Wednesday, 20 January 2010

10: Evanescence - Bring Me To Life

Yes, yes, I know. Should've been finished with this list before the end of 2009. I can only apologise for my extreme tardiness. Now, on with the Top 10.

At number 10 in my countdown (and I'm prepared for a lot of mocking criticism of this selection), one of the more surprising hits of the past decade. In June and July 2003, sandwiched between number ones from R Kelly ('Ignition') and Beyonce ('Crazy In Love'), a little-known metal group from Arkansas had one of the biggest hits of that summer, a song which topped the charts for four consecutive weeks.

Admittedly, 'Bring Me To Life' benefitted hugely from its use in that summer's blockbuster movie hit, 'Daredevil'. But that can only partly explain its success. After all, it went Top 10 in virtually every country on the planet, and won a Grammy for Best Hard Rock Performance.

Ultimately, I put the success down to a flawless, powerful, near-operatic vocal from frontwoman Amy Lee, Little Rock's second most famous daughter (Chelsea Clinton was born in the same town, ten months before Lee). Lee sings the verses herself, then allows guest vocalist Paul McCoy to sing the chorus, with Lee contributing the backing vocals.

The lyrics tell of redemption from unhappiness, not, as was originally assumed, of Jesus. The song was originally propelled into the spotlight by Christian rock stations, but Evanescence had a huge falling out with the Christian rock community, with Lee saying in a 2006 interview "Can we please skip the Christian thing? I'm so over it. It's the lamest thing. I fought that from the beginning; I never wanted to be associated with it."

So not Christian rock then. But nevertheless, a fine piece of work from a woman with a remarkable voice.


  1. You thought me putting "3" on my list was bad?!

  2. C'mon... Finish the Fight. This is a great list, I refuse to be left in top-ten limbo. - Signed, a fan.

  3. Cheers for the support Andy, I will be completing the list this week (I hope).