Sound — 9
This is the 2nd Album of Linkin Park after their fantastic and best selling debut record "Hybrid Theory". This Album continues Linkin Park at it's best: Nu-Metal. It doesn't have any really big new aspects to it, but it delivers the true sound of Linkin Park and combines elements from different genres like Rock, Metal and Rap. To describe the Sound of the Album in it's complete pride, I will review every track for itself. 01. Foreword - Just a 13-second Intro with a few bangs that leads into the real starter, "Don't Stay". 02. "Don't Stay" - This is a real bang into the album. A really cool heavy guitar riff and the first excellent performance by Chester Bennington make you listen and want more. The only thing I don't like about it is that Mike almost isn't there on it. 03. "Somewhere I Belong" - This is a fantastic song. The verse rapping of Mike is just perfect on this one and he shows what makes him such a good rapper: Soul and strong lyrics. The Chorus fits in with the emotional verse rapping of Mike, and Chester found the perfect way to make it sound heavy and energetic, but at the same time emotional and meaningful. The instrumental of the song is also really cool, I like the interesting intro and the strong chorus with soft bassy verses. 04. "Lying From You" - Real heavy rap/rock mix. Lots of cool riffs and strong lyrics in the chorus, but I think Mike's verse rapping is a little flat on this one. Overall, not a bad song by any means though. 05. "Hit The Floor" - I don't really listen too often to this song, just because it isn't one of my favorites. I like the riff by Brad that continues through the whole song, but for me there's to much rap in it, it's just not the perfect mix that Linkin Park usually delivers. 06. "Easier To Run" - This is a really emotional and natural song. The Lyrics are great and Chester does a great job together with Mike, who delivers really cool lines on this one. I don't listen to it too often, just because I think it's a little too slow. 07. "Faint" - I love this high-paced song with 135 BPM. Really really cool guitar riffs in the chorus and bridge, awesome verse rapping by Mike and Chester with one of his best performances make this song a 10! 08. "Figure" - Don't know what the hell the title means, but anyway this song is very cool. I especially like the tapped harmonic Intro and the heavy bridge. Mike's verse rapping is good, but not great on this one and Chester, as always, does an amazing job. This contains one of the best vocal team parts by Mike and Chester, just listen to that awesome bridge. 09. "Breaking The Habit" - Another awesome song. This one is actually not heavy at all, it is very different than most of the album, and has more electronic elements to it. The lyrics are great by itself and strong in it's meaning, which describes Chester's past in drugs. Speaking of Chester, he is the only vocalist on this track, but I think it is good that way because rapping really wouldn't fit on this one, and the lyrics are designed for Chester. 10. "From The Inside" - Heavy song, with emotional verses with a good combination of rapping and soft vocals by Chester. I personally like the emotion on this one that is displayed by a cool verse melody. Another part I like is the very cool, straccato-powerchord-like bridge. 11. "Nobody's Listening" - Not one of my favorites. Like "Hit The Floor", there's to much rap in here that ruins the mix. On top of that, the mood that is displayed by a Japanese flute is interesting and different than the rest of the album, but I don't really like it. 12. "Session" - A cool instrumental song. This stands for the electronic elements of Linkin Park and for that it's really cool, but you can not really call it a full band song. But overall I like the melodies and mood it is creating. 13. "Numb" - What a fantastic song. I like everything about this song, the perfect performance by Chester in the verses and the handsdown amazing hook line and also Mike's little fill ins here and there that makes you remember that there are 2 vocalists. Also the more melodic quiet verses just bang into the distorted hook and every time I hear it, it makes me strong, too.
Lyrics — 9
The lyrics on this album are, in general, amazing. There are deep in their meaning and strong at once. The only thing that is not that good is that the verse rapping of Mike just feels repetitive after a while on a few songs. But overall, they did an amazing job on their papers.
Overall Impression — 9
Like I said earlier, this album does not deliver any real new stuff to the sound of Linkin Park. But once again, those guys showed us how good you can mix different genres together and make a new, unmistakable sound out of them. I really like this album and the band and I think they did a great job with this album, although overall it cannot reach the same level than "Hybrid Theory".