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Linkin Park - Living Things Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 9.75
Musicianship 8.5
Lyrics 9.5
Production 9.5
Creativity 8.5
Lasting Value 9
Reviewer Tilt 10
Final Verdict: 93%
Member Ratings
Vocals 6.79
Musicianship 6.3
Lyrics 6.25
Production 7.3
Creativity 6.14
Lasting Value 5.57
Reviewer Tilt 6.21
Average: 64%

Linkin Park - Living Things

Reviewed by: woohoo! (06/22/12)
Linkin Park - Living Things
Record Label: Warner Bros.
Release Date: June 20, 2012


After waiting over 4 years for a follow up to Linkin Park’s second album, 2003’s, Meteora, it is now very refreshing to see new music released so quickly from the band (this time less than two years wait). I have been a huge fan of the band ever since hearing “In the End” on the radio, and listening to my older brother’s copy of Hybrid Theory. I specifically remember waiting with my best friend anxiously for new material from LP for their follow up to Meteora. When 2007’s Minutes to Midnight Came closer to its release date, my friend and I were utterly disappointed by the first 3 songs that were made available: “Given Up”, “Bleed It Out”, and “What I’ve Done”. We were already upset with the long wait, but now we were also upset with the sideways change in style, which neither of us appreciates to this day. To us, there was no one quite like Linkin Park, (at least how they were for their first two albums) and now, not even they would be like that ever again.

People often criticize the band for Meteora being too similar to their first album, Hybrid Theory. I can certainly see where they are coming from, although I must admit, it was not a problem for my 6th grade self. What I was counting on for the third album, was to see a progression on the style they had already mastered. It may have taken 9 years, but I definitely got what I wished for back when I was in Jr. High. Living Things has almost everything I loved about their first two albums, mixed with what I loved about their last album, A Thousand Suns. Out of 15 tracks on ATS, only 9 are regular full songs (as in non “Intro/Interlude/Outro/Random Speech” tracks). Out of the 9, I only enjoy 5, but I thoroughly enjoy those 5 (“When They Come for Me”, “Robot Boy”, “Waiting for the End”, “Wretches and Kings” and “The Catalyst”). Living Things is a perfect mix of classic Linkin Park, and my favorites from A Thousand Suns, without making it bland or being too comfortable with what they already know.
The album starts out with my favorite song on the release, “Lost in the Echo”. Right off the bat Mike Shinoda, the bands rapper, comes flying out the gates with a sick verse, followed by Chester Bennington with a well sung, powerful chorus. This demonstrates exactly why I first fell in love with LP. Awesome verses by Shinoda, with fantastic choruses by Bennington. There was some of this on MtM, however, it was too little, and not the way I like it. That album has a disappointing and distinct lack of Shinoda’s classic rapped vocals all around. There are a few songs that have it the way I like on ATS, but the album itself has the songs broken up with too much filler in between. Although the next track “In My Remains” doesn’t have Shinoda’s vocals till the end, the track is energetic, and keeps the album rolling along. The next song is the album’s first single and music video, “Burn It Down”. I have to be totally honest; this song was almost as disappointing to hear the first time, as the first three songs on MtM were for me to hear the first time years ago. Hearing it as part of the album pleases me much more. It fits where it is on the track list, and flows wonderfully with the record as a whole. In my opinion, every Linkin Park lead single has been anticlimactic, with the exception of “One Step Closer”. “Somewhere I Belong” was clearly an awful choice (Come on! Why not “Faint”, or “Lying from You” followed by “Numb”???) “What I’ve Done” makes sense as the first single, however, it is one of my all time least favorite LP songs, and one of the biggest reasons I don’t like MtM. I like “The Catalyst”, but I like “Waiting for the End” much more, and I think it would have charted better as the lead single.

