The view from the elaborate stage must be a good one through the eyes of Mike Shinoda and Chester Bennington. They had thousands of fans staring back at them at the Hp Pavilion in San Jose. They’re currently on a world tour deemed “A Thousand Suns.” To say Linkin Park puts on a show is an understatement. This isn’t just a show it’s an event. For years this band has garnered buzz around their tour dates. It was at a different level this time around, though. They haven’t been in Northern California for awhile and the fans were happy to have them back.
To say Bennington has enthusiasm is like saying Charlie Sheen is “winning.” The charismatic front man was all over the place, playing to the fans pressed up against the massive barricades and using the risers on the left and right of the stage frequently. Shinoda, for the most part, was home directly behind his mic stand. When he lost his guitar and gained a little freedom, the both of them gave equal amounts of face time to both sides of the cavernous arena. But, really it was hard to keep an eye on any one member of the band. The show bombards you with smoke, lights, and Linkin Park’s intense sound.
It’s easy to forget the amount of time Linkin Park has been popular. They’ve always been around, it seems. An A-list name in an industry that acts like a revolving door. Most bands are in and out within a few years. These five have spanned a decade and there’s no stopping in sight. Especially with the diverse audience.
Of course there were kids. They could be found diving head first over the barricades into the waiting arms of the bulky security detail. But there were also fathers and sons, young kids wearing too big Linkin Park t-shirts and a few moms scattered throughout the thousands. Looking around the venue, the idea of good music appealing to just about everybody, rang true.
Yes, Bennington screams. Some of their music is loud. Most of the band members have the look of teenagers that skate on the weekends and have a bad attitude. But these guys are good musicians, smart business men, and celebrities that actually make a difference.
Their video intro showcased just that. The documentary style short piece that ran on the massive screens was footage form the first Linkin Park Underground Summit. The purpose of this was for fans and the band to join together and do some good. Activities included redecorating a hostel for the homeless and a tree planting event. The band members are obviously proud of their contribution and it looks like the LPU wont be a one time event.
The night went by quickly. Walking away from the venue there’s an overwhelming feeling that this wasn’t just a concert. It was a community event. Linking Park knows how to couple good music with the classic trimmings of a rock show but also convey a message.