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I stopped by target today on my (extended) way home from work to pick up a battery for a stopwatch that had stopped working. While there, I noticed some good deals on some DVDs, so I picked a few up. While in the media section, I also noticed that Linkin Park has a new release.

I’ve been waiting for just such a thing. Reanimation, Linkin Park’s follow-up to the hugely successful Hybrid Theory, was the album that, up to this point, I was most skeptical of, because it wasn’t just Linkin Park, but included various guess artists, most of whom I had never heard of. But I was happy after getting it, because it turns out that the remixed songs made some interesting music still (With You, Forgotten), and a few songs even got monumentally better (such as Pushing Me Away), or at least stayed as good while being refreshingly different (Crawling, My December). Of course, it also had its sub-par material (In The End, High Voltage). It is interesting to note that the songs in Reanimation which improved the most were redone by Linkin Park themselves (actually, just Mike Shinoda, whose work on Pushing Me Away and Crawling is fantastic). The songs that Linkin Park had the least influence on generally degraded the most.

When Meteora, Linkin Park’s second real album came out, I quickly snatched it up, and was quite happy with the evolving sound. Live in Texas proved to be a fun but mostly useless followup, as only one song changed at all (Crawling was a mix of the Hybrid Theory and Reanimation versions). To appease us, I guess they decided to do some more joint work, this time with a better known artist. Let me be gentle and just say, there is a reason I don’t buy Jay-Z albums. After hearing one demo (easily obtainable online, but I won’t link it because I don’t endorse it), I decided that this album wasn’t for me – and this is big news because its the first time I’ve made that decision with anything involving Linkin Park.

Sure, the track is somewhat catchy, but thats just because it uses a tried and true tune (Numb). Add in the Jay-Z and it still holds some sway, but then try to put the Numb Lyrics back over that, and it just doesn’t work. At all. It’s not unique, it’s not interesting, and it’s not good. I suspect the entire album is that way. In addition, its got a parental advisory label, which means, along with its tradition of generally good music, Linkin Park also decided to ditch its tradition of genreally clean music as well. Two regrettable decisions, all in one album. Lets hope it does poorly in stores. I don’t have much hope for that, though. Too many dumbtards or something.

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