Linkin Park
Minutes To Midnight


3.0
good

Review

by Patrick Armstrong USER (4 Reviews)
July 4th, 2012 | 218 replies | 14,271 views


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: While it may not be as stylistically masterful as its two predecessors, Minutes To Midnight is a solid album that brings new, fresh ideas into Linkin Park's palette - even if there are a few subpar tracks.

4 of 5 thought this review was well written

The statement seems to ring true time and time again: once you're famous, there's no way to make everyone happy. When a blown-up band releases a new album, one of two things always seems to happen: If the album retains the same stylistic features as the previous album, it gets criticized for being bland and unoriginal, or, if the album makes a departure from those stylistic features, it gets criticized for, well, being different. Linkin Park chose the latter path with Minutes To Midnight, a direct departure from the Rap-Rock sound they had become famous for, this time experimenting with different styles in the effort to find a fresh and equally appealing new sound.

But did it work? Did Linkin Park really make an album that lived up to the expectations set by Hybrid Theory and Meteora? Was the album the breath of fresh air that Linkin Park so desperately needed to stay alive – the groundbreaking reinvention that it potentially could have been? Or did the band crash and burn in their search for a new sound that just didn’t suit their strengths?

The answer is – and no pun intended – somewhere in between.

Minutes To Midnight is a collection of songs that vary greatly in style. The nu-metal guitar riffs, the angst-inspired lyrics of the previous two albums have been all but abolished; yes, the album has a far greater emphasis on softer, more subtly composed material. Linkin Park pull off these kinds of songs surprisingly well, as evidenced by the beautiful “Shadow Of The Day”, the introspective “Valentine’s Day”, and the thought provoking closer “The Little Things Give You Away”. Chester sings alone in these songs; in fact, all of the best tracks on the album feature only Chester. “Leave Out All The Rest” and “What I’ve Done” are two mid-tempo numbers that may not be all that memorable, but are still pleasant to the ear. “In Pieces”, perhaps the strongest track on the album, possesses a quiet intensity that grips you from the very beginning, and Chester’s superb vocal performance carries the track to success.

Despite the evident focus on the softer material, Minutes To Midnight does also have a few heavy moments, namely, “Given Up” and “No More Sorrow”. Both of these tracks sound slightly punk-influenced and are perfectly enjoyable, but just lack the groove that made tracks like “Points Of Authority” and “Figure.09” from their previous albums catchy and memorable. Plus, in the grand scheme of the album, these kinds of tracks just seem out of place and awkward. To put it simply, they are both good tracks, but would have worked better in another context (though that 17-second scream in “Given Up” still makes my jaw drop.)

And with all of these tracks that focus on Chester’s ever-so-evident singing abilities, one may start asking, where does Mike Shinoda fit in with all of this? It seems, unfortunately, as though all of the failed experiments of Minutes To Midnight’s recording sessions were laid on Mike’s shoulders, and it’s in these tracks that the album’s weaknesses begin to truly show. He raps in “Bleed It Out”, which is a mediocre track with poor lyrics. While the chorus may be catchy, it grows tiring very quickly and you’ll find yourself skipping the track more often than not. “Hands Held High”, on the other hand, actually has some of the best rap verses that Shinoda has ever done, but the track overall has boring and generic musical content that results in its overall mediocrity. “In Between” is a somewhat industrial-sounding track that, for the first time, features Mike singing. And yes, while his voice is quite nice, the song lacks presence, and while it may be one of the most unique tracks on the album, it also somehow manages to come off as dull and uninspired. Overall, the unequal treatment of Linkin Park’s two big personalities brings the album down; it feels lopsided and the tracks don’t work with each other to make a good impression on listeners.

All of these factors added together result in an album that is far from perfect, but nevertheless enjoyable. The good outweighs the bad, even if just barely. While Minutes To Midnight fails to live up to its two predecessors, it’s still worth a listen if you want to hear something different out of Linkin Park; no song on this album fails to bring something new to the table, and this is ultimately where the strength of the album lies. If you’re really interested in it, don’t hesitate to buy it, but if you’re still skeptical, don’t make it a priority.

