t an easy process, however. Guitarist Terry Balsamo suffered a stroke last October, and even though Lee says he returned to the studio immediately after his release from the hospital, he’s been convalescing and doing physical therapy ever since.
“It’s been a ton of hard work for him,” she says. “We’re at rehearsals now and he’s playing and it’s so great to have him back. But it’s a step-by-step process for him.”
Evanescence begins a 17-date small-venue tour to promote “The Open Door” on Oct. 5 in Toronto. A more extensive outing is expected to follow.