Linkin Park

Brixton Academy, London

With each successive press release, the sales figures for Linkin Park's debut album, Hybrid Theory, spiral upwards remorselessly - 13m, 14m, now apparently as many as 17m copies sold worldwide. No wonder the band could afford to spend 18 months making the followup, Meteora.

The album is due in a couple of weeks, but such is the sextet's critical importance to Warner that the company is guarding the new disc as if it were radioactive. Advance copies are banned, and any employee caught leaking material to the media will presumably be sent to the electric chair.

But how thoughtful of the Linkin boys to come over and preview some of the new material. They will doubtless be back for some mega-gigs later in the year, with or without their cacophonous pals Metallica and Limp Bizkit (from the planned Summer Sanitarium Tour), but this was a chance to be subjected to their sensory onslaught in a relatively small space.

The band deliver their bludgeoning metal barrage with digitally enhanced expertise, Brad Delson's guitar roaring out of the mix like a multi-vehicle pile-up over booming drums and bass notes that make the floor wobble.

Meanwhile vocalists Mike Shinoda and Chester Bennington prowl the front of the stage, twisting and counterpointing vocal lines like method actors. They could probably make every syllable crystal-clear with the flick of a fader, but amid the carefully wrought chaos you might catch a line or a piece of a chorus before the voices are sucked back into the maelstrom.

Funnily enough, the bits about "England! You're the fucking best fucking fans in the fucking world" were pin-sharp. Detailed analysis of the new songs will have to wait until the finished product is finally unleashed, but every song was greeted with varying degrees of delirium as the audiences chose to ignore the Academy's preposterous "moshing is dangerous" signs.

There was an airing for the bawling stomp of Faint and the new single, Somewhere I Belong, but among the most immediately impressive new songs was Easier To Run, a slow metal surge reeking with doomy atmosphere.

The set was glued together with familiar Linkin highlights, like Points of Authority and a long and anthemic A Place For My Head. The band's mix of bulldozer riffs and chantalong raps barely registers on the subtlety detector, but it is ferociously effective.

· At Manchester Apollo (0161-242 2560) tonight.


Adam Sweeting

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Linkin Park, Astoria, London

Astoria, London

Lee Boynton

04, May, 2007 @11:12 PM

Linkin Park, SECC, Glasgow

SECC, Glasgow

James Smart

22, Nov, 2003 @1:57 AM

Article image
CD: Linkin Park: Meteora

(Warner Bros)

Dorian Lynskey

28, Mar, 2003 @2:16 AM

Pop CD: Linkin Park, Reanimation

(Warner Bros)

Caroline Sullivan

26, Jul, 2002 @1:40 PM

Article image
Linkin Park – review
The reinvented Linkin Park raise eyebrows with pianos, ballads and the odd blissed-out haze at this terrific stadium show, writes Dave Simpson

Dave Simpson

09, Nov, 2010 @9:29 PM

Article image
CD: Linkin Park, Minutes to Midnight
(Warner Bros)

Caroline Sullivan

11, May, 2007 @10:55 PM

Linkin Park: Living Things – review
Linkin Park’s continued experimentation with subtle electronica impresses Phil Mongredien

Phil Mongredien

23, Jun, 2012 @11:05 PM

Linkin Park: Living Things – review
Linkin Park’s last album was a big departure, stylistically, but the surprise has worn off a bit now, writes Dave Simpson

Dave Simpson

21, Jun, 2012 @9:45 PM

Article image
Linkin Park help score Transformers 2
The nu-metallers appear to be composers in disguise after collaborating with Hans Zimmer on the new Transformers movie soundtrack

Sean Michaels

28, Apr, 2009 @11:32 AM

Article image
CD: Jay-Z/Linkin Park, Collision Course

1 star (WEA)

Dorian Lynskey

26, Nov, 2004 @2:30 AM