YMMV / Linkin Park

Opinions on the band range from "original, creative, and awesome enough to be their own genre" to "insufferably emo."
  • And You Thought It Would Fail:
    • Many fans' reactions to Reanimation, due to the fact that it was a huge risk to have a remix album after only the first studio album. However, to this day it is popular with the fanbase.
    • "Nobody's Listening" is a Take That! to people who thought this of the band in general.
  • Audience-Alienating Premise: While every Linkin Park album not named Hybrid Theory or Meteora has generally received eye-rolls and groans from finicky fans, the reaction to One More Light being a straight up contemporary pop album with virtually no rock instrumentation or rapping, the farthest-removed from anything they'd ever done prior, was volatile. Both fans and detractors called it the only Linkin Park album that sounded as if it was by anyone other than Linkin Park.
  • Author's Saving Throw: Chester attempted one regarding his poor behavior after being called out by Corey Taylor.
    Chester: "…I agree with him. I do appreciate our fans… I'm human and sometimes take things too personally. Most of our fans have been very positive lately. Some… not so much. Either way… there is a lot of passion on both sides and I am grateful to all of our fans. Corey is a good dude and I appreciate him too… Time to recalibrate my perspective. So I say to all of our fans… Thank you and I love you all. Peace, love and happiness."
  • Awesome Music: Almost every single they've released. Very much so that they have their own page.
  • Better Than Canon: While the original version of "Numb" is still considered to be one of their best songs, the mashup they did with Jay-Z's "Encore" take everything great about both songs and makes it better, as the minor key melody better compliment's Jay's lyrics and gives weight to what was once a generic Boastful Rap. It was one of the biggest hit singles for both acts, reaching #1 on the charts and bringing together both rock and rap fans in the process. Jay-Z also liked the mashup of "99 Problems" and LP's "Points Of Authority" and "One Step Closer" enough to include a snippet of it in his live shows.
  • Broken Base
    • It would be easier to list the stylistic phases that the band went through that didn't divide fans: are only their first two albums worthwhile? Is everything after worthwhile? Were they always good? Was their weaker stuff really that bad, or was it just not as good as their better stuff? And the mother of them all: should they have stuck with Nu Metal or not?
    • More controversially, there's some debate about whether One More Light is better with the knowledge that it was more personal than the "generic pop" label it was slapped with upon release, or if it's still not good and is only getting more positive feedback because people don't want to speak ill of him now that he's dead.
  • Catharsis Factor: A big appeal to the band's music. What better way to deal with repressed anger than with loud guitars, angsty lyrics and metal screaming?
  • Counterpart Comparison: A Thousand Suns is often compared favorably to Kid A, an experimental electronic album by an established rock band (and, coincidentally, both bands' fourth albums) which was initially written off as a failed attempt to be "artful", but has now divided the fanbase into those who think it's either the best or worst album.
  • Dead Horse Genre: Why the band decided to move on from Nu Metal after their first two albums, for better or worse. Ironically, Minutes To Midnight was criticized for capitalizing on alternative rock and emo just as those genres were losing steam (and for not being nu metal).
  • Dead Artists Are Better: After Chester's death, many music publications began re-evaluating the band's music more positively. Stereogum praised them as the last big rock band to make a huge debut, concluding that the constant Genre Shifting is what helped them maintain their relevance before the major changes in the music industry made it next to impossible for a rock band to ever reach those kinds of heights. Others put a more positive spin on their unflattering "emo" label by saying that the unambiguous angst of their music was hugely cathartic for people with depression, with droves of millennials coming out on social media to back this claim up.
  • Discredited Meme: Chester Bennington's suicide brought a giant sledgehammer to the criticisms of his music being "whiny", as it proved once and for all that the perceived wangst was not a put-on or an exaggeration.
  • Dork Age: For a certain part of the fanbase, it started the moment Minutes to Midnight hit the shelves and the band officially decided to move away from the very distinct style they made a name for themselves with. Whether or not they ever got out of it depends entirely on who you ask.
  • Ear Worm: Pick a song.
  • Epic Riff: "One Step Closer", "Faint", and the distinctive piano notes of "In the End".
  • Face of the Band: Chester Bennington, Mike Shinoda, and…?
