With ‘One More Light’ dropping on May 19th, Linkin Park fans have been up in the air about how they feel about the group’s next step. With only the first single, Heavy, being available at the moment, the LP faithful have come to question if this album is not the beginning of the end for what is currently the best selling American Rock Group of the 21st Century (CD sales).
For those who haven’t heard the song a link will be at the end of the post.
So what’s really the problem here?
To put it simply, it’s soft and Mike doesn’t rap, and I’m like ‘is that it?’. Ok it’s not classic Linkin Park but it’s still good and it’s the only song on the album we have been able to hear. This all links back to something Jimi Hendrix was told back when he swapped Noel and Mitch out for Buddy Miles and Billy Cox towards the end of the experience. He had hung himself on this hook and now that he wanted to get off (change his musical direction) he couldn’t. Lemmy Kilmister said in the documentary Jimi Hendrix: Guitar Hero that the week Jimi died he was meant to audition as the bass player for the Experience and Jimi’s new project, which he (Jimi) had described to everyone as Sky Church music and that he wouldn’t do is standard ‘Act’.. The thing is, that would’ve bombed. Not because of the music or the talent, but because that’s not what fans wanted to see or hear. That is the problem here.
Since the Beatles this has been a problem in music, the idea that you can make it doing something and then expect the fame to hang around while you try something else. John found this out himself when the group parted ways and he began to work with Yoko and the Plastic Ono Band. Since then other acts have crashed and burned dancing with, their line ups, their style and their sound. Acts from Jimi Hendrix, and even Bob Dylan, in not all cases to damning effect. However since the world discovered that Nu-Metal was shit (not my personal opinion but I can see where they’re coming from, who wouldn’t try to distance themselves from Limp Bizkit and The Lost-Prophets), Linkin Park have managed to experiment and push their sound while keeping this army of fans. Moving from their early sound of Hybrid Theory (biggest selling album in 2001) and Meteora (2003) to the toned down sound of Minutes to Midnight (2007), then a 4 year break, now on the next projects there was less of MC Mike Shinoda then on the first 3 projects, between Hybrid Theory and Meteora was the Reanimation album. This was because y 2007 Nu-Metal was well and truly dead so the label and the group were unsure how fans and listeners would take to the original sound, thus leading to a toned back album. Since then each album has pushed the sound a little more with A Thousand Suns, the album following Minutes to Midnight, having the largest change in sound.
Heavy is not the first time that Linkin Park have come under fire for experimenting though as both A Thousand Suns and The Hunting have had fans asking why? The reason why I bring this topic up now is because of Heavy, note the others had been commented on as an album and here are a large group of fans passing judgment on a single. Comments filling the YouTube video like; “Linkin Pop?” “When did Taylor Swift start writing lyrics for Linkin Park”, “His sad, sad attempt of making “unnecessary” rhyme with “Panic” tells me enough about this lazy, forced and pathetic disappointment of an album.” and “So yeah,I was looking for some LP songs then I got this shit.What happened to the good old LP? kill me pls”
Last week I spoke about not passing judgment and slamming an album or a song because it’s not your cup of tea and yes, there were some redeeming comments people wanting more and other sharing this same view as me that we should let the artist to grow and change as they wish. From being a Linkin Park fan myself I can only see that the hate is because the song itself is soft, the title doesn’t appear to help this fact but being a Linkin Park fan also means that I’m used to thinking that something is not going to work, back in 2010 I thought A Thousand Suns was an awful album, 7 years on it is my favorite album they have made, what I’m saying is that I’m used to being proven wrong by this group so Chester, Mike, I’m ready to see what you guys have for me on May 19th.
Linkin Park – Heavy (Youtube)
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