Linkin Park
The Hunting Party


4.0
excellent

Review

by AaronBatt USER (50 Reviews)
June 18th, 2014 | 21 replies


Release Date: 06/17/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Adapt or die...

This is the next stage in Linkin Park's evolution.

The band who virtually took nu-metal to the mainstream with Hybrid Theory and then evolved into an alternative rock band (Minutes to Midnight) on their way to making electronic music (A Thousand Suns & Living Things) had grown stagnant in the eyes of fans, and apparently in the eyes of the band themselves. Mike Shinoda, when discussing The Hunting Party at length has said that Linkin Park wanted to "weed out the emo" in their music, that "our label told us this record will be a hard sell at radio, and that "rock music has gone soft and we want to bring it back". And boy, does The Hunting Party ever live up to those quotes.

The first two tracks blow Living Things out of the water: "Keys To The Kingdom" is a anthemic heavy-as-*** track that begins with a heavily distorted screamed vocal from Chester Bennington before Rob Bourdon and Brad Delson take it the *** over. "All For Nothing" is insanely groovy, as Mike Shinoda wages a polemic during the verses before Helmet frontman Page Hamilton sings the explosive chorus. With those two tracks alone, it is obvious that Linkin Park got sick of being indolent in terms of songwriting. Bourdon and Delson are the stars on The Hunting Party, as they are let out of their cages and allowed to roam. Most tracks feature at least one guitar solo, if not more, and Delson provides some really solid riffing throughout the album. Bourdon plays drums like a madman, so much so that he ***ed up his back during the recording sessions because he was playing so hard. On faster tracks like "Guilty All The Same", he goes nuts. "War" is probably his best performance on the album, as it is the fastest song here, and he keeps up ably.

"A Line In The Sand" recycles "Victimized" from Living Things and also borrows from "Guilty All The Same" to devastating effect. It's the perfect album closer, because it's basically a massive call to arms. "Mark The Graves" features a neat off-kilter groove that will worm it's way around your ears for a while.

Chester Bennington and Mike Shinoda go in for the kill vocally on The Hunting Party. Shinoda takes lead vocally on several tracks with his rapping, and dude sounds pissed off as hell when he's spitting rhymes here. "Wastelands" is a prime example, as he lets loose over a hip-hop beat from Bourdon. He also contributes singing to a couple tracks, including the extremely System of a Down-esque track "Rebellion" which features System's Daron Malakian on guitar. Chester Bennington's vocals are fine, for anyone who's complaining. His screams, when he unleashes them, are more visceral and raw than he has sounded in years. His cleans are decent, but Shinoda is the main one to focus on here.

The Hunting Party is not perfect, by any means. "Drawbar" absolutely wastes the talents of one Tom Morello, "Guilty All The Same" is about a minute too long, and the mix on that particular track almost buries Rakim's vicious guest verse. The production is gloriously raw, but one could expect that from a self-produced effort. It's good that the band shed the deadweight known as Rick Rubin though. The softer tracks "Until It's Gone" and "Final Masquerade" are good songs, but they sound a bit out of place on The Hunting Party. All of these are just very minor gripes, though.

There is an overall feeling on The Hunting Party of anger and viciousness. Indeed, Linkin Park had stated that they wanted to make a "90s rock record" and they have done that. The Hunting Party is the most cathartic and passion-filled record Linkin Park has ever written. They definitely needed a change after the electronic-heavy spirit of their last two efforts: A Thousand Suns was a beautiful record, but it's not easy to get into it for casual fans. Living Things tried to balance their present with past, but the songwriting suffered slightly. The Hunting Party changes that, while going for the throat in the process. I could go on all day about how great this album is, but I'll leave you with a poem that the band included on the back of the CD booklet:

We Are Not Satisfied.
We Are Hungry.
Hungry For The Visceral.
Cathartic.
Inspired.
Defiant.
We Are Not Heroes Or Anti-Heroes.
We Carry Only The Flag That Is Our Own.
Now Is Not The Time To Look Back To See If Anyone Is Following.
Now Is The Time To Charge Forward Into The Unknown.

THE HUNTING PARTY...



Recent reviews by this author
Circa Zero Circus HeroZac Brown Band The Grohl Sessions, Vol. I
Metallica St. AngerGary Clark Jr. Blak and Blu
Jack White LazarettoFuel Puppet Strings
user ratings (621)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
1 of

Comments:Add a Comment 
BeneaththeDarkOcean
June 18th 2014


438 Comments


Even though this didn't really need another review, this is still well-written, have a pos

Although I will say ending the review with the poem in the booklet seems a little...superfluous, maybe? Kind of like you're part of the marketing department behind this album, which is a definite no no in music criticism. Could just be me, tho. Everything else is good (although you don't have to edit yourself when it comes to cursing ;) )

DrGonzo1937
June 18th 2014


5663 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

God damn, 3 pages of reviews for this already.

Nice review though.

OurDailyFred
June 18th 2014


51 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I'm realy impressed. Their last two albums have been horrible but this might be just as good as Hybrid Theory.

Sabrutin
June 18th 2014


875 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

^ It's not.

Digging: Aspid - Extravasation

OurDailyFred
June 18th 2014


51 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I think it is.

Sabrutin
June 18th 2014


875 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Fine, but in my opinion The Hunting Party is a false big album. It seems big before listening, but
then it left me with a lot of emptiness. HT and Meteora left me pleased instead.

OurDailyFred
June 18th 2014


51 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This was like eating a juicy steak with a loaded baked potato and having a piece of cheesecake for dessert. Fulfilling and delicious.

renxo
June 18th 2014


69 Comments


lol god

fromtheinside
June 18th 2014


18203 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

ohmygod i can't believe this shit is still trending, let alone number fucking one

Digging: Tragedy - Vengeance

Green Baron
June 18th 2014


20000 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

i thought YOU of all people would like this

fromtheinside
June 18th 2014


18203 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

i'm sorry bb

i liked the first song a little if it means anything to you :-)

fallenbird
June 18th 2014


3833 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

you're name is literally a Linkin Park reference how can you not like this?

Digging: Sugary Sweet Machines - Controlled Breathing

Green Baron
June 18th 2014


20000 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

pre-Minutes to Midnight reference

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
June 18th 2014


15981 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

This album annoys me beyond belief. I acknowledge that they've made some changes, but I just don't think they're necessarily for the better. To me they just keep trending downwards. Hybrid > Meteora > MtM > Suns > whatever the last one was called > this

Digging: Maybeshewill - Fair Youth

fromtheinside
June 18th 2014


18203 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

god how bad was MTM tho.

remember when everyone was making sure they didn't just pop in the new U2

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
June 18th 2014


15981 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Haha yeah I was one of them. I bought it the day
it came out. Them virtually covering U2 is still
better than this.

Green Baron
June 18th 2014


20000 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

What don't you like about this album, Sowing? It's got ten thousand times more energy that the soulsucking U2 bastard ripoff will ever have.

Arcade
Contributing Reviewer
June 18th 2014


2483 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

No way is Living Things better than this

Digging: Aphex Twin - Syro

DrGonzo1937
June 19th 2014


5663 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

It is

Arcade
Contributing Reviewer
June 19th 2014


2483 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Living Things is just about one of the worst albums I've ever heard



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy