Linkin Park – Minutes To Midnight

As a huge Linkin Park fan, I had high expectations for this album, which Minutes to Midnight has lived up too. Linkin Park have took a chance with this album, something I deeply respect and believe it has paid off for them. The album is more mature musically and lyrically than their past efforts as it deals with political and social issues skilfully and subtlely.

The album is a real mix of songs, heavier tracks such as Given Up and the heaviest they’ve ever written No More Sorrow, energise the album with fierce brutality. Whilst softer songs such as Leave Out All The Rest and Valentine’s Day complements them yet still hold power over the listener. The album begins with the instrumental track Wake, which allows Linkin Park to show the listener that they have broken the sound with a more organic and developed approach than they have used before, which is apparent in all tracks until the album is beautifully concluded with The Little Things Give you Away, one of the bands finest moment.

The melodies album is sincere and beautifully crafted, and has been a breath of fresh air amongst all other recent releases which often lack proper melodies, they really have took the time to make this album special and have used as many tools they can from oboes, violas and pianos to blazing guitars and samples to add layers and complexity to the music, without it being over the top. A perfect example is the beautiful but not flashy guitar solos present on In Pieces and The Little Things Give You Away, that have been absent on past releases from the band. The music is then perfectly graced with Chester Bennington’s vocals, which vary from beautiful melodic singing to vicious snarling and screaming. Listeners who are familiar with their past releases will notice the lack of vocals from Mike Shinoda who takes lead for only 3 tracks: Bleed It Out, Hands Held High, and In Between, which the band have been criticised for but on the other hand some listeners may prefer. But the music defiantly has his imprint on, he also provides Bennington with back up vocals on many of the tracks.

If you are going to buy the album, I strongly advise you to but this special edition, the package is just beautiful, the best I have ever seen. The cover is wrapped in linen, with an embossed LP logo underneath the slip case over the top. Inside there is beautiful art and photos from the studio alongside the lyrics. Also included is a DVD, which if you get the guys goofy sense of humour is both amusing and insightful into the making of the album and to the making of their first video from the album for What I’ve Done, its defiantly worth the extra money.

Minutes to Midnight is a huge achievement for the band, and I congratulate them for it.

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Libertad

I’ve finally got round to give the new Velvet Revolver album, Libertad, a proper listen. I like it, especially when its played loud, it gives the immense guitars more emphasis. It sounds more of a group effort than Contraband does, obviously because they were already working on it before Scott joined, but still.

Also I read and interview with Spinal Tap in which David St Hubbins says that: “I had my mid-;life crisis years ago, when I was 24, I think that’s the time to do it: when you’re young and healthy.” I defiantly need to buy a Spinal Tap album, the This Is one, with Big Bottoms and Stonehenge on.

I keep shopping in Sainsburys and they keep giving me things who win prizes, I’ve won everytime, but I keep winning 2 for 1’s or money off theme park/zoo entry tickets. Which is annoying because I don’t like theme parks and don’t agree with zoos. But I’d be moaning if I hadn’t won anything so its ok.

OO and I watched James may 20th Century thing, it was so good, very interesting and James May was so funy in the old cars.

I’ve been cleaning/sorting out my stuff in my room so now you don’t have to jump over things, I’ve found some stuff I no longer want so I’m going to try to sell them on ebay/amazon.

Worst of all though, I have started reviewing things on play.com, it started when I was looking at the beauty of Minutes to Midnight and the reviews there just didn’t get the album, so I had to do one, now I can’t stop reviewing.