Sound — 9
The sound is the element of this record that absolutely glows. Mike Shinoda and his friends did a spectacular job on the sound for this record. The thing that I love the most about this CD is how big and structured the overall sound is. "Remember the Name" uses violins in the backgorund to give the song a catchy, melodic kind of rhythm mixed with cool rap beats. Several songs such as "Right Now" and "Where'd You Go" incorporate the use of a piano to give the songs a dark, moody feel that works very well with Mike Shinoda's lyrics. However, the sound absolutely explodes during the closing track, "Slip Out The Back." The song starts out with the sounds just a bell ringing, then gradually escalates, including a piano in the 2nd verse, with violins entering during the 2nd chorus, until the song explodes with a backing choir coming in with all of the other instruments to make the song the single greatest closing track that I have ever heard on ANY album. No problems in the sound department whatsoever.
Lyrics — 7
The lyrics on this album are good for the most part. Mike and his friends do a great job making the songs catchy and fun to listen to overall. However, there are some moments on the album in which the lyrics do need work. The lyrics can get a little corny sometimes, and the moments where they did really stuck out to me while I was listening to the album. But there are times where the lyrics are very well-written. "Believe Me," for example, the lyrics are very clever and catchy. They combine with the music to make the song a highlight on the album. Yes, the songwriting is weak at times, but for the most part, Mike does a great job of making the lyrics flow with the songs and give each song it's specific style and feel.
Overall Impression — 8
I will tell you right now that I was not looking forward to this album. I thought that it would be garbage because I personally cannot STAND rap music and I thought that the Jay-Z/Linkin Park Collision Course album was without a doubt one of the worst albums that I've heard in my life. This album is unlike any rap that I have ever heard before, and when you listen to the album you will understand what I'm talking about. This album is the kind of thing that will appeal to people who really don't listen to rap, and it will also appeal to people who are rap buffs as well. I think that the thing that really makes this album special is that the sounds are so expertly crafted. The Rising Tied flawlessly fuses deep, melodic sounds with catchy everyday rap beats to give a unique feel to the album that sets it apart from everything else. Another thing that sets it apart from everything else out there is the fact that Mike Shinoda wrote each song on this album to communicate a specific thing. "Kenji" is a song documenting the story of Mike's father during World War II, when the Japanese people that were within America were forced to leave their homes and go to certain camps because the United States was looking for Japanese spies after the Pearl Harbor bombings. This song has no chorus, but it is written that way to better convey the emotion that Mike is trying to get across to the listener. Also, "Where'd You Go" was written with the intention of conveying how people feel who have family members that are away from them due to their jobs. Overall, this is a great album that is worthy of your time and deserves to be appreciated for it's uniqueness and overall quality. Overall, this is an impressive album that is worthy of your time and deserves to be appreciated for it's uniqueness and overall quality. It's fun to listen to, it's got a lot of great songs (my favorites being Slip Out the Back, for it's fantastic sound quality, and Right Now, for it's array of heartfelt messages about unexpected life changing events, people taking things for granted, and how someone out there always has it worse than you), and it deserves to be seen as something more than just another cliche-filled hip-hop album, but more as a true work of art. Give it a shot.