What Happened to Limp Bizkit?
Limp Bizkit had it, that undefinable something coupled with the right place at the right time that translates into instant mega-stardom. They literally blew up rock/rap in the late 1990s and were all over the airwaves and MTV and their success spawned a countless number of imitators.
With Fred Durst on vocals, Wes Borland on guitar, Sam Rivers on bass, John Otto on drums and DJ Lethal adding the hip-hop touch on the turntables, the band attempted to take over the world. And they succeeded for a while.
After several successful albums and singles and sold out world tours and festivals, Limp Bizkit dropped off the music radar.
So... Where did they go?
A Little History
In the late 1990s and early 2000s, there weren't many bands bigger than Limp Bizkit. With the albums Three Dollar Bill Yall, Significant Other and Chocolate Starfish and the Hotdog Flavored Water, the band flew up the charts, and released hit singles like Faith, Nookie, Break Stuff and Rollin'.
Limp Bizkit were everywhere, due in part to Durst's apparent belief that even bad press is still press. Indeed, Durst seemed to take great pleasure in the revolting name of the band, some of their albums and some of their singles. (Google them, it's not fit to print here.) Limp Bizkit also managed to get themselves into a few 'beefs' with other acts, most notably Eminem. Many industry experts mused that these feuds were solely designed for publicity.
Two distinct things happened that caused the 'fall' of Limp Bizkit. The first was that the whole rock/rap novelty wore itself out almost as quickly as it began.
The second catalyst was a bigger death blow than the first.
In 2001, Borland, considered by some to be the creative genius of the band, left the group. Reportedly, Borland was in it just for the music, and felt that Limp Bizkit, under Durst's guidance, was consistently selling out. Though, in a public statement, Durst said that he wished Borland well after his departure, he still managed to start a MySpace war with Borland when he began working with his new project, a band called Black Light Burns.
Without Borland, and with Durst now completely in control of the band's focus, their musical direction shifted. Their next album, 2003's Results May Vary, was given largely unfavorable reviews, and the standout single from that record, a cover of The Who's Behind Blue Eyes caught the band a lot of flak. Many classic rock fans believed that Limp Bizkit had 'mutilated' a song that shouldn't have been covered to begin with. More than one critic stated that this album's sole focus was Fred Durst, and that's exactly the way he wanted it.
The backlash was bad. Even in 2004, after Borland's return, fans had simply had enough of Limp Bizkit and Durst's attention-seeking antics. During a concert on the 2005 Summer Sanitarium Tour featuring acts like Metallica, Korn and Kid Rock, fans started chanting 'F*ck Fred Durst' and throwing trash on the stage during their performance.
Though Durst is a true showman on stage, rock fans felt that he was trying to overshadow his band and become the main focus. He wanted attention, and would do anything he could to get it, even at the expense of his band.
After the fairly successful release of the album The Unquestionable Truth (Part 1) in 2005 which put them more in the alt-rock category that rap/rock, Limp Bizkit went on hiatus.
So... Where Are They Now?
Since the official Limp Bizkit hiatus in 2005, it's members have been busy.
Fred Durst has a burgeoning film career and had a well-received role in the movie Population 436. He was also involved in the business end of the music business as an A&R rep for the band's label, Interscope. Wes Borland continued with Black Light Burns, recording and touring with the band and made some high profile remixes of metal songs. Sam Rivers became a producer for bands from Limp Bizkit's hometown of Jacksonville, Florida. John Otto was actually giving drum lessons and working on his own rap career.
In 2011, Limp Bizkit reunited and released the album Gold Cobra, their first record together since 2004. The reviews for the album were mixed. Critics said that the music was good, but Durst's lyrics and vocal style were not. The albums style was considered a throwback to the early days of nu metal and rock/rap and Limp Bizkit's earlier records, which was considered a success by some. Others feel that the rock/rap train has long since left the station and the style of music is no longer relevant. Gold Cobra peaked on the Billboard 200 Album chart at number sixteen. It only sold 63,000 copies in the first six months after it's release.
In December of 2011, Limp Bizkit was dropped/released from their contract with Interscope. Though Durst said in an interview that 'finally we have been able to get off our label and become independent,' the band turned right around and signed a contract with Cash Money Records, the hip-hop home of Lil Wayne, Drake and Nicki Minaj, among other people.
In July of 2013, Limp Bizkit released the video for their new single, Ready to Go. The song and video feature Lil Wayne and the critics are divided. The video features not only scantily clad women, but also Fred Durst on the toilet. It's hard to tell at this point if the band will again find fame an fortune.
Limp Bizkit Ready to Go Official Music Video (Explicit Lyrics)
© 2012 Georgianna Lowery