Linkin Park
The Hunting Party


3.5
great

Review

by Nick Mongiardo CONTRIBUTOR (93 Reviews)
June 15th, 2014 | 40 replies


Release Date: 06/17/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A welcome change in direction that the band so desperately needed.

Over the course of browsing this site, every once in a while there would be someone claiming Linkin Park to be the “worst band ever.” Admittedly, they can be quite bad, but there is no way in hell that the band deserves this outlandishly hyperbolic title. The band simply made nu metal, a genre that can be quite jarring to some, quite accessible and dare I say it, fun to listen to. Sure, they made an even more jarring shift by changing to a sudden electronic sound, but now Linkin Park have decided to take matters into their own hands and produce their own album. This time, they take their sound back to their roots, but not back to a nu metal sound. The sound has been tweaked quite a bit and it results in a surprisingly consistent rock album with characteristics of raw punk rock. Rest assured, it’s quite likely that any long time Linkin Park fan will love The Hunting Party simply due to the fact that they have gone heavy again.

It may be true how they have gone heavy again, but The Hunting Party is certainly not a rehash of Hybrid Theory by any means. Instead of placing a great emphasis on creating a mainstream appeal with infectiously catchy choruses, the latest outing in Linkin Park’s discography places more of an emphasis on the band’s energy. It’s safe to say that their guitar work is more apparent this time around and Rob Bourdon really gets a chance to consistently shine on this record like he never has before. Album opener, “Keys to the Kingdom,” best shows the band’s newfound energy the best with punchy guitar work, Chester’s typically great screams and Rob’s exceptional punk rock rhythms. The consistency easily carries over into “All or Nothing, but this time it showcases some of the band’s most engaging guitar work to date and the songs is aided by a great performance by Page Hamilton in the chorus.

The band’s instrumentation has definitely improved, but their songwriting has also shown plenty of improvement too. Even though “Guilty All the Same” showcases a great yet extremely forced rap verse from the legendary Rakim, the song as a whole delivers in intensity and features the absolute best guitar work to date from the band in the last twenty seconds. Much like “Guilty All the Same,” the longer tracks of the album such as “Mark the Graves” and “A Line in the Sand” displays how far the band has come in terms of song writing quality. “A Line in the Sand” serves as the epic closer with engaging vocal chemistry between Chester and Mike as well as swell instrumentation. Meanwhile, “Mark the Graves” shows Chester belting out his best pipes he has to offer on The Hunting Party. Well these two tracks prove to have the most emotional depth of the album, “War” and “Rebellion” a typically angry Linkin Park and it truly satisfies despite nearly abysmal lyrics.

In fact, the lyrics quickly become a gigantic problem of this record from the start. Mike has said before that there are different things that make a man in his late thirties angry, but it’s hilariously strange how the delivery of this anger happens to be no different or any more complex than on Hybrid Theory. Let’s face it: lyrics have never been the band’s strength, but sadly the listener will see no signs of improvement here. Take “Until it’s Gone” for example: the epic 30 Seconds to Mars style music is admirable and something different for the band, but Chester’s lyrics are nothing more than hilarious and almost acts as a parody of the band’s lyrics as a whole. Thankfully, most of the intense music saves The Hunting Party from being a disaster that it easily could have been.

Despite lyrics that are undeniably horrible, The Hunting Party proves to be some of Linkin Park’s best work to date. Though they have a long way to go before they become masterful musicians, their overall musicianship and chemistry as a band without a doubt improved with this new change in direction. They successfully crafted a fun, engaging and catchy listen by going back to their roots without creating another Hybrid Theory or Meteora. This is certainly a big step in the right direction for Linkin Park and one could hope that they combine their new style with the ambition of A Thousand Suns for their next record.



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user ratings (688)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
1 of

Comments:Add a Comment 
Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


11795 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Album is much better than I expected. All or nothing rules.

Digging: Rishloo - Living as Ghosts with Buildings as Teeth

BMDrummer
June 15th 2014


9959 Comments


People are really hyping this up, despite the band's reputation. Maybe I should check this out.

Green Baron
June 15th 2014


20325 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

"Despite, lyrics that are undeniably horrible,"

unneccessary comma

Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


11795 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Might as well, considering this will be the treading album for quite a while haha. And it isn't even
out yet :D

Oh thanks Green!

hogan900
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


1730 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Great review as always Nick. Completely agree with you for most of your points as well. And yes, the lyrics are just awful, but they end up being quite entertaining to me.

Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


11795 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks man! And yea they're so lol but that's kinda the charm of them.

VheissuCrisis
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


1051 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Luckily I've never paid attention to their lyrics. Glad you're on board with this album Mongi.

Digging: The Hotelier - Home, Like NoPlace Is There

erizen826
June 15th 2014


609 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I need to listen to this soon.

emester
June 15th 2014


4376 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Album is nauseating. Its an improvement from their previous stuff but i use the term improvement VERY lightly

Digging: Skelator - King of Fear

Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


11795 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

The ratings chart is all over the place haha

Pizzahut
June 15th 2014


113 Comments


41 people rated this a classic. Oh Sputnik.

emester
June 15th 2014


4376 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Wow for once i actually agree with pizzahut. What the fuck is this world coming to

Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


11795 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

OH YOU DONT KNOW WHAT YOUVE GOT
UNTIL ITS GOOOOOONE.

Classic.

NocteDominum
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


7127 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Might as well, considering this will be the treading album for quite a while haha. And it isn't even
out yet


On shelves in Aust.

any long time Linkin Park fan will love The Hunting Party simply due to the fact that they have gone heavy again.


Trvth, but heavy doesn't mean great.

Great write up man, I can't help but feel this is the definition of average.


Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


11795 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks man! It actually releases in two days in the US, didn't know it was out in other places. To each his own though, I can easily see people finding it average, but it's a really fun listen to me.

Green Baron
June 15th 2014


20325 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

This is already out overseas?

NocteDominum
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


7127 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

It actually releases in two days in the US,


Yeah I've actually noticed with the mainstream metal releases (Trivium, DevilDriver etc) that Aust/NZ will actually get the release a working week (5 days usually) before the US.

Sabrutin
June 15th 2014


1052 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

"In fact, the lyrics quickly become a gigantic problem of this record from the start"

trvth

Honestly after hearing this a lot I can't give it more than 3. :-(

LPFTW
June 15th 2014


190 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Album desperately needs a higher rating average IMO

Digging: Joy Division - Closer

NocteDominum
Contributing Reviewer
June 15th 2014


7127 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Man you must live under a bridge or something.



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