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Minutes to Midnight: Moments to Mediocrity

Linkin Park has been my favorite band every since I personally discovered them sometime in 2002. Just about everything they did over three and a half albums (I count Reanimation as a full offering; Live in Texas gets the 1/2 tag) was golden to me. Although I did enjoy songs such as Papercut and One Step Closer, it was the more varied and softer songs that retained edge that really did it for me — Crawling, Easier to Run, My December, Pushing Me Away (Remixed).

Then something happened; I’m not sure what. Linkin Park mashed with Jay-Z in Collision Course and produced a bunch of music that had no real substance despite a few offerings having some catch. But I’ve already complained about that offering, so I will move on. Mike Shinoda made it clear that he still has what it takes to make compelling music with his Fort Minor work. So, I thought maybe Linkin Park would be back on track when they finally got around to releasing their latest album, Minutes to Midnight.

In case you haven’t guessed by the title, the album sucks. It is serious, hard core complete drivel. The first song I heard from it, What I’ve Done is dull and hopelessly boring (though I will admit that it was just a bit catchy after I listened to it a few times). Still, I knew it was not going to be a song to ever infiltrate my favorites list, which is significant because 90% of Linkin Park’s tracks are in my favorites. What makes this all so much worse is that What I’ve Done, from what I’ve been able to hear, is in fact the best song on the entire album. Linkin Park has completely lost its way. This is terribly disappointing because they are capable of making music that works with me on so many levels — more so than any other band ever — and they were able to do this in so many ways, from haunting start of Crawling to the screaming end of Faint. I fear they will never make it back there. I hope I am wrong.

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