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Linkin Park are back with their latest album The Hunting Party. Linkin Park have been one of the most successful and productive rock bands of the 21st century, but that's not stopping them from mixing things up on their sixth album. After spending the last couple of discs leaning more melodic, the band is thoroughly embracing a guitar-driven hard rock sound with 'The Hunting Party.' If you just listen to the opening you can firmly say that the scream is back!
The Hunting Party is a lot heavier than their previous album Living Things, and will appeal to the hard core fanbase that prefers their older albums. This return to a heavier sound is best heard in 'Rebellion' and 'Guilty All The Same' which was the album's first released single, which features Rakim who tries to deliver over a song that offers poor support for him.
The band has described The Hunting Party as a prequel to Hybrid Theory, their huge 2000 debut. While admittedly not my type of music, the aggressive sound fits with the defensive lyrics. Mike Shinoda apparently ditched early demos that would have sent Linkin Park further into electronic territory, and while personally I think this would have improved the album, his band mates seemed thrilled by the decision.
Shinoda's desire to make a record with a punk rock feel and Bennington's more delicate electropop parts don't always go well together, and this is heard in "War", however Rob Bourdon's brilliant drumming means there is always plenty of energy in the tracks. Likewise, the track "All for Nothing" is a forgettable track talking about brotherhood and solidarity.
It's not their best album, and it won't land them on any popular lists, but it will sell to their loyal fans who buy every album.