Evanescence Vocalist Amy Lee on Gender Labels in Music Industry: 'Being Female Isn't a Genre' (Exclusive)

On Friday, Evanescence released The Bitter Pill, the band's first album of all-new music in 10 years, and vocalist Amy Lee recently sat down with PopCulture.com to talk about the album while weighing in on the labels that women in rock and metal end up unfairly tagged with. Lee stated how "being female isn't a genre," but clarified that labels such as "female-fronted rock band" are unnecessarily divisive.

"I have a lot of friends who are women in bands and not one of us really fit in the same genre of rock sub-genre. It's funny because we're just always lumped together like it's all the same because there's a girl singing which is funny and frustrating," Lee told PopCulture. "The funny part of all that is that we all love being lumped in together and don't really care about it because we like being together. We'd rather play with a friend that's in a band than anybody else."

Lee founded the band in the mid-90s and has since gone on to become one of the most well-respected singers in hard rock. Over the years she has had to contend with labels that separate her from her male counterparts, but now, she says that she's put that battle behind her.

"It's hard to feel threatened by that at this point because I just don't feel the same things I've always felt," Lee said. "I just don't really feel like I'm fighting some of those industry-type things so much anymore." Rather than focusing on the disparities, Lee is putting all her energy into the music. "I feel really secure in who I am and what we've been able to put out there, what our band's sound is," she said. "Making this album definitely helped that."

The singer is excited to have moved on from the past issues and "put that into something new," The Bitter Truth, which she feels is "open-minded" and "different" but still "really truly is an Evanescence album." This new era "feels good" to Lee. She doesn't feel she's "wasted" time before., saying that both she and the band have "always been on this journey, but part of that confidence for me is about being unique."

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"I like the way that it sounds to have some fragility and femininity and some of those things that don't just sound like a bad-ass empowered female happening in the vocals when the music can be so heavy and aggressive," she said. "I think that contrast and that push and pull is really what attracts me to music, especially the making of music is drawing beautiful connections between very contrasting things."

Finally, Lee half-joking added, "I like being different and when people don't get it or don't name it right or think it's dumb, I like it. I don't want everybody to like it that much."