Living Things continues with my second favorite song of the album, “Lies Greed Misery”. I love how it starts off with the 10 seconds or so of Keyboard/Techno/Sample [not much of musician here] followed by Shinoda with the line “I-I-Imma be that na-na-na-na-nail in your coffin, saying that I softened, I was ducking down to reload”. On this song, like most of the rest of the album, it’s obvious the lyrics are as aggressive as they were on the first two albums. No more of the “Whaaaat I’ve done!!!” Boo-hoo, poor me, or “What the F*** is wrooong with meeee!!” on this album. I love this album lyrically 20 times more than Minutes to Midnight. It’s back to the aggressive style that drew me to Linkin Park in the first place, but even better. Skipping ahead to track 6, “Castle of Glass”, Linkin Park shows off their ability to write very simple songs that sound amazing. Basic looped drums, basic piano, basic vocals, and yet it sounds amazing. Simple, but beautiful. Immediately following is the song “Victimized” which clocks in at a mere 1:52. It’s the heaviest song on the album, but it leaves me asking “Why wasn’t this made longer?” Track 8 is “Roads Untraveled”, another basic and beautiful song followed by “Skin to Bone” which picks up the energy slightly. At this point I would rather see the energy go back through the roof. The song is a little boring, especially lyrically. Track 10 is “Until It Breaks”, which seems to really be Shinoda’s pet, including a pair of long verses and a short chorus by Bennington, ending with wonderful vocals by Brad Delson, lead guitarist, who didn’t really do too much on the album compared to the first three releases (but in an appropriate way). The album ends with “Tinfoil”, an interlude that leads into the final song “Powerless”. “Powerless” was the clear choice for the last song. Bennington finishes with another moving vocal performance to perfectly compliment one of the strongest songs on the album. Although it another basic song, it does what every last song on an album should do; leave you wanted to listen to the album again. There are way too many great albums that finish with random weak songs that don’t leave you wanting an encore. The last song on ATS, "The Messenger" leaves me wanted to throw the CD out my car window every time.

This album is one of the few albums of the past couple of years that didn’t make me cringe at all listening to it. I cringed from beginning to end listening to Minutes to Midnight and countless other albums I hoped would have been good recently. People will criticize this album for being a step back, but the album was definitely not a re-hash of Hybrid Theory and Meteora. They did more than enough to safely say this is no re-hash, but it will definitely please fans of old . I was not expecting the album to be half as good as it is, but it is already my favorite album of 2012. Unfortunately I don’t think there will be as many timeless classics as its predecessors, but the album is a joy to listen to over and over without having to skip any poor tracks. Bennington told Rolling Stone last summer that the band now aims to produce a new album every 18 months. If that is the truth I will be anxiously waiting for more from LP after great album. Well done Linkin Park.

Recommended If You LikeHybrid Theory; Meteora; A Thousand Suns; Narcissistic Cannibal by Korn


http://www.linkinpark.com/
 
Displaying posts 1 - 14 of 14
10:56 AM on 06/27/12
#2
TheRealJohnOC
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Great review and amazing album! I can't wait to see them on the HCT.
05:57 PM on 06/27/12
#3
Steeeve Perry
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Great review and amazing album! I can't wait to see them on the HCT.
I listened like you asked. Bet you never thought that would happen. It has a couple of redeemable moments, and is the best they have sounded since Meteora. That said, it's just not to my tastes sorry. I quickly put Celebration Rock back on. Glad you enjoy it though.

As for the review, it's decently written. But...
"Out of 15 tracks on ATS, only 9 are regular full songs (as in non “Intro/Interlude/Outro/Random Speech” tracks). Out of the 9, I only enjoy 5, but I thoroughly enjoy those 5 (“When They Come for Me”, “Robot Boy”, “Waiting for the End”, “Wretches and Kings” and “The Catalyst”)."

It's your review, woohoo!, but if I don't like four songs on an album it is not a 9.3/10.
06:32 PM on 06/27/12
#4
yoursceneisdead
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I listened like you asked. Bet you never thought that would happen. It has a couple of redeemable moments, and is the best they have sounded since Meteora. That said, it's just not to my tastes sorry. I quickly put Celebration Rock back on. Glad you enjoy it though.

