With the one year anniversary of Chester Bennington’s tragic death approaching on July 20th, bands are starting to pay tribute. Watch The Veer Union play Linkin Park’s ‘Numb’ as an acoustic cover from their upcoming Decade 2: Rock and Acoustic album.Continue reading
This Is Harcore Festival has announced its partial 2018 lineup so far. The long-running beacon of hardcore and metal takes place at the Electric Factory in Philadelphia, PA from July 27th-29th and has announced One King Down, Ten Yard Fight, E.Town Concrete, Eighteen Visions, Sick Of It All to the bill. Other notables All Out War, Merauder, District 9, Knocked Loose, Twitching Tongues, Wisdom In Chains, Jesus Piece, Sworn Enemy, Queensway, Lionheart, and many more. Tickets go on sale on April 2nd and the full lineup so far and ticket link can be found below. Continue reading
I’ve never been a fan of the phrase “guilty pleasure”. I think you either like something or you don’t, especially when it comes to music. Notwithstanding, admitting that you quite like Linkin Park is most definitely a time when the phrase can come in quite handy.
Since their debut album, the much purchased and much vaunted Hybrid Theory (Warner Bros.) graced us with its presence, Linkin Park have been a band for whom it has been very easy to dislike. Dependent on your point of view they have been described as “sell outs” “not metal” and, simply, “terrible”.
I’m not sure about whether The Hunting Party (Warner) is a return to rock as much as it is a return to Hybrid Theory– namely a bunch of highly efficient, energized songs that trade on all the leitmotifs that made this band famous and popular in the first place. And, you know what, I happen to think it’s alright, actually.
‘Keys to the Kingdom’ starts off in a fairly aggressive manner, the band seemingly re-energised and up for something akin to a fight. It’s as if they have reconciled themselves to the fact that they are never going to win over everyone and have settled for sounding, well, like Linkin Park.
If you don’t like Linkin Park, you’re unlikely to be swayed by the dozen tracks on offer here but, even if you are amongst the naysayers, you won’t fail to recognise that this is something approaching a return to the form that created the megastars in the first place. Of course, the entire record is filled with all the silly nonsense that you’ve come to expect from Messrs Bennington and co. Once again, the late 30-something multi-millionaires cast themselves in the role of eternal teenage outsiders railing against impending apocalypses, corrupt politicians and looking for the new horizons of better days etc.
Despite no cliché being actively overlooked, I still find myself warming to what’s on offer here. The debut single, the punchy and effervescent ‘Guilty All The Same’, with rap artist Rakim, has plenty of gusto and drive; second single, the more reflective ‘Until It’s Gone’ is, in the nicest possible way, ‘Numb’ part 2 which, to my mind, is no bad thing. Former System of a Down-er Darion Malakian turns in a really smart turn on one the album’s stronger cuts, the immigration tale of Rebellion; Page Hamilton and Tom Morello pop their heads and respective instruments in as well, which, as you all know, are also Very. Good. Things. Indeed.
I understand that I win no cool points on this one but I’m far too old to actually care about cool points. The Hunting Party is a highly polished and effective record. It is not a masterpiece, but neither is it a car crash. As an exercise in efficient, modern heavy metal, it’s pretty good. Yes, there, I said it. New Linkin Park album: pretty, pretty good.