Friday, January 9, 2009

Musings on LP

I'm trying to do this new creative writing project right now involving LP's latest album, Minutes to Midnight. I'm completely blocked as far as finishing my own novel goes, so I'm trying to work out some creativity. This is strictly for my own purposes, to challenge myself into being more creative and thinking outside the proverbial box, but that's a whole other post. Anyway, the point of this post was that I want to talk about Minutes to Midnight. My project involves the order of the songs on the CD and the general themes running through the album, so I've been paying more attention to those things the last week or so since I started this and I've been thinking of the album as a whole on a different level, and I appreciate it so much more for it. I feel like I appreciate the work as a whole so much more now that I'm thinking of the album as a single work, rather than 12 individual works. I have a whole new appreciation. Don't get me wrong, There's certain albums that I think of this way, and U2's Joshua Tree as a prime example, but generally, I just listen to albums for the songs, not for the album as a work. I'm psyched.

I've read a lot of fan reviews for Minutes to Midnight, like, by hard-core, from-the-beginning kind of fans, saying they felt like this album was kind of a sell-out, it was too commercial, it was made for radio and selling to the masses. I completely disagree. I also read one review, I think on iTunes somewhere, a while ago, saying that the band was trying to grow with their original audience, who have graduated college since the first album came out, and are out acting like grown-ups now (my words, not the reviewer's), and the album has a whole new depth not present on their previous two studio albums. This seems more accurate to me. I have yet to listen to either Hybrid Theory or Meteora on this level, but I would still venture to guess that neither of those albums works the way that Minutes to Midnight does.

Some of the themes that seem to flow through the album, though, are feelings like regret and anger and loss, which is kind of a bummer, but it works, and it works well. LP is one of my favorite bands because of the complexity of their music, and I feel like Minutes to Midnight adds a new level of complexity to their repertoire. Bravo.

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