This isn't Fallen; there it's been said, it's over with. It's remarkable how the two most frequent comments I hear about The Open Door is that 'it sounds the same as everything else' and 'it's not as good as their other album'. Well that doesn't make any sense, if it sounds the same then it should be just as good; but the fact of the matter is that it does not sound the same. You have Amy Lee's voice, true, but I don't perceive that as a bad thing at all. The haunting gothic sound to Evanescence is enhanced in The Open Door, not only through the lyrics, but through the music and even the album art as well.
This album is beautiful in itself, a complete masterpiece. If you want mainstream rock listen to Fallen by all means; it too was a great album, but the style of The Open Door completely deviates from that and opens into a style all its own. It's easy to fall in love with the tracks on this piece if you can accept them for what they are without attempting to mold them to fit Evanescence's older material.
Interestingly enough, I'm still not a terrible fan of the first single 'Call Me When You're Sober' ... it's got Amy Lee's voice, but not the soul that normally goes into the lyrics. This was mended for me by tracks like Sweet Sacrifice, Lithium, and Lacrymosa; beautifully composed and well thought out. And regardless of anything else that can be said of the album, it definitely has a haunting quality. For me this was punctuated and accentuated by the track entitled 'The Only One'; a masterfully compiled piece that sent chills down my spine. My favorite track, 'All That I'm Living For' is beautiful beyond words and I find that you can only appreciate it by listening to it; attempting to confine it to the written word just doesn't do it justice.
And the whole album is like that in a sense. There is no right or wrong way to listen to music, but I think that objectivity is needed when listening to The Open Door. Fallen received such high acclaim that it's practically impossible to best it, so Evanescence did something incredibly smart - they diversified. Instead of attempting to beat their old work, they blazed a new trail for themselves. Fans can stay behind if they like but I would strongly encourage them to follow; The Open Door is full of promises and if you listen closely, I don't think you'll be disappointed.