The debut album by Anatomy of a Ghost is utterly unoriginal, by the book emo with little to recommend it for any but the style's most die-hard followers. The songs all tend to follow the same soft-LOUD-soft-LOUD pattern that started getting a little tired after Nirvana's second album, with occasional shifts into unusual beats or time signatures for no particular reason (the herky-jerky "Set the Stage" really can't seem to make up its mind between two perfectly good rhythms), and the lyrics are about as embarrassing as song titles like "Streetlights, Empty Wells" and "Beauty Is in Its Embrace" would lead one to expect. On the positive side, singer John Hurley has a pleasant voice that in its quieter moments resembles that of the Shins' James Mercer, and the young band handles the showoff-y dynamic shifts with relative ease. Still, while listening to Evanesce, even casual emo fans might find that they've heard all of this before -- and better.
AllMusic Review by Stewart Mason