It’s a brand new innovative solo project from Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda; an album written with the help of his Twitch live-streaming community. What could be more lockdown, right?
Released through Kenji Koboyashi Productions, Dropped Frames, Vol. 1 is an eclectic amalgamation of any and every genre you could think of, which is to be expected due to the collaborative nature of its formation. Album opener Open Door could be on any regular release, but that’s kind of where the radio-friendly stops. Super Galaxtica is a soundscape of synths that could be on any game soundtrack, Duckbot is for lack of a better word, bizarre (but yet really, really groovy!).
Cupcake Cake harks to Indian inspiration and is a complete welcome shock to the system. Mariachi gets its time in the form of El Rey Demonio (are you getting what I meant about a complete mish-mash of genres yet?). Channeling, Pt. 1 features a collaboration with Israeli drummer, composer and educator Dan Mayo, of TATRAN fame, and is a delight for the ears for anyone into incredibly complex drum rhythms.
The hilariously titled Session McSessionface is all over the place, to be honest, but it’s interesting to just hear someone clearly experimenting with the guidance of fan input. Record closer Booty Down is a short but sweet joke of a song, which came about from an initial failed attempt at another track;
“I started jokingly picking through these vocal samples called ‘Booty Up’ and ‘Booty Down’, so I made a Miami bass dance track out of it.”Mike Shinoda to NME on ‘Booty Down’
In conclusion, is this going to be the next number one album full of catchy singalongs that etch into your brain all summer long? Absolutely not. But you have to applaud the talent and ingenuity of Mike Shinoda for creating an entire album with only the guidance of his Twitch fans to stem from. It’s been a fantastic usage of his lockdown time and it’s definitely worth a listen for its varied inspirations and directions alone.