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"Tourniquet"
Song by Evanescence
from the album Fallen
Published 2003
Recorded 2003 (Various locations)
Genre Alternative metal
Length 4:38
Label Wind-up
Songwriter(s) Amy Lee, Rocky Gray, David Hodges, Ben Moody

"Tourniquet" is a song by American rock band Evanescence. It is the sixth track on their debut studio album, Fallen (2003). Originally titled "My Tourniquet", the song was written for the Christian death metal band Soul Embraced, which featured former-Evanescence member Rocky Gray and was part of their debut album, For the Incomplete. After Gray joined Evanescence between 2001-2002, Evanescence performed their own adaption of the track. The new version of the song was written by Amy Lee, Ben Moody, David Hodges and Rocky Gray.

The song is set in moderate tempo with 100 beats per minute. According to Lee, the song is "from the perspective of someone who has just committed suicide and it's about the controversy in Christianity that if you commit suicide, will you go to heaven or hell?". The song was heavily praised by Johny Loftus from Allmusic who said that it's "Fallen's emotional center point and defines the band's sound." The song was part of the set-list during their Fallen Tour.

Background and composition[edit]

"Tourniquet" was written by Amy Lee, Ben Moody, David Hodges and Rocky Gray.[1] During an interview with VH1, Amy Lee further explained the meaning of the song,

A lot of our songs are written in a way that you could take them to mean several different things. That one was written by our drummer Rocky [Gray], who was in a Christian death metal band before he joined us. He told me that it is coming from a Christian standpoint, but it's about suicide. It's from the perspective of someone who has just committed suicide and it's about the controversy in Christianity that if you commit suicide, will you go to heaven or hell? If all sins are forgiven after accepting Christ, why would there be an exception?[2]

Two demo versions were recorded during the band's pre-Fallen sessions, and both featured a slightly rearranged sound. Both of the demo versions contain a clip from Baz Luhrmann's film William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet during the bridge, and notably quotes the line, "I long to die!". The Fallen version removed the entire clip, while Lee is heard screaming "I want to die!"

According to sheet music published by Alfred Music Publishing on the website Musicnotes.com, "Tourniquet" is an alternative metal, post-grunge, chamber pop and gothic metal song set in a common time and performed in a moderate tempo of 100 beats per minute. It is written in the key of G major and Lee's vocal range for the song runs from the note D4 to E5.[3]

Critical reception[edit]

In his review of Fallen, Adrien Begrand from the website PopMatters wrote, "Though they claim to be a secular band, Evanescence doesn’t shy away from topics of the spiritual variety, and the best example is 'Tourniquet', a song originally performed by Christian metallers Soul Embraced, which effectively combines a more classic metal sound with lyrics that are surprisingly even-handed." He further added that the band "comes closest on the fine 'Tourniquet'".[4] Johny Loftus from Allmusic praised the song saying, "'Tourniquet' is an anguished, urgent rocker driven by chugging guitars and spiraling synths, with brooding lyrics that reference Evanescence's Christian values: 'Am I too lost to be saved?/Am I too lost?/My God! My tourniquet/Return to me salvation.'" He furter added that "the song is Fallen's emotional center point and defines the band's sound."[5]

Live performances[edit]

Evanescence performed the song Chicago in August, 2003 during their Nintendo Fusion Tour. According to Blair R. Fischer from MTV News, "Her [Lee's] reliable bursts took songs like 'Tourniquet' and 'Everybody's Fool' to a new level."[6] The song was also performed live by the band during their concert in Wantagh, New York in July, 2004. Joe D'Angelo said, "Lee alternated between determinedly pacing the stage and seemingly floating on the wings of her soaring vocals through textural hybrids such as 'Taking Over Me,' 'My Last Breath' and 'Tourniquet.'"[7] The song was also performed live by Indian vocalist Ishita Chakraborty at The Great TTIS Challenge, a seven days longing music and arts festival organised by The Telegraph.[8]

Evanescence also performed the song at the Webster Hall in Manhattan, New York City in September, 2003.[9] During the performance, she wore an Alice in Wonderland dress covered with scrawled words, including the words "Dirty, Useless, Psycho and Slut."[9] She explained that there was a story behind the dress. The last time she had come to New York, she had met a DJ from the radio station K-Rock, who had made what she described as horrible comments about exactly how much pleasure he had derived from the picture of her face on the album cover.[9] She had felt too ashamed to say anything, she went on, so she decided to respond through the dress, which represented something innocent that's been tainted.[9] In addition to the performance, Kelefa Saneh from the magazine The New York Times said, "Still, many lyrics seemed to chronicle spiritual struggles, and in one song, Tourniquet, Ms. Lee asked, Will I be denied Christ?"[9] A live version of the song from Le Zénith, Paris is featured on their first live album, Anywhere but Home.[10][11]

Credits and personnel[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ (Media notes).  Unknown parameter |Type= ignored (|type= suggested) (help); Unknown parameter |Name= ignored (help); Unknown parameter |Publisher= ignored (|publisher= suggested) (help); Unknown parameter |Format= ignored (|format= suggested) (help); Unknown parameter |Artist= ignored (|others= suggested) (help); Unknown parameter |Year= ignored (|year= suggested) (help); Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. ^ Kaufman, Gil (2003-05-09). "Evanescence". Retrieved 2007-03-10.  Text "Fallen To The Top" ignored (help)
  3. ^ "Evanescence - Tourniquet Sheet Music (Digital Download)". Musicnotes.com. Alfred Music Publishing. Retrieved August 1, 2011. 
  4. ^ Begrand, Adrien (23 May 2003). "Evanescence: Fallen". PopMatters. Retrieved August 1, 2011. 
  5. ^ Loftus, Johnny. "Fallen - Evanescence". Allmusic. All Media Guide. Retrieved August 1, 2011. 
  6. ^ R. Fischer, Blair (August 13, 2003). "Evanescence Make Understatement Of The Year At Chicago Year Factory". MTV News. MTV Networks. Retrieved August 1, 2011. 
  7. ^ 'Angelo, Joe (July 23, 2004). "Evanescence Show No Signs Of Slowing Down At New York Show". MTV News. MTV Networks. Retrieved August 1, 2011. 
  8. ^ "We are the world". The Telegraph. Ananda Publishers. December 10, 2006. Retrieved August 1, 2011.  Text "The Telegraph]]" ignored (help)
  9. ^ a b c d e Sanneh, Kelefa (September 18, 2003). "Intense Singing, Intense Fashion". The New York Times. Retrieved August 1, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Anywhere But Home (Live): Evanescence". Amazon.de (in German). Retrieved August 1, 2011. 
  11. ^ Deming, Mark. "Evanescence: Anywhere but Home". The New York Times. Retrieved August 1, 2011. 

External links[edit]

Category:Evanescence songs Category:2000 songs Category:Songs about suicide Category:Songs written by David Hodges Category:Songs written by Ben Moody Category:Songs written by Amy Lee

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