    • Brad Delson gets some recognition, if only for the Funny Afro, and Mr. Hahn is well known, or at least he was during their early years. Rob Bourdon and Dave "Phoenix" Farrell, however? Not so much.
  • Fandom Rivalry:
    • Many Deftones fans are resentful towards Linkin Park for allegedly copying the band's sound. The Deftones are indeed a major influence on the band, although many Linkin Park fans enjoy the Deftones, and the two bands have gone on tour together many times.
    • There's also one between LP and Limp Bizkit fans, arguments over which band is better are common, though LP have admitted to being fans of LB.
  • Funny Moments:
    I hate my rhymes/But hate everyone else's more.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment:
    • The Xero demo "Reading My Eyes" features Mike rapping that he is "the microphone molester". A couple of years later, Chester Bennington would join the band, and had been tormented by people at school calling him "Chester the molester" (not helped by the fact he actually was molested for six years as a child). One can imagine him wincing when hearing those lyrics (Chester tried to roll with it a while, wearing a "Chester the Molester" t-shirt in the band's early days). Not surprisingly, it wasn't rerecorded until 2006 as a fan request.
    • While promoting The Hunting Party, notable for being their only straight-up rock album, the band griped about how too many rock bands were changing their sound too much until they just sounded like generic pop. Then came One More Light, where the band completely abandoned their rock sound for generic pop.
    • After Chester's suicide, a lot of the band's more angsty songs ("Numb", "Breaking the Habit", "Given Up", "What I've Done", "Heavy") went from narmtastic "angry white boy" music to an unambiguous cry for help from a seriously depressed person.
  • Gateway Series:
    • Let's just say more than a few metalheads were introduced to hard rock/metal through this band. Whether or not they admit it is another story. And if you're young enough and have not heard any of the Beastie Boys, Linkin Park could have also been a gateway to the "eccentric" Alternative Rock scene with bands like U2 and The Cure, due to their experimenting with electronic and Hip-Hop elements.
    • An AfroPunk article released shortly after Chester Bennington's death mentioned how the band was especially integral in getting black kids into hard rock. Not only was their music heavily influenced by hip-hop (their mashup album with Jay-Z was a huge help), but it offered kids of color the opportunity to express the kind of cathartic anger they otherwise never got.
  • Growing the Beard: A Thousand Suns was supposed to be this. Whether or not it succeeded depends on who you ask.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: A lot of things in the wake of Chester's suicide:
    • He jumps to his death in the video for "Breaking The Habit".
    • Chester was close friends with Chris Cornell, who had also committed suicide by hanging mere weeks earlier. Chester's suicide happened on what would have been Cornell's 53rd birthday.
      • Not only that, but Chester performed "Hallelujah" at Chris' funeral. Two weeks later, it could ironically be counted as a song dedicated to Chester himself.
    • Chester's violent outbursts at the negative response to One More Light now seem less like him just being a prima donna and an early sign of the pent-up anger that would eventually consume him.
    • The chorus to "In the End".
    I tried so hard and got so far
    In the end, it doesn't even matter
    I had to fall to lose it all
    But in the end, it doesn't even matter
    • These lyrics from "Shadow of the Day":
    In cards and flowers on your window
    Your friends all plead for you to stay
    Sometimes beginnings aren't so simple
    Sometimes goodbye's the only way
    • The chorus of "Somewhere I Belong," which is about letting go of the pain he felt so long.
    I want to heal
    I want to feel
    What I thought was never real
    I want to let go of the pain I felt so long (Erase all the pain 'til it's gone)
    I want to heal
    I want to feel
    Like I'm close to something real
    I want to find something I've wanted all along
    Somewhere I belong
    • "Easier to Run," especially the second verse:
    Sometimes I remember
    The darkness of my past,
    Bringing back these memories
    I wish I didn't have.
    Sometimes I think of letting go
    And never looking back
    And never moving forward so
    There'd never be a past.
    • "Forgotten":
    In the memory you'll find me
    Eyes burning up
    The darkness holding me tightly
    Until the sun rises up
    • "Bleed It Out" (though Mike raps it out himself):
    Filthy mouth, no excuse
    Find a new place to hang this noose
    String me up from atop these roofs
    Knot it tight so I won't get loose
    • The chorus of "Nobody's Listening." It sounds like he's telling you point blank that something is wrong and he needs help.
