We’ve been fans of Linkin Park since their debut and even enjoyed their more generic and derivative outings. At least they were loud. This new one opens like a mass-market RnB act and doesn’t really go anywhere else. There’s no loud.
We said a couple of albums ago that LP sounded as if they were working by committee (“Who wants a crash-bang loud hip hop track? Proposer? Seconder?”). Today, they’re heavy investors in Lyft, Blue Bottle Coffee Company and Shyp via their venture capital company Machine Shop Ventures. They obviously held a board meeting and decided RnB/pop offered a better return than metal, and so we got this.
Chester Benington has still got a good voice and all the best bits are his singing. Mike Shinoda, whose contribution we never really saw the point of, has now stopped being relevant in any way, the Bez of nu metal. Pusha T and our own (as in the UK’s) Stormzy provide the only decent rap.
On the plus side, Linkin Park were always good on melodies that worked in stadiums or played loud and this is still the case. Beefy, car and radio friendly, loud generic pop. Doubtless it will sell millions; doesn’t mean it’s good.