LINKIN PARK – Minutes To Midnight

LINKIN PARK - Minutes To Midnight
  • 2/10
    LINKIN PARK - Minutes To Midnight - 2/10


Release date: May 11, 2007

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

Any time one of the “big” bands release an album, expectations are high. Now, fans should know better than that, right? Of course, being “big” means mass compatibility, mainstream, commercial. Most of the time Metal fans pride themselves in the underground, the unusual, the sounds that most people relate to with a construction site. So what is it that lets fans always read the reviews, the stories about the successful bands first? Masochism, or Schadenfreude to see million sellers being bashed? Maybe it is subconscious, but anyway: read on, you will get what you want …

Linkin Park are already in their twelfth year of their career, and they managed to release their third album in 2007. Their first album, Hybrid Theory, was a NuMetal/Alternative smash hit, and the follow-up Meteora was number one in many country charts, among them Germany, USA, and the UK. While those two albums were good, even if not so original, Pop-influenced mainstream Rock with some unusual elements – Rap, NuMetal guitars – Minutes To Midnight is a possible commercially successful, but nevertheless artistically irrelevant, piece of music. The album does have some good lyrics; one has to give them that. But, if you were not tempted to buy it in the first place, you can stop reading now and use your time with something better than busying yourself with this album.

The tendencies audible in Meteora towards radio playable material are increased, and the opening track “Given Up” after the obligatory intro has a nice, but easy-to-swallow chorus, which is all too foreseeable. The Hardcore middle part is absolutely out of place and makes it no more enjoyable. Okay, we have to give them one thing: Most tracks on Minutes To Midnight are really short, which makes it almost bearable. Still, boring radio tracks like “Leave Out All The Rest” are definitely not what fans want to hear, and the next one “Bleed It Out” can only convince title-wise – otherwise this is only Soft Rock with Rap interludes.

Regardless how much Chester Bennington tries with Hardcore shouts, this track may only be okay when performed on stage; on the album it doesn’t satisfy (it is the second single, by the way). And, if you thought this was the Nadir of the album, you are wrong: “Shadow Of The Day” is pure Pop. It would make a hit single, possibly, and 15-year old girls will be really cool when they say they love “Heavy Metal Music” when listening to this track, but it’s as heavy as The Mamas And The Papas.

Then, finally, you’ll find why you have one or both of their albums in your collection. Still not original, but with the feeling for melody and drama, “What I’ve Done” is a good Alternative track. Still this is everything but heavy, but okay for a summer’s day in a convertible in Los Angeles, Cape Town, or Milan. Seems the band knew their strength too, as they made this their first single release. The single entered the top ten in Germany, US, and the UK, as you should have expected. It is the m-a-i-n-s-t-r-e-a-m charts after all! So, just now as you may finally find the opening in their walls and try to like them, they hit you with “Hands Held High,” a pure Rap track with Orchestral elements. Can you spell p-u-k-e?

As if they had known that, the heaviest track of the album follows: “No More Sorrow.” This is the best one for Metalheads, being the only one compatible to MER fans from the whole album! Finally, a guitar riff that lives up to the word! Still a heavier Pop song, but that is all the album has to offer, as after that they dive deep into the depths of exchangeable tunes you hear daily on any radio station (when they don’t play “Hotel California” twice per hour, which is preferable to any track other than “No More Sorrow” from this album).

So, to sum up the rest real quick: “Valentine’s Day” lives up to its romantic name, “In Between” is only in-between when it comes to the question “is it really boring, or just a complete waste of our time?” It does not get any more interesting, nor heavier with “In Pieces,” and the last song “The Little Things You Give Away” is a ballad, as if fans were really waiting for that!

This is a very disappointing release, as the feeling for a mixture of Hard Rock and Poppy tunes exhibited on Hybrid Theory gives way to a saturated, no-risk-taken approach to music -– which in the end will certainly prove successful and give them and Warner hit singles and incredible album sales, while thousands of other bands with better composers and more skillful musicians will split due to lack of success. The music world sucks. Big time. This is the proof.

Anyway, since the Linkin Park guys did not invent the system, to save their honor it must be stated that the two tracks “What I’ve Done” and “No More Sorrow” are worth being bought on-line, as those two dollars are about what the album is worth, which makes this a 2.0 score, does it not?


  • Frank Jaeger

    Frank was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio, based out of Bavaria, Germany. He has worked in the games industry for more than 20 years, now on the manufacturing side, before on the publishing end. Before this, he edited and handled the layout for a city mag in northern Germany ... maybe that is why he love being part of anything published. Frank got hooked on Metal at the age of 14 when a friend introduced him to AC/DC. They were listening to The Beatles, Madness, and The Police, and he decided they should move on. Well, they did, Back in Black became Frank's first Metal album, and since Germany is reasonably close to England, they had some small New Waves Of British Heavy Metal washing up on their shores: Tygers Of Pan Tang, Samson, Gillan, Iron Maiden, Saxon, Sweet Savage, Diamond Head, etc. If he had to pick his favorite styles, Prog and Power Metal would be at the top of the list.

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