The kings of alterna-electro-rap-rock are back on the road in America. Of course it’s a hell of a lot easier to be the kings when you carve the immense glacial canyon of a soundscape behind you that Linkin Park have. On their newest release, A Thousand Suns, the Mike Shinoda and Chester Bennington-led group seems to be connected to a Pandora-like world radio, drawing inspiration from every audio source imaginable. Linkin Park are now in a field all their own.
According to Shinoda, their stop on the 29th in Kansas City will most likely be their only show in the area on this 24-date trek promoting A Thousand Suns. It will also be unlike any other Linkin Park show. “We wanted a way for the look of the show to kind of ebb and flow with whatever we do with the music,” Shinoda says. “So, from night to night, the music will be different and the visuals will be different as well. No two shows will be the same.”
On top of intensely good opening acts in the shape of Australian/British group Pendulum, and England’s Does it Offend You, Yeah?, the headliners have also added another incentive to their tour: a free download of the show you attend. The process, as Shinoda describes it, makes the ticket more than worth its cost. “It's not what they call a "line mix" or a "board mix," which is the cheapest and easiest way to do it,” he says. “Most people do it that way. We just think that sounds terrible and it's kind of sloppy, so what happens in our show is the guy that mixes the show live for you records the show as it's going on, and then he takes that backstage and we do a special mix for your iPod and your car, and something that will sound good on your stereo.”
For longtime fans, Shinoda has this message: “We are going to be playing songs from our entire catalog. This isn't just A Thousand Suns show; you'll be hearing stuff from every album.”
As for the future of the band’s festival-like tour, Projekt Revolution, Shinoda says, “We don't have immediate plans on Projekt Revolution. That doesn't mean it went away, but we are really trying to get focused on getting in the studio as often as possible,… it's not taken the front seat, but it's definitely on our minds that we want to be trying to write as much as we can.”
If an impending break from touring, a free live album, Pendulum and Does It Offend You, Yeah?, still hasn’t convinced you to catch Linkin Park live, a portion of ticket sales will also be going towards a good cause. “We donate $1 from each ticket,” Shinoda says. “We get a lot of people donating, a lot of musicians donating time and energy in music, but we don't [just want to] raise $50 million on a televised telethon where [we are left thinking], we're raising all this money and where does it go? We want to be responsible for the money that we raise and for making sure that it's going to things that are actually going to be helping people.” So you can feel like a Good Samaritan and get your alterna-electro-rap-rock on. | Bruce Matlock
Linkin Park, Pendulum and Does It Offend You, Yeah? will be at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, MO on January 29. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster.