Linkin Park is an outlier. The band's risky creative choices – swinging wildly from song to song, album to album – are a hallmark of their career. Few artists effortlessly blend genres, emotions, and ideas with a voice as signature as Linkin Park's. They are, after all, the architects of the inimitable "Hybrid Theory," the only band proven to be as at-home on stage with Jay-Z as with Metallica, Steve Aoki, and Paul McCartney.
For any career artist, making new material matter can be the biggest challenge. Inspiration is a fickle thing, and past success often draws a bar that is hard to overcome. But once in a while, unexpectedly, lightning strikes – and an artist we think we know goes somewhere we didn't know was possible. Miraculously, Linkin Park's seventh studio album One More Light does just that. And it doesn't achieve it by being louder or bigger, more avant garde or more dramatic. It achieves it by being more human.
One More Light is a moment in time. It's built on personal stories, sweat-stained and reeling from injuries – the product of six voices, each coming clean about their lives and struggles, as if it were the first time. We get an unobstructed view into what makes the band tick as people, fathers, husbands, musicians, and friends. Looking back, there were signs of One More Light in Linkin Park's earlier releases. There has always been a catharsis in the lyrics, and genre-bending in the sounds. One More Light continues that tradition, but with a perspective and craftsmanship that only a band of this caliber could command.