How cool would it be if you could go back in time to tell your past self things, think of the heartbreaks you could avoid, of the disasters you could prevent, of the albums you could stop yourself buying, or in some cases, recommend. Do you want to know what springs to mind with this deep philosophy?
But honestly,if this could happen, Iíd have told myself to get this before I got Meteora. Yes, thatís right, I was a silly little Nu-Metaller a few years ago. Iíll be honest, this is one of the only albums from that period of my life that I pull out from under my bed, dust down, and stick into my cd player, hi-fi or on a few occasions, my Mp3 player. Why do that when you could pull out youíre Fall of Troy or your Muse that you seem to adore now, thatís a question that my friends have asked me on a number of occasions. All you need to do to discover why is to listen, like a parent. Listen with a non-judgemental ear while finding any little problems that may lie within.
You see, this album, comes to me with a tag. In a few words, music for teenagers, not instrumentally amazing, not something that will be noted as ďclassic" 10 years down the line, but a good album none the less. Why, the album fuses Chester Benningtonís vocals with Mike Shinodaís rapping, coming up with something that, at the time, would be considered fresh and new. What do record companies do with fresh and new? Pay x amount of money to make that talent theirís. Chester has a very diverse vocal range, going from amazing singing voice to, an average scream sortÖthing. His ability to switch between vocal styles is particularly evident in Runaway
where he sings through the chorus and screams the verses. Mikeís rapping on the other hand, comes off so smoothly, itís soothing in a rather strange way, especially on In The End
. Mikes vocals on that track have an echo effect put on them, which makes them somewhat mellow.
It has to be said however, that Linkin Park are rather weak instrumentally. Bass player Phoenix is one of the most boring and basically, bad, bass players around at the moment
(Memo to Phoenix, there are 4 more strings on your bass, use Ďem). The guitar player plays some rather good riffs, but nothing out of this world or difficult. An example of a good Linkin Park riff can be found on A Place For My Head
. the intro riff isnít anything technically amazing, but itís catchy, which is what Linkin Park are. The drummer doesnít do much, just keeps the rhythm well, so, nothing really remarkable about that. Linkin Parkís 2 better instrumentalists are Joseph Hahn (Dj) and Mike Shinoda (keyboard) these two, together, make one heck of a team, Mike is a more than competent keyboard player and without Joseph, Linkin Park wouldnít be Linkin Park, theyíre instrumental qualities are best show in instrumental track A Cure For The Itch
which is just Mike on Keyboard and Joseph on the decks. Not the most amazing of listens, but it shows Mike and Joes skills rather well
So, looking back over all of this what would I say? Well, if you want great guitar solos and all round great instrumental skills, look elsewhere. If on the other hand, you want to hear some music from one of the late 20th/ early 21st centuryís more fresh bands, give this a listen. Donít judge it straight away, like a child, give it time to show you itís true colour, then make youíre mind up on it. Overall though, Iíd give this a 4/5 because itís not a classic by any means, but it does put in a rather good turn on youíre cd player AND, it's a springboard to get you into heavier music than pop
Recommended for fans of: Korn, Limp Bizkit, early system of a down