    Tried to give you warning but everyone ignores me
    (Told you everything loud and clear)
    But nobody's listening
    Called to you so clearly but you don't want to hear me
    (Told you everything loud and clear)
    But nobody's listening
    • "Waiting For The End" is a similar case to "Leave Out All The Rest", as the singer is begging forgiveness for some wrongs he said in the past and declares a sincere desire to move on.
    What was left when that fire was gone?
    I thought it felt right but that right was wrong
    All caught up in the eye of the storm
    And trying to figure out what it's like moving on
    And I don't even know what kind of things I said
    My mouth kept moving and my mind went dead
    So I'm picking up the pieces, now where to begin
    The hardest part of ending is starting again
    • "Leave Out All The Rest" becomes even more chilling if you think that the lines "Forget the wrong that I've done" and "Don't resent me" seem to foreshadow his angry outbursts months before his death in regards to the backlash One More Light received.
      • Related to all of the above lyrical quotes, Chester didn't leave a suicide note, but looking back on the band's whole discography (especially One More Light), it's easy to read Chester's entire body of work as one long suicide note, like all of the evidence was there in plain sight and nobody noticed.
    • Chester had another band as a side project called Dead by Sunrise. He was pronounced dead at 9 AM the day he committed suicide.
    • Just before his death, he had been gushing on Twitter about his love for Twenty One Pilots, a band known for their lyrics about depression and especially suicidal thoughts. It's a stretch to think that their music caused his suicide, but the fact that he was listening to them so much at the time showed that it was heavy on his mind.
    • In the behind-the-scenes video for "Heavy," Chester says that when his double, Rory, makes it as an actor, then Chester will repay Rory by becoming his stunt double. That will never happen.
    • Lyrically, One More Light sounds like one of Chester's most personal albums. Musically, it was widely criticized as the one Linkin Park album that sounded nothing like Linkin Park. Even up until the end, nobody wanted to hear what he had to say.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • "One Step Closer" and "Numb", two of Linkin Park's most well-known songs, share the same names with two lesser-known U2 songs. Now, what was one of the complaints about "Shadow of the Day"? The fact that U2's "One Step Closer" came out four years after LP's song doesn't make this any less funny.
    • Mike's side project is most known for "Remember the Name", though most people couldn't tell who performs it if they heard it. Also hilarious is that Fort Minor's actual big hit was "Where'd You Go?", which has gone out of people's memories whereas "Remember the Name" is the song that is "remembered" today.
    • After Idina Menzel's "Let It Go" in Frozen made a much bigger impression on pop culture than "Iridescent", the repetition of the lyrics "Do you feel cold and lost in desperation?" and "Let it go" are hilarious to listen to.
    • In "High Voltage", from their 1999 Hybrid Theory EP, Mike Shinoda dissed Top 40 radio when calling out all the "phony rappers" on the market. Guess what crowd they shifted their sound to appeal to nearly twenty years later?
  • Internet Backdraft:
    • Go ahead, try telling a metalhead that Linkin Park is metal.
    • Chester's increasingly furious outbursts towards fans for most of 2017 (performing a heavier version of "Heavy" for rehearsal and snapping "there's your fucking Hybrid Theory!", threatening violence against anyone who called him a sellout or told him to go back to his old sound) convinced a lot of fans that he was too thin-skinned to defend anymore. The whole thing lead to a beef between him and Corey Taylor, who told Chester to stop being ungrateful. As mentioned above, the whole chain of events was presumably a result of him hitting rock-bottom with his depression, and whether or not that excuses his bad attitude, everything that happened as a result seems to have only made it worse.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks: Many of the responses from fans towards Meteora, as well as Reanimation due the mere nature of a remix album (especially one so early in the band's career).
  • Just Here for Godzilla: Had the One More Light arena tour gone as planned, it's safe to assume that most of the concertgoers would have been there for their old material (noticing a pattern here?).
