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The Hunting Party
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The Hunting Party

16 Jun. 2014 | Format: MP3

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Format: Audio CD
Linkin Park’s debut ‘Hybrid Theory’ was released all the way back in 2000, it was a magical time where metal heads and Goths ruled the world and every young teen sported a black hoodie with their favourite band on them. The mixing of hip hop and metal was at its commercial peak thanks to Slipknot, Papa Roach and of course Linkin Park. Oh and Snake was the height of mobile phone gaming technology! 14 years later and a lot has changed and despite the talk ‘The Hunting Party’ is nothing like their debut album, which is a good thing because if that’s what I wanted I could have just listened to that and anyway the band are not the same as they were back then, for starters they are rolling in money.

The Hunting Party opens in glorious style mixing their rockier ‘Minutes to Midnight’ style with a bit of extra grit, while retaining a very dynamic feel as you would expect from Linkin Park. While there are flashes of their more experimental and atmospheric side, these moments are used more to provide contrast and flow rather than being the driving force of the album. The whole album is satisfyingly immediate, taking no real effort to listen to and providing pure unrestrained excitement from the off, and with each subsequent listen you discover more and more hooks, with songs that are simple enough to impale you but have enough brains to keep you coming back for more. There are no weak tracks and the collaborations are so well done that they don’t stick out like sore thumbs, they sound like they are a part of the album.

There is real potential for this album to be one that stands the test of time.
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This is a true return to form for Linkin Park. Great mix of rock and electronic music, with great lyrics whether Mike's rapping or Chester's blasting vocals. Though Chester does get a chance to deliver a ballad in Final Masquerade, and Mike gets to do some singing for a couple of verses of A line in the sand. Great album all the way through. My favourite songs that really stood out for me were Wastelands and A line in the sand. A line in the sand especially as I think Linkin Park managed to show all their different sides in this one song I am glad this was 6 minutes. I know I loved this album because as soon as it finished I immediately looped it. I have been waiting for Linkin Park to return to this style that made them my favourites since Hybrid Theory and Metoria. Love it!!!!
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Hybrid Theory was, and still is, one of my favourite albums of all time, I remember listening to it non-stop when at school, and even now I still put it on from time to time. Linkin Parks followup albums Reanimation and Meteora, while not the same calibre (in my opinion at least) as their debut, were still were very good and I certainly enjoyed them a lot (even if Reanimation was a completely different beast).

However, the albums following Meteora unfortunately didn't grab my interest. After listening to Minutes to Midnight, I stopped really paying any attention to LP. I appreciate that artists and bands like to evolve their music, or try new genres, and I cannot fault them for making the music that they wanted to make, but unfortunately it wasn't for me.

However, The Hunting Party is a step back towards where they started from. It is a lot heavier than what I have heard since Meteora, with a more hard rock feel to the album. Despite the fact that I may not have been a huge fan of their work since Meteora, it does appear that it has helped the bands talent to grow with more intricate riffs, which sound like they have a wider range of influences since their early days (I might even dare to go as far as some riffs having a classical influence to them). Their songs as a whole flow well and seem gel together nicely, with all the parts complimenting each other well.

So, to sum up the album - is it another Hybrid Theory? I wouldn't go that far, but it is definitely a step back in the right direction if you enjoyed their earlier albums. The best praise that I can give it is, with the convenience of mp3 downloads dominating my music purchases recently, this is the first actual physical album that I have bought in nearly two years. I like what they have done with this album and I am once again, looking forward to seeing what Linkin Park come up with next!
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One of the best ever Linkin Park albums. I was lucky enough to go on the Hunting Party Tour where they played some of the best songs from this album. I'll now rate each song out of 10 and briefly describe them.

Keys to the Kingdom - 9.5, Definitely a great start to the album and feels like the true LP experience
All For Nothing - 9.6, Briliant rock vibe and some great rap segments. Cool chorus as well
Guilty All The Same - 9.2. Up there with one of the best songs on the album, quite strong drumwork on this song and a nice shouty chorus
The Summoning - 8.0. Not much to say about this one, it's a connector for songs 3 and 5. Not the best but it's alright.
War - 9.4. Very heavy rock, pretty good if you like this sort of thing. Reminds me of Metallica!
Wastelands - 9.7. Great song, had this as my ringtone for a while. It's got an amazing chorus and some fantastic guitar/bass work. Brilliant rapping as well.
Until It's Gone - 9.3. It's a bit more mainstream-orientated than the other songs, but it's still great. Chester does a fantastic job with the vocals, the ending is quite good too.
Rebellion - 9.4. Some great lyrics followed by a really fast-tempo rhythm keep you tapping your foot frantically. Brilliant singing from all the band members involved.
Mark The Graves 9.6. Starts out as an instrumental that gives way to Chester's melodic tones. Plenty of screaming by the end!
Drawbar - 9.8. Great guitar-work from the Mr Morello. Nice instrumental piece that ties in with Tinfoil from the previous album. This song also segues into Final Masquerade very nicely.
Final Masquerade - 9.6. While this song gets a bit repetitive after the first few listens, it's a fantastic Linkin Park song. Has everything you would want, quiet segments with Chester's voice and the traditional rock style you like so much.
A Line In The sand - 9.7. Starts out really quietly and then grows and grows into a really heavy rock song. Brilliant!
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