Recommended Tracks:
-Wake (while I forgot to mention this track in the review, it is a pretty awesome intro, and definitely worth checking out.)
-Shadow Of The Day
-What I've Done
-In Pieces
-The Little Things Give You Away


user ratings (2748)
Chart.
2.5
average
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • Nick Mongiardo CONTRIBUTOR (2.5)
    For the most part LP abandoned their nu-metal sound, but it could have been executed bette...

    Pistol Pete (3)
    LP at their most experimental, but also most foolish....

    Kartikeya (3)
    Unique in its own way...

    Liam Whear (2.5)
    The sad fact is either way the band was fucked...

  • Freddy Thomas (3.5)
    An album that has some promise is not generally fulfilled by the new sound, new style & ov...

    Kyle Hallman (3)
    After a 5 year wait for LP's next studio album. We see the band taking a toally different...

    scarsremain (5)
    LP new CD was much anticipated. BUt is the change for the better of the band...

    altairschaos56 (5)
    Four years after Meteora, Linkin Park is back. And they have brought a new sound. Minutes ...

  • Derek Marchewka (3.5)
    Linkin Park's new album: Good, Bad, one things for sure, there arn't the same Linkin Park ...

    DerMond (3)
    Points for effort, but too little, too late....

    Gravy (2)
    Nice points, but generally incredibly disappointing, mainly because of the hype it recieve...

    grungekicksmetalsass (2)
    ...

  • Porter W. Richards (3)
    They may have matured, but they've ended up singling out former fans and turning potential...

    Abaddon2005 (2)
    Old school punk and hip-hop might have looked cool on the blueprints, but as it turns out ...


Comments:Add a Comment 
OceanMechanic
July 4th 2012



72 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Hey guys, this is my first review, so any constructive criticisms you have to make would be very much appreciated

Digging: Queens of the Stone Age - ...Like Clockwork

macadoolahicky
July 4th 2012



1835 Comments


Looks like a good review for a first, and it's also much shorter than the last review for it. Disagree with your opinion though.

SatelliteYears
July 4th 2012



188 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Good review, I agree with most things here.

johnnydeking29
July 5th 2012



8664 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Ugh another review for this shitty album, not badly written though and not 4000 words long either

Digging: Naked City - Naked City

rockandmetaljunkie
July 5th 2012



3302 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Congrats for writing your first review man !!

This album is where LP lost it.

Da11thMytrillSphere
July 5th 2012



546 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

They lost it with the mash up with Jay-Z

IndianaWarLord
July 5th 2012



310 Comments


agreed. reanimation and the "mash up," if thats what you wanna call it, began their fall. they got too self-righteous on their own sound and importance.

OceanMechanic
July 5th 2012



72 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I don't think LP ever really "lost it" for good. They've just made some fumbles along the way, such as, yes, Reanimation and Collision Course, as well as a few songs on this album.

I personally think A Thousand Suns was great, and Living Things isn't all that bad either.

mindleviticus
July 5th 2012



7940 Comments


One good song.... That's it

macadoolahicky
July 5th 2012



1835 Comments


The only song I dig off of this is "In Pieces"

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
July 5th 2012



48551 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

No more linkin park reviews please dear god

Digging: The Hotelier - Home, Like NoPlace Is There

Da11thMytrillSphere
July 5th 2012



546 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Men, that's impossible.

Ikarus14
July 7th 2012



519 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Album pretty much falls apart after the first half.

random
July 11th 2012



2243 Comments


This sucks.

johnnydeking29
July 11th 2012



8664 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

balls

qdgyu
August 27th 2012



34 Comments


I actually think "In Between" and "Hands Held High" are the best songs on here. huh, to each his own I suppose. Good review, sir.

OceanMechanic
October 17th 2012



72 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I love Shinoda's rap verses in Hands Held High for sure, but the music lacks the poignancy to complement the lyrics effectively.

oltnabrick
February 2nd 2013



29282 Comments


this album is a frothy turd.


no sweet jams here.

Digging: Gucci Mane and Young Thug - Young Thugga Mane La Flare

Drummerboy123
February 3rd 2013



2168 Comments


LP's worst album to date. So boring and generic.

Leave Out All the Rest and The Little Things Give You Away are the only good things on here.

VermicideReloadead
February 3rd 2013



1434 Comments


Leave Out All the Rest is awful and bleed it out is a incomplete track, when they play that track they need to add a lot of outros.

I prefer given up ( despite of the childish lyric), no more sorrow and what I've done





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