Sound — 8
Ok Minutes to Midnight sees LP branch of into a new sound that is very different from their classic Nu-Metal sound which they had in the early 2000's. This sees them go into a softer alternative rock sound. Well I'll start off by saying that nearly every song on this album is a ballad with some exceptions like Given Up and No More Sorrow. I did not find this disappointing as I thought it was a time for change in Linkin Parks sound because their music was getting repetitive. In this record Chester and Mike both use different vocal techniques with Mike rapping less and actually singing on In Between. Brad (the guitarist) does to solos, one that is pretty fast (In Pieces) and one slow (the Little things give you away he also does a weird(but good riff) in Bleed It Out. Mr Hahn also does a lot less scratching of the turntables. Overall this is a really good sound and very soothing in some songs. I like it a lot (I think every song is good) but am kind of disappointed in the lack of rapping in Mikes part.
Lyrics — 9
Lyrics have taken a change from their previous work as the band has matured and experienced a lot more in their lives (anyway a couple of 30 year olds singing about teen angst and sadness would sound weird right? e.g. Fred Durst). Chester has gone through a divorce and remarried so some of his lyrics revolve around that aspect. Mike in Hands Held High Raps about the war in Iraq and George Bush showing strong political views and Chester sings about Hurricane Katrina since he had visited there and seen the devastation it had caused. Mainly the lyrics deal with pain and anger and political issues. Chester uses a much softer voice in this album in some songs (Little things give you away, Valentines day) but in others shouts his head off (Given up, No More Sorrow) and even includes a 19 second long scream in Given Up. I think the lyrics were very meaningful and powerful but I think they could have used a bit of work at some places like Bleed It Out since I find it kind of lacking in Chester's Part.
Overall Impression — 10
Overall I find M2M to be some of the bands best work. I was disappointed in some aspects like Mike's lack of rapping and Mr Hahn's lack of visibility musically but they are minimal in the overall sound and feel of this album. Some of the best songs are Bleed It Out, No More Sorrow, Given Up and Valentines Day. This was one of the highlights in 2007 as I saw it as a lacking year with it being dominated by Pop Rock and Pop Punk bands which were bad. In the subject of individual band member work, the band has stepped up with Rob Bourdon the drummer and Brad Delson both stepping up and giving the fans something fresh and new and Mike Shinoda doing some very good rhythm guitar work. Chester shows us his softer side while Phoenix (the bassist) does some really cool bass work (Given Up, What I've Done). If I lost this CD I would definitely buy it again as it is some of the bands best work. I really enjoyed every song in this album (even though some songs took some time to get used to). I would recommend this album to anyone who could handle a change in sound for LP and who likes a more soft sound for them.