Released: June 13, 2014
The Hunting Party comes after three albums that seemed to venture off into new places from a band that started out primarily with a hard rock sound. While I wasn’t sure about the direction the band was headed with the previous two albums, The Hunting Party assures me that Linkin Park is still the same band at the core. Those albums seem like artistic trials which helped mesh this band into a whole new monster and this album is the result! The Hunting Party has the aggression of the first two albums and the fines of the bands recent albums.
The album starts strong and aggressive with the lead track “Keys to the Kingdom” which immediately shows Chester Bennington raging like the old days and Mike Shinoda using melody as well as some of his rap skills making for what sounds and feels like a modern day track that could have been on Hybrid Theory. This song is followed by the thrash-like track “All or Nothing” which again maintains a good balance of Chester’s melodic and aggressive vocals with Shinoda’s skills. The lead single, “Guilty All the Same” keeps the thrash sound going and demonstrates Chester’s ability to blend his melodies with aggression making for yet another great track.
For the most part, this album maintains a good balance of aggression, melody, and flowing lyrics. I would say this is the bands best album since their first two. As I said before, they seemed to branch of with some experimental albums and this is the result of that coming back around and drawing off of the bands original influences. This album has brought life back to this band and recharged the heart giving it a strong beat. It will be interesting to see if they continue with this return of the more aggressive sound on future albums.
Grade: 9.0 (A-)