Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda Addresses Rock Music’s Need for Risk Takers
Linkin Park member Mike Shinoda has penned an essay for Pigeons and Planes in response to writer Ernest Baker’s recent article ‘Rock Music Sucks Now and It’s Depressing.’ Instead of blindly rallying in the defense of the genre, Shinoda gives an even-handed, clear-eyed take on the struggles rock musicians face.
One of Shinoda’s most salient points lies in the factor of music being a numbers game. If an artist wants to grow as a hip hop artist or DJ, much of the software that is needed can be found on one’s laptop. From Shinoda’s vantage point, starting a rock band is a much harder journey. “Do the math,” said Shinoda. “If you want to start a rock band, you need more than proficiency and/or exceptional talent at your instruments. You also need some kind of production or recording experience, or access to it. You need chemistry. You need a group of individuals who are all aligned on their vision of what kind of music they want to make. You want to be the Yeah Yeah Yeahs? Rage Against the Machine? MGMT? Your band has to come to a general consensus about what ‘credibility’ and ‘integrity’ mean.”
Shinoda also adds that rock music needs to take more chances and find more avenues for innovation, and he believes that the genre doesn’t have the “vibrancy it could — and ought to — have.” The musician adds that rock needs a bit more meat and substance in its world, and that risk takers who are “carnivores” are needed to make that very change. “At the end of the day, it will never be about one song, one album, or one band,” said Shinoda. “A movement requires leaders who are restless, brave, and f–king disruptive. I’m in the studio right now. I’m looking for ways to do it myself.”
Linkin Park’s Facebook game ‘LP Recharge’ debuts Sept. 12, and it features the band’s new song ‘A Light That Never Comes,’ which is a collaboration with EDM artist Steve Aoki.
What do you think? Are you satisfied with the state of rock or are you waiting for that next big “carnivore” risk taker to shake things up? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.