Some Success in the Big Risk
It’s Linkin Park — just maybe not the group to which many have grown accustomed; in fact, the change is quite drastic. The sound present throughout the group’s seventh studio album is far more pop-influenced, almost to the point where it feels as if the band was chasing the years old house movement that spread itself so swiftly across the globe. Despite all of this, the songs feel more or less the same. The little fluctuations are subtle and short-lived.
At times, One More Light seems as if it were searching only for the single hit as many of the songs sound oddly similar. Both “Battle Symphony” and “Invisible” sound far too alike, all the while remaining attached to Linkin Park’s newly synthesized overtones. A sound which has been in development since the start of the millennia. One with droning piano synths, sharp bass and that “all is good in the world” mentality. Again, it’s the collaborations which bring the best tracks. “Good Goodbye,” featuring Pusha T and “Heavy” featuring Kiiara, are most notable in their ability in their attempt to step away from the traditional. Although not so much a boundary pusher, One More Light does point to the fact that Linkin Park is looking to break from the mold. In the end, however, the album has reached number one on the Billboard Top 100 so kudos to the boys from Agoura Hills for sifting through the noise and creating the album they wanted to create.
The backlash has been intense and it must be frustrating to hear so much negative feedback for merely trying to find a new sound. It’s a risk to attempt such a feat and one has to respect each member of the band for willingly working to concoct One More Light with a new energy so vastly different from that of Linkin Park’s previous productions. And, while it’s easy to understand why so many would be disappointed in One More Light, it is also important to comprehend the need to take creative risks. Linkin Park could’ve stuck with the mold they created some seventeen years ago and played it safe, but they didn’t. Quite often, this can crush a group. However, in this case, it paid off big time. For most, this is not the case.
Ideally, in music and other facets of life, risks should be taken and taken often. Without any experimentation how can there ever be a track or album that truly sounds fresh? Even though One More Light does, in fact, sound like a mishmash of over-popularized superstars, it signifies a transition for a band who’s been around long enough to make what they want.