Daily Song Study

Linkin Park – Iridescent

In songs on September 7, 2011 at 10:36 am

Today’s study involves two elements. One is the aforementioned zeitgeist, or spirit of the times. The other is artistic growth and redemption.

On the zeitgeist front, there have been few (if any) albums since the beginning of the global financial crisis that have truly captured the unease and trepidation that many of us feel in this climate. So it was a bit surprising to me to find that the one that captures it almost perfectly is done by a band who previously I cared very little about, namely Linkin Park.

The group started as one of those calculated major label projects, melding hip-hop and hard rock into a hybrid mix that primarily shouted at parents for telling teens what to do. It could be kind of annoying.

Enter producer Rick Rubin, who a few years ago encouraged the group to try exploring deeper territory. Lo and behold, that experiment has yielded one of the most cohesive concept albums in recent years, capturing the modern zeitgeist in a glass jar and holding it up for inspection. It goes to show that while many of us in the indie world may decry the plastic creations of the music industry, we should be careful not to insinuate that those people within it do not have talent. Here, at least, such a claim would be completely wrong. The trouble with the majors is not always lack of talent, but the placing of restrictions on inspirational freedom.

The attached track comes near the end of the album, and offers hope to the hopeless even in the midst of impending apocalypse. Its call to discard old failures (Jacob Marley’s chain, if you will) and find peace in what time remains is a powerful one, and may be the only solace many of us can find.

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  1. I thought you were nuts when you recommended this album, but it is indeed splendid.

  2. I thought I might be going senile, had to get outside confirmation that my ears weren’t fooling me.

  3. […] on England during the Industrial Revolution gives it a certain amount of zeitgeist in this time of globalization and widening gaps between classes. And while finding her inspiration primarily from the past, she is forward-thinking enough to be a […]

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