Linkin Park
One More Light


1.7
very poor

Review

by Green Baron USER (159 Reviews)
May 20th, 2017 | 156 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Turn the lights out.

It’s impossible to talk about One More Light without bringing up The Hunting Party, seeing as that album inadvertently led to the existence of this one. The Hunting Party felt like a record Linkin Park wanted to make, one that had passion and energy behind its creation, one that offered a rejuvenation of a harder rock sound. It also felt like a statement of sorts: the lead single ran for six minutes and was bolstered with metal riffs, Mike Shinoda started picking fights with groups like CHVRCHES for contributing to the softening of alternative radio, and clips of braggadocio (“Put the heavy shit there!”) were interspersed amongst songs. Yet it was all for naught, as The Hunting Party became Linkin Park’s worst-selling album, hardly a surprise for a record that tried its damned hardest to deviate from standard pop tropes.

So here we are, three years later, as Linkin Park try their damned hardest to emulate standard pop tropes. That on its own is not what plagues One More Light, though it contributes significantly to the album’s downfall. The idea of Linkin Park going electropop may be sacrilege to many, and although the band certainly has their fair share of soft songs in their catalog, few of them could be categorized as straight-out “pop”. One More Light comes across as a hail mary pass by a band now in their 40s trying desperately to connect with this generation’s adolescent demographic, pandering to the desires of today’s pop listeners in an attempt to remain relevant amongst the youth. It’s easy to forget that teenagers who listened to Hybrid Theory when it came out are now in their 30s, and One More Light is not designed for them. One can argue that this is all a product of label interference, commanding the band to construct a pop record in order to rack up huge sales, but either way, the deliberate attempt to move in a mainstream direction comes across as two-faced by a band that wrote an entire album devoted to "heaviness for heaviness’ sake" and criticizing the poppy state of rock radio.

As a pop album, One More Light is standard for the course. What’s presented is the blandest variety of the genre, one that takes zero risks and succumbs to the most prevalent clichés. On display are processed electronic drum beats, unappealing spliced-up vocals and guitars so low in the mix they’re mostly inaudible amongst the layers of clean, slick overproduction. The songwriting is poor as well, which has nothing to do with genre and more to do with laziness. Such mistakes include choruses that repeat one word over and over again (“Invisible”), nonsensical lyrical choices (“if I’m wrong, then I’m halfway right”), incessant na-na-na-na-nas (the aforementioned “Halfway Right”) and ill-advised guest features (“Heavy”). Make no mistake - had these same issues occur on a ‘rock’ album, they would still be criticized.

The main focus of pop music is the hook, and One More Light does not excel in this area. Bennington’s vocals leave a lot to be desired, offering a noticeably weaker output than his fiery, amped-up performance on The Hunting Party. The melodies themselves are not at all conducive to memorability; nevertheless, his lifeless voice sinks songs like “Battle Symphony”, where the hook just sounds awkward, and “Halfway Right”, in which the melody does him no favors. The best moments happen to be the most emotional ones: Mike’s verses on “Invisible” and Chester’s on the title track are the two that stand out the most. Opening track “Nobody Can Save Me” rises above the rest of the electronic pop dirge, with effective use of synthesizer, handclaps and dubstep to complement an admittedly well-done performance by Bennington.

Linkin Park’s true intentions will never be revealed. Mike Shinoda may have been on record saying “We didn't really care about genre… We just focused on the words and melodies that felt most special to us… I think you can hear that we weren't aiming for it to fit into a box,” but label manipulation will always remain a theory. One More Light is an album too safe and vanilla to be considered offensive, yet simultaneously too limp and effortless to be forgivable. Artistic maturation would indicate growth from adolescent angst, but being a group of trendhopping 40-year olds is not the answer either.



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user ratings (929)
1.8
poor
other reviews of this album
1 of

Comments:Add a Comment 
Green Baron
May 20th 2017


24751 Comments

Album Rating: 1.7

Why is everything so ____________?

Gyromania
May 20th 2017


28945 Comments


We needed this review

Green Baron
May 20th 2017


24751 Comments

Album Rating: 1.7

obviously, due to my historic username I must cover it

Green Baron
May 20th 2017


24751 Comments

Album Rating: 1.7

and also it's not 500 paragraphs long

Gyromania
May 20th 2017


28945 Comments


Ooh nice burn

butcherboy
May 20th 2017


9464 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

looks like linkin park finally achieved something.. an album so bad, it brings people together..

SteakByrnes
May 21st 2017


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

Nice review my boy, pos

Digging: PVRIS - Hallucinations

TVC15
May 21st 2017


10253 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Long time no see Baron



"and also it's not 500 paragraphs long" are you tryna throw shade at my review

SteakByrnes
May 21st 2017


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

He threw you under a whole line of buses

Green Baron
May 21st 2017


24751 Comments

Album Rating: 1.7

that was a deliberate comment



much love LPFTW

SowingSeason
Moderator
May 21st 2017


32733 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Review is really good



But this album isn't that bad at all

Digging: Low Roar - ross.

Lord(e)Po)))ts
May 21st 2017


47277 Comments


lmao you fucking would goddammit

Digging: Lapalux - Amnioverse

Lord(e)Po)))ts
May 21st 2017


47277 Comments


i heard the kiiara and pusha t songs and they were the worst thing ive heard all year

and i like kiiara tbh

SteakByrnes
May 21st 2017


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

Yea this is the worst thing I've heard all year easily

FullOfSounds
May 21st 2017


15772 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Suicide Silence, Front Porch Step, and Train made worse album imo

SteakByrnes
May 21st 2017


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

Suicide Silence is very close to this, but this is just abysmal

TVC15
May 21st 2017


10253 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

At least Suicide Silence had more balls than this

onionbubs
May 21st 2017


12105 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

at least train is almost entertainingly bad in places

Digging: Counterparts - Nothing Left to Love

Green Baron
May 21st 2017


24751 Comments

Album Rating: 1.7

did people actually listen to the new Train album

SteakByrnes
May 21st 2017


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

Drops of Jupiter in her hair yadda yadda



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