LINKIN PARK – THE HUNTING PARTY
Huge distorted screams from Chester Bennington start out what is to become Linkin Park’s best album to date, The Hunting Party. They promised us a heavy album and boy did they deliver. Linkin Park have been exploring other sides of their musical tastes with the last couple of albums. “A Thousand Suns” was very electronic oriented and “Living Things” had a mix of electronic and rock elements, both great albums but not the Linkin Park fans fell in love with. Kicking off the album is “Keys To The Kingdom” and from the get go you know you are in for a heavy album. After the distorted screaming comes a killer metal style riff from guitarist Rob Delson. I really like the verses Mike has put down on this track. Things slow down a bit when his vocals come in and it fits so well with everything else they are doing here. Next up is “All For Nothing” which features Helmet’s Page Hamilton. This is a Mike Shinoda song through and through with a huge hip hop beat and very catchy chorus. Mike destroys the track, laying down some killer verses that could make a lot of hip hop artists jealous. Brad lays down a very clean solo here which adds a lot to this track. Next is the lead single titled “Guilty All The Same”. This song spent a few weeks at number 1 on the active rock chart and for good reason too, this is easily the band’s best single in years. Killer riffs and Chester’s melodic vocals just cannot be beat. Also, with a verse from hip hop legend Rakim, this track is such a great first taste of the album for those who haven’t heard it yet. The album’s heaviest and most upbeat song is “War” and nothing can prepare you for this one. I was amazed when I heard this coming out of my speakers. This is very much a punk rock song, something I have never heard from Linkin Park. It’s a short track but it works so perfectly in the middle of the album. “Wastelands” sounds like something that could have been on their last album and has a little bit of everything with Mike Rapping, Chester belting out the chorus and some heavy guitar riffs, this is Linkin Park at their finest. The first ballad on the album, “Until Its Gone”, is hands down one of the best ballads the band has ever written. They aren’t reinventing the wheel by any means but this is a great ballad with plenty of heart and fun that will make fans happy. Next is “Rebellion” which features System Of a Down axeman Daron Malakian. This is easily one of my favorite tracks on the album. Something about Mike’s vocals hear evoke emotion. He is a great rapper, but when he sings it works so great within the band’s songs. This is a heavier track and I love the drums here! ”Final Masquerade” is my absolute favorite track from this record. A very 80’s style ballad with Chester at the top of his game vocally. This song will be HUGE for the band if they release it as a single and the chorus will be sung by thousands at concerts when this is played live. Last is the albums closing track, “A Line In The Sand”. I have read other reviews and people’s comments stating that this is basically everything the band has ever done all rolled up and shoved into one track and that is SO true. This track takes everything the band has learned and done over the last few albums and stuffed into one 6 and a half minute track. I was not expecting to get this as the album’s closer, but it’s very daring and could not have been done any better.
Honestly, I was not expecting to like this album as much as I do. I was not overly impressed with “Guilty All The Same” when I first heard it but it definitely grew on me. If you are looking for a heavy, in your face rock and roll record then look no further. This is Linkin Park at their finest! Do yourself a favor and pick up this album when it drops on June 17th and go see them out on the Carnivors Tour with 30 Seconds To Mars and AFI! 5/5 by David Rader
CHECK OUT THIS COOL VIDEO ABOUT “THE HUNTING PARTY” PHOTO SHOOT!