Forming in 1996, Linkin Park wanted to do something a bit different to what was around at the time. They wanted to combine rock with hip hop and bring in huge funky beats and unique elements of hip hop and mix them with heavy riff driven guitars. The band would not really be fully, complete with it’s now stable line up, until 1999.
The band had their mainstream success arrive pretty early into their beginnings as a band after that and in 2000, the band released Hybrid Theory on Warner Brothers Records to huge success. The album peaked incredibly highly worldwide and was generally received well by critics. The album has also retched platinum status in almost every country, multiple times platinum in some cases. It even acquired Diamond status in the US which means it has gone platinum 10 times or more, which is just insane.
Linkin Park followed up their mainstream success with a remix album and totally recorded all the tracks from Hybrid Theory in a totally new style on Reanimation in 2002. All the songs on this album featured a huge scope and showed the elements that the band could do away from the rock elements of their records. This was emphasised by the hip hop and electronica artists they brought in.
The bands next album was Meteora released in 2003. This was a totally new album featuring totally new nu metal tracks. It has been certified platinum x4 by the RIAA in the US. It was mostly received well by critics despite the dispassion that was arising from the nu metal genre. But Linkin Park kept their lyrics radio friendly in nature and length and the album was short and sweet. The album did very well, reaching number 1 in many countries.
The band would collaborate with Jay-Z next on 2004’s Collision Course. They would mix some of their classic tracks with some of his classic tracks and would ultimately take the hip hop element even further, leaving behind the rock a little more again.
The band would not return with another release until 2007 with a new album and that album was Minutes to Midnight. Gone was any elements of hip hop entirely and the band had changed their sound to something completely more mainstream. The album was written well enough but completely lacked that previous Linkin Park spark for many fans And some critics who said they were bland in their attempt. Other critics did receive the album well and it reached number in a large amount of countries.
It wouldn’t be until 2010 when the band would release their next studio album, A Thousand Suns. The album was met with mixed reviews from both fans and critics, some hailing the album as the ultimate risk taking album that the band succeeded with, others concluding that they didn’t like the new sounding Linkin Park as it was mostly bland. However, the album sold well, reaching number one on many charts worldwide and has been certified gold or platinum in many countries.
Linkin Park’s fifth studio album is their latest. In 2012, the band released Living Things. Like their previous releases it charted incredibly in it’s first week and then dropped off rather rapidly. The reviews were again mixed, some praising the risks the band were taking again by refusing to play it safe, others just saying that the band need to stop making albums that were marketing ploys depending on the sounds that were big at the time. It has only been certified platinum in two countries, it is only gold in the rest.
The band in 2013 released yet another remix album, whether that was to prove the critics wrong that they still like to mix up genres and do stuff a little different or what, I don’t know because the band have already worked on and are now ready to release their latest release, The Hunting Party.
The band have just released new tracks and whilst they seem to be some of their rockiest in years, they still seem to lack the ability to combine different genres and create something a little more unique again. Luckily for fans like myself who prefer the old Linkin Park sound, they are to play Hybrid Theory in full at Download Festival. We for one cannot wait for the old material and we’re still anticipating the new material too, always remember to keep an open mind, but after all you can’t please everyone.
Breaking The Habit
In The End
Bleed It Out
Photo Credit: Brandon Cox