Review: Linkin Park – Living Things

Living Things was the fifth studio album from rap-rockers Linkin Park and would find the band doing further experimentation with their sound, and would become their fourth straight record to debut at the top of the Billboard 200. The set was co-produced by Mike Shinoda and veteran Rick Rubin, whom had previously collaborated on Minutes to Midnight and their expansive A Thousand Suns records. In a lot of ways, this album is usually the one I reach for the most when I’m looking for a quick encapsulation of everything Linkin Park did in their storied discography in a singular record. For casual fans of Linkin Park, many state that Living Things is one of their favorites, if not the favorite in their collection, and it’s easy to see why so many would gravitate to the sound they went for here. It’s very accessible, doesn’t include any filler, and delivers more often than not in a rewarding and consistent listening experience.

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Her Head’s On Fire – “Lexicon of Doubt” (Video Premiere)

Her Head's On Fire

Today is a great day to share the new music video from new rockers, Her Head’s On Fire, for their electric new single called “Lexicon of Doubt.” The band will be releasing their debut record entitled College Rock and Clove Cigarettes to make their unique stamp on the music scene. Lead vocalist Joseph Grillo had this to say about the latest single:

’Lexicon of Doubt,’ like most of my songs, is written directly to myself. They are desperate pleas to become a better person, or to finally shed the last remains of last year’s husk of skin and grow anew, open eyes, and feverishly excited like a child seeing the sunrise for the first time. Life seems to be mostly about adapting and pushing through to the next chapter. To see and overcome obstacles, to be a more improved version of yourself, or if I may be so bold to quote myself from my youth, to ‘learn to struggle.’

If you’re enjoying the new and exciting direction Her Head’s On Fire went with, you can pre-order their debut album here.

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Liner Notes (June 25th, 2022)

This week’s newsletter tries to make up for missing last week by being jam-packed with treats. We have brief first impressions of the new albums from The Midnight, The Wonder Years, The Interrupters, and Yours Truly, and we have some thoughts on other music and entertainment I’ve been enjoying the past couple of weeks. There’s also a playlist of ten songs I think are worth your time, and this week’s supporter Q&A post can be found here.

If you’d like this newsletter delivered to your inbox each week (it’s free and available to everyone), you can sign up here.

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Review: The Used – The Used

I’m not quite sure when my fondness for a band called The Used started. I seem to remember hearing about a hyped band, from an article in Alternative Press, where producer and Goldfinger founder John Feldman was gushing over this band that he helped get signed to a major label. The Used were comprised of lead singer Bert McCracken, bassist Jeph Howard, drummer Branden Steineckert and guitarist Quinn Allman, and their incredible band chemistry was able to capture early and inescapable magic on their self-titled debut. The first track that I ever heard from The Used was “A Box Full of Sharp Objects” from a Warped Tour compilation, and it became increasingly evident to me that this band demanded to be taken seriously. The lead single from their debut LP was an abrasive, wall of sound effort that captured a punk rock spirit paired with screamo vocals that many other bands would emulate later in our scene. The Used would go on to sell over a million copies in the United States and cement the band’s legacy as one of the emo/punk scene’s primary front-runners.

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Sponsor: Baby Got Back Talk Release New Single

Baby Got Backtalk

Baby Got Back Talk have released their Wiretap Records debut single, “Model Minority,” to all streaming platforms. The track comes from the band’s forthcoming EP, Existential Shred, out September 9th. Vocalist/bassist G’Ra Asim says the tune is “a wry sendup of a classic hater’s lament, namely that marginalization is currency nowadays and social outgroups are fashionable. It’s a gripe that tends to reach your ears when you’re in a rock band that foregrounds queer punx and punx of color. We took that idea and ran with it: why not have a rallying cry [akin to Keri Hilson’s “Pretty Girl Rock”] repping all us twinkling tokens?”

Tuned Up writes: “The video is an homage to “I’m Not Okay (I Promise)” by My Chemical Romance, borrowing its juxtaposition of inspiring title cards between scenes of private school life. It’s not out of the question that “Model Minority” could become an anthem of similar importance for queer folks and POC in the punk scene today.”

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Now Playing: My Raspberry Pi Weekend Project

Raspberry Pi

A few weeks ago I started working on a new weekend project. I wanted to build a mini-computer that could sit on my desk and display what I was currently listening to. A simple idea. After completing it, I figured I should write up the entire process, because if I don’t blog about it … did it really happen?

I’ve compiled everything I used in making the little device, and walked through the process below. Most of it is pretty straight forward if you’ve ever worked with a Raspberry Pi or Unix before, and I documented the tutorials I used as well as the actual code I used for the website.

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