  • Love It or Hate It: Everything after Meteora were either successful experiments that proved that the band were capable of evolving as credible artists, or miserable failures that scrubbed them of everything that made them unique. Nowhere is this more apparent than with A Thousand Suns, generally regarded as their most experimental album and either their best or their worst.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "CRAAAAAWWWWWWWWLIIIIIIINGGG INNNNNNN MY SKIIIIIIIIIIIIIN!! THESE WOOOOOOUUUUNDS THEYY WILLLLLL NOT HEEEEE-ALLLLLL!!!" has basically become the theme song for mocking Emo Teens. Although as mentioned above, Chester Bennington's death seems to have taken this joke with it.
    • We have a rapist in Linkin Park.
    • Where is the Old LP?
    • "Try the ketchup, motherfucker!"note 
    • I tried so hard, and got so far…
      • The funny thing is when some people tried putting these lines on a Facebook comment, Facebook refused to let it be posted because of its "suicidal themes". No really. Of course, considering what happened to Chester, they most likely were.
  • Misaimed Fandom:
    • Chester wrote "Crawling" about his struggles with abuse as a child, and "Papercut" about his struggling with meth addiction. Both quickly became anthems for suburban teenagers bitching about First World Problems. This was a major catalyst for the band wanting to move away from the nu-metal genre.
    • Similar to the above, "One Step Closer" is seen as an angst anthem when it's really just about the band getting mad at their producer for making them do endless retakes of "Runaway."
      • "Bleed It Out" sounds like it's a song about self harm, but it's just as meta as "One Step Closer".
    • "Valentine's Day" is often labeled as an emo teen break-up. It's actually about a funeral.
    And the ground below grew colder
    As they put you down inside…
  • Misattributed Song:
    • Can't find info on a certain song? Make sure it's not by Fort Minor, Grey Daze, Dead By Sunrise, or Tribal Ink (or Kansas of all things).
    • Also, that's not Shinoda rapping on Evanescence's "Bring Me to Life". That's Paul McCoy of 12 Stones.
  • Narm: "I bleed it out, digging deeper just to throw it away…" Uh, is Chester talking about self-mutilation or tampons? (Neither, it turns out.)
  • Narm Charm: Chester's Metal Scream. So over the top, and that's exactly what makes it so awesome!
  • Never Live It Down
    • Despite all of their conscious efforts to no longer do nu-metal music, the band will always be remembered as being the definitive nu-metal act. Both fans and detractors have used this to piss off the band, with detractors forever linking them to their Misaimed Fandom of "angry white boys" and fans all but demanding that they go back to playing their older style.
    • Though it's now seen as an early sign of his eventually fatal depression, Chester telling fans who didn't like One More Light to go "stab themselves in the face" and threatening to "punch out" anyone who says they are selling out will not be forgotten anytime soon.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Now has its own page.
  • Older Than They Think: The 2010s-era electropop sound that One More Light was famously blasted for was not the first time the band recorded music like that. Their first attempt at that style was, of all things, a collaboration with The Lonely Island two years earlier called "Things In My Jeep," off the soundtrack to Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping.
  • Painful Rhyme: Mike actually had the gall to rhyme "monkey" with "funky" on "When They Come for Me".
  • Periphery Demographic: As mentioned above, the band has had a dedicated African American audience from the beginning, mostly due to their hip-hop influence. Lupe Fiasco himself has said that Hybrid Theory is one of his favorite albums of all time.
  • Seinfeld Is Unfunny: The band's signature combination of Nu Metal, Alternative Rock, Hip-Hop, various Electronic Music subgenres and Pop sensibility was fairly original for its time; nowadays, thanks to all the imitators, they're often accused of having copied their signature sound from some other band.
    • They caught onto this pretty quickly and wanted to do a stylistic overhaul right after Hybrid Theory, but Executive Meddling kept them from doing so until Minutes To Midnight.
    • Newsweek even stated that Hybrid Theory's massive success is what laid the blueprints for what rock music would evolve into, and that many of the present-day rock bands take their influence directly from that album.
  • Signature Song: "In The End", primarily. "Crawling" and "Numb" are also contenders. After changing styles, "What I've Done", "New Divide", and "Burn It Down" fit this.
    • Tragically, "One More Light", which fans (and even critics) connected to Chester after his death.
  • Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped: "Heavy" isn't the slightest bit subtle with describing what it's like to have depression. Considering that the person who wrote it killed himself not long after it was released, it's important that it be heard.
