REVIEW: Shinoda Makes Powerful Statement in New EP

By Sara Birse

It’s raw, it’s powerful, and it is incredibly honest. In his latest EP, “Post Traumatic,” Linkin Park co-founder Mike Shinoda gives listeners a glimpse into the aftermath of the death of Chester Bennington, lead singer of Linkin Park. For over a decade, the band’s unique blend of rap, rock, and alternative captivated the attention of listeners worldwide. The combination of Bennington’s signature scream and Shinoda’s rap was the pinnacle of the 2000’s rock scene.

Shinoda’s solo EP gives a glimpse into the aftermath following Bennington’s death. While many questioned the future of Linkin Park, Shinoda’s latest work reaffirms the fact that neither the band nor Shinoda’s solo career is ending anytime soon. Rather, this is just the beginning.

“Place to Start,” the first track of the EP, shows that after all he has been through Shinoda is determined to continue dominating the music scene. The soothing melody in contrast to the emotional and honest lyrics conveys a powerful message: Shinoda’s grief may be crippling at times, however, he has no intention to let it ruin his own music career as well as Linkin Park’s.

The second track, “Over Again,” was written shortly after a Hollywood Bowl benefit show hosted by Linkin Park in honor of Bennington. Shinoda writes with brutal honestly and describes the strength it took to perform for the first time without his friend with bone-chilling conviction.

As Shinoda mentioned on “On this project, I’m trying to work in the moment… I wanted to put this out as soon as possible because I’m living it, and a lot of other people are living it, too,” said Shinoda on Twitter.

The electro-hip-hop finale, “Watching as I Fall,” keeps listeners engaged until the final note and serves as the ultimate anthem to overcoming adversity. From start to end, Shinoda tells those who doubt him and his future as a musician to go screw themselves in the most poetic, powerful way possible. In the midst of coping with tragedy, grief and society’s anticipation for the band’s collapse, “Watching as I Fall” shows that those who expect failure from Shinoda could not be further from the truth.

“Post Traumatic” is only the first of many works we hope to see from Shinoda in the future. According to Alternative Press, Shinoda is currently working on a solo album due to be released on Friday, June 15.

Those interested can stream Shinoda’s EP through Spotify or purchase it on iTunes.