Review Summary: Linkin Park Discography Review 1/5
Face it, at some point in his or her life, any human being born this generation was, at some point, a Linkin Park listener. The sing a long friendly mixture of rapping, singing, and screaming, coupled with the angst-filled lyrics made for a teenagers wet dream. Couple this with runaway hits such as In The End, Papercut, Numb and Breaking The Habit, and you have the makings of a successful nu-metal band. However, Linkin Park's success story is utterly unrivaled by any band of the era, and, unlike many of their contempories, their early discography still retains the charm it had upon release, and is still as listenable now as it was back upon release.
Hybrid Theory was the band's debut album, being host to four of the band's most successful songs. Hybrid Theory managed to merge heavy use of rapping with some very ear friendly singing from Chester Bennington, and the occasional screaming, used to maximum effect. This album received a Grammy Nomination for Best Rock Album, and kick started the bands career, and is the highest selling album so far of the 21st Century, having sold nearly 25 million copies world wide.
Crucial to the success of this album is its relatability. The lyrics deal with the band's personal experiences, but they have a universal appeal to them. Songs such as Points Of Authority, Crawling and the radio hit In The End are the best examples of these, particularly the line "You want someone to hurt like you" in the former. The lyrics to these albums are essentially what goes through the head of any teenager, and for that reason it met its success, and remains just as listenable as ever, although with less impact as the years drag on.
Each of the songs contained on this release are very powerful alone, with some incredibly catchy choruses, fantastic rapping from Mike Shinoda and simple but effective instrumentals from the rest of the band. Crawling is a lot softer than much of the album, and manages to retain that catchy, enjoyable nature to it. The rapping found on In The End and Points Of Authority is some of the tightest the band has ever done, and remains as strong now as it was ten years ago.
One Step Closer and A Place For My Head are my two personal favorites on the album. Following the powerful opener Papercut, One Step Closer has some nice guitar work, the usual angry lyrics sung by Chester, and some well done screaming from Chester, with the immortal "shut up" section that will never grow old no matter how many times I listen to it. A Place For My Head reminds me so much of Faint from the album that would follow, being simplistic, with rapping verses and then catchy choruses, before some screaming in the latter half of the song. Whilst this will never be as good as Faint, my personal favorite Linkin Park song, it is nice to draw the comparison. Songs like these show why Hybrid Theory is as listenable now as it ever was.
The universal, child friendly appeal of this album is instantly noticable. This album has a little something for absolutely everybody, and for that, this album manages to be a timeless piece, whilst not perfect, but still thoroughly enjoyable and better than the majority of the music of its time. Whilst this is not their best album, it is a good starting point, and a quite remarkable debut, full of instant hits and catchy songs with some real venom behind them. 3.5/5