    • "One More Light" pretty much states the reflection of losing someone you care about and how you still care for them in a world of a million, also reflecting on those who probably don't know said person but still caring for them as "one more light in a sky of a million stars". It's no surprise the song became its own tribute to Chester after his passing.
  • So Okay, It's Average: Many people feel this way about their post-Meteora albums.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song:
    • "Shadow of the Day" sounds quite similar to "With or Without You", and various remixes combining the songs can be found online. Likewise, the intro to "What I've Done" and the Halloween theme.
    • "Heavy" sounds almost exactly like "Closer", complete with having a female guest singer getting a verse and singing in a duet.
    • The main chorus of "Heavy" also sounds similar to the Paul Walker tribute song "See You Again", several remixes combining the songs can be found online also.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks: While far from the only ones, Linkin Park are easily one of the most notorious examples of a band whose decision to depart from their Signature Style was met with nothing but contempt, if only because theirs was so distinct. Critical reception from Minutes To Midnight on has been generally middling or negative, often referring to their newer styles as "bland." More notoriously, the reception from fans of their Nu Metal material has ranged from indifferent and frustrated to entitled and volatile, some even outright demanding that they record more songs that sound like their older ones, or getting offended that they weren't "warned" about these changes. The band has made it quite clear that they hate this reputation and that they don't want to be forced into not evolving as artists.
  • Vindicated by History: Each New Sound Album tends to get this once the hoopla over the different musical style dies down (or, in worse cases, isn't thought to suck as much as the new album).
    • Meteora was seen as a cheap rehash of Hybrid Theory when it came out, but is now considered an improvement on the groundwork it laid, especially since it's their only other album to feature their Signature Style. Those who like their later stuff also appreciate that it showed the early signs of the more experimental music they'd eventually do.
    • Minutes to Midnight was once the most hated Linkin Park album for being the most generic in their library until that title was taken by One More Light. Now, while agreed that it's not perfect, it's gotten a more positive response for at least being rock music.
    • A Thousand Suns, once considered by some as one of their worst albums, is now acknowledged as having some of their best songs.
    • While still seen as their weakest album, One More Light has seen a tiny bit more acceptance in the wake of Chester's suicide, especially since, once you get past the very un-Linkin Park pop sound, it's lyrically his most personal. At the very least, people generally seem a bit more willing to accept his negative attitude towards the album's reception less of him being a prima donna, and more as a sign that he was not in a good place.
    • Really, the band itself! In the beginning, Linkin Park's reputation for angsty lyrics and performing the oft-mocked genre of nu-metal labeled them "whiny" music for angry white boys, a title they could never disassociate themselves from no matter how hard they tried. After Bennington's death, these same critics began to re-evaluate their music with the knowledge that the supposed wangst was a depressed man purging his demons, giving them a better appreciation for their angry music and their later experimentation.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: A lot of their music videos (beginning with In The End) tend to use extensive amounts of cutting-edge CGI.
  • Wangst: "Crawling" is a pretty good example to some, even though it's about genuine pain. Ditto with "Numb". Though as previously mentioned, Chester's suicide has made people see that there's more to these songs.
  • We're Still Relevant, Dammit!: One More Light was hit with this bad when it was first announced. A 17-year-old rock band doing Chainsmokers-style electropop reeked of desperation.
  • Win Back the Crowd: The Hunting Party was the band's lone attempt to appease fans who desperately wanted to hear them play rock music again. While generally well-received, it was praised more in theory than in execution and didn't leave much of an impression. And then One More Light happened…
  • WTH, Casting Agency?: Anybody else thinks it's a little strange to hear Chester on the same song as G-Unit's Young Buck?
    • This is how many people felt about Stormzy's verse on "Good Goodbye", with the main criticism being that it's too cringe-inducing and self-indulgent.
  • The Woobie: Chester, full stop. Was sexually abused from the age of six onward, suffered from depression and substance abuse for years as a result, all before the age of 18, and was briefly homeless before joining the band Despite his sunny disposition and otherwise well-off adult life, with bandmates that considered him a brother, a big family of six kids, a loving wife and even an amicable ex, the combined anxieties all weighed on him his entire life until finally getting the better of him (a sadly all-too-frequent occurrence for people dealing with depression).

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/LinkinPark