As for the review, it's decently written. But...
"Out of 15 tracks on ATS, only 9 are regular full songs (as in non “Intro/Interlude/Outro/Random Speech” tracks). Out of the 9, I only enjoy 5, but I thoroughly enjoy those 5 (“When They Come for Me”, “Robot Boy”, “Waiting for the End”, “Wretches and Kings” and “The Catalyst”)."

It's your review, woohoo!, but if I don't like four songs on an album it is not a 9.3/10.

he was talking about not liking 4 songs on their LAST album
08:36 PM on 06/27/12
#5
TheRealJohnOC
@BehindtheCade Seen 701 bands live!
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I listened like you asked. Bet you never thought that would happen. It has a couple of redeemable moments, and is the best they have sounded since Meteora. That said, it's just not to my tastes sorry. I quickly put Celebration Rock back on. Glad you enjoy it though.

As for the review, it's decently written. But...
"Out of 15 tracks on ATS, only 9 are regular full songs (as in non “Intro/Interlude/Outro/Random Speech” tracks). Out of the 9, I only enjoy 5, but I thoroughly enjoy those 5 (“When They Come for Me”, “Robot Boy”, “Waiting for the End”, “Wretches and Kings” and “The Catalyst”)."

It's your review, woohoo!, but if I don't like four songs on an album it is not a 9.3/10.
Glad you listened to it. I don't expect everyone to love it but like you said, it's their best sounding album since Meteora. Gotta give them props for that. They could be still on the experimental route but they found a way to mix every album they did into one. I'm a little surprised you gave it a shot haha.
09:29 PM on 06/27/12
#6
Steeeve Perry
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he was talking about not liking 4 songs on their LAST album
Ah, the abbreviation got me, not being a big fan. That makes a lot more sense. I do find it hard to believe anyone liked that many songs on their last album though.
09:40 PM on 06/27/12
#7
Steeeve Perry
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Glad you listened to it. I don't expect everyone to love it but like you said, it's their best sounding album since Meteora. Gotta give them props for that. They could be still on the experimental route but they found a way to mix every album they did into one. I'm a little surprised you gave it a shot haha.
Yeah well I hadn't listened to them for a long time so was a little curious. It was better than any of the singles I heard from their last couple of records, or the other songs my friend would play in his car.
Also I always tell people to listen to Moon and Antarctica or Rain Dogs, so if I listen to others' suggestions I'm not being a hypocrite. Listen to those albums, by the way lol
06:19 AM on 06/28/12
#8
TheRealJohnOC
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Yeah well I hadn't listened to them for a long time so was a little curious. It was better than any of the singles I heard from their last couple of records, or the other songs my friend would play in his car.
Also I always tell people to listen to Moon and Antarctica or Rain Dogs, so if I listen to others' suggestions I'm not being a hypocrite. Listen to those albums, by the way lol
Listened to Moon and Antarctica already. Pretty good album. I'll listen to Rain Dogs and get back to you.
09:17 PM on 06/28/12
#9
Steeeve Perry
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Listened to Moon and Antarctica already. Pretty good album. I'll listen to Rain Dogs and get back to you.
Take your time with that one, it's not a first-listen album. I don't want to make assumptions but if you enjoy nu metal Rain Dogs might make you want to tear your ears off.
06:55 AM on 06/29/12
TheRealJohnOC
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Take your time with that one, it's not a first-listen album. I don't want to make assumptions but if you enjoy nu metal Rain Dogs might make you want to tear your ears off.
lol I'm pretty pumped man. I'll get to it after I get out of work tonight which should be around 1.
01:33 AM on 06/30/12
blue_light_888
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This is a great album, cheers.
07:54 PM on 07/02/12
HollywoodDied
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Didn't really care to check this album out at all, since I've never been a huge Linkin Park fan aside from a few songs. That being said, after reading through the review and seeing the rating given by the author, I decided to check it out. In doing so, I may have found one of my favorite albums of the year so far. Great review!
01:21 PM on 07/05/12
Echelon2297
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i at fist thought this cd was going to be a disappointment with how 1000 suns turned out. but this album is amazing i love every single songg off of it
10:22 PM on 07/18/12
kmilongo
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Didn't like it as much as A Thousand Suns. Then again, I've only listened to it once.
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