Linkin Park - Underground v6.0 EP Review
by Eric Smith
A few years have passed since Linkin Park's last 2003 outing "Meteora" came about. While many critics agreed that their sound had changed so little, fans still ate up the band like candy, and the record sales showed it. It is 2007 now, and it seems that Linkin Park have taken a cue from the band Tool when it comes to prolonged record releases. The new Linkin Park Underground v6.0 EP, however, gives us a taste of their new record due sometime this year. Many of you readers might be thinking "Why is Eric reviewing this? In fact, why did he even REQUEST to review it?" Well, gentle reader... I have high hopes for any band, especially ones that take such a hiatus as Linkin Park has.
"Announcement Service Public" starts out the EP, and it is labeled as an "instrumental". Now, for any of you that are familiar with many classic metal instrumentals (Metallica's "Orion" and Mastodon's "Bladecatcher" come to mind automatically) I can assure you this does not even begin to touch them as far as musical complexity is concerned. It is mostly an ambient track with LP vocalist Chester Bennington screaming backwards "You Should Brush Your Teeth And You Should Wash Your Hands." ever so FAINTly (hahaha, good one there) in the background. There is just really not much going on here...
The next track entitled "Qwerty" is what should really wet the appetites of music critics everywhere. On this track, we have a new and improved Linkin Park with a sound somewhat similar to their previous records, but totally different all the same. The guitars have a somewhat "Metallica/St. Anger" sludgy kinda sound to them, but the music is surprisingly uptempo and dare I say "heavy" in some parts. Chester also seems to have finally dropped his pair, and screams his guts out through the song. But of course, the melodic, radio-friendly choruses and flowing rap lines from Mike Shinoda are still ever-present...
The rest of the EP consists of live tracks of "Qwerty", a piano remix of "Pushing me Away", "Breaking the Habit", and a special performance of the song "Reading My Eyes" from when the band was still called Xero.
In conclusion, this is a very interesting review for me because I have pretty much been anti-Linkin Park since I have known about them. This EP, however, shows that maybe the new album might be worth a listen. They seem to be broadening their sound and amping up the aggression just a tad bit. Maybe Linkin Park will surprise all of us staunch metalheads this year.
1. "Announcement Service Public" – 2:22
2. "Qwerty" – 3:21
3. "Qwerty" (Live) – 3:54
4. "Pushing Me Away" (Live) (Piano Version) – 3:30
5. "Breaking the Habit" (Live) – 5:20
6. "Reading My Eyes" (Live) – 3:17
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