Linkin Park: A Thousand Suns

A Thousand Suns

(Linkin Park)
Release Date: 
Tuesday, September 14, 2010

1. The Requiem
First 30 seconds is the song softly & slowly fading in. Female voice distorted to sound like a creepy little girl speaking with faint music (piano) in the background. She sings “God Saves Us Everyone” same lyrics from “The Catalyst”. No Mike no Chester, not Linkin Park. 2:01
Grade: D

2. The Radiance
Military inspired music & noises with a speech from Robert Oppenheimer playing over it. No Mike No Chester, not Linkin Park. 0:58
Grade: D

3. Burning In The Skies
This song is slow like it is on the verge of something; but it never gets there. The lyrics & singing of “What I Don’t Deserve” is very similar to that of “What I’ve Done”. Seeing as “New Divide” was just a weaker copy of “What I’ve Done”, this one seems like a weaker clone of “New Divide”. “I like pizza Steve”. But at least this song has the band in it. 4:13
Grade: C-

4. Empty Spaces
War noises (think Pink Floyd “The Wall”). Once again filler track, more skit no music. 0:18
Grade: F

5. We They Come For Me
Heavy drums & beats, rap, finally starting to see a glimmer of the band I came to love. There is this worldly, Middle Eastern, tribal flair to the song and a political feel. Starting to sense the theme of this album more & more. 4:56
Grade: B-

6. Robot Boy
Starts off with piano, harmonizing vocals. The singing is soft & mellow. The song never really picks up so what you hear at the beginning is pretty much what you are going to get all the way through. It is a little redundant and could have been ended a bit earlier while still capturing the same message. 4:29
Grade: C

7. Jornada Del Muerto

Faint singing that slowly comes in for you to realize that it is Chester (I’m pretty sure at least it is a tiny bit distorted) singing in Spanish. Soon he stops singing and you are left with just instrumental. 1:35
Grade: D+

8. Waiting For The End
Linkin Park’s 2nd single off this album. It is heavier in comparison to the earlier tracks on the album and thus sounds much better. There is almost a reggae influence to it and since there is the whole rap-rock thing it is a little close to 311. Chester is back to singing softly & sweetly. It has a bit of catchiness to it which is missing from other tracks on the album. 3:52
Grade: B-

9. Blackout
Darker that previous things almost as if there was a mild industrial/NIN inspiration there for the music. Chester takes on a bit of rapping then turns FINALLY to angry yelling. The vocals & the music do not match up but it is still interesting maybe because of the anger alone. When it seems like things are finally starting to go right Mr. Han takes control and takes things a little too far with the repetition and the song feels like it ends. However Mike starts to sing with Chester joining along which had me looking to see if another track started. The song is somewhat disjointed; but I wish that they had followed this path more with the style of the album. 4:40
Grade: B-

10. Wretches And Kings
Starts with a speech from Mario Savio backed by heavy beats. Mike does rap some in this song with Chester popping in from time to time with an odd Spanish accent. Periodically you get the late 80’s early 90’s rap “Hey” chant. Could not get “Bring The Noise” by Public Enemy out of my head.  4:15
Grade: C

11. Wisdom, Justice, And Love
Piano begins with as a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. speech begins to play. His voice is slowly distorted until it is at the point of robotic and certain words are repeated over & over again. Nothing to listen to on this track. I feel those out there that want to hear Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. speak do not want to do so when it is a robot voice being spun by a DJ. 1:39
Grade: F

12. Iridescent
Same piano from track 11. This is a soft, sad sounding song that is giving simple beats and harmonizing vocals. By the end of the song it drifts into a “We Are The World” epic type of sing along. It is just boring and an odd sound for Linkin Park. 4:57
Grade: C+

13. Fallout
The auto-tune robot vocals are back that slowly fade into what I’m guessing is Chester over some soft feedback noise and then the song is over. 1:23
Grade: D-

14. The Catalyst
First single from this album. It is heavier, angry, there is yelling & rap; this is close to the Linkin Park people have come to know. It is a great song compared to this album and the last and one that will have fans sticking it out too see if in the future they can recapture their old sound. Compared to their first two albums this would have been a B-side song but it would have fit in. It shows promise that somewhere deep inside there is still something there. 5:40
Grade: B+ to A-

15. The Messenger
Singer songwriter style guitar. This song actually disgusted me. Imagine college guy that kind of knows how to play a guitar, just got dumped by his girlfriend, got a little drunk, wrote her a song, and is now singing it outside her window. This is that song. Chester is singing his heart out, voice cracking, and almost on the verge of tears from the sounds of it. Not good, not good at all. 3:02
Grade: D-

There was definitely an theme to the album of pro-troops/anti-war; but it isn’t completely shoved in your face. It really sort of felt like a concept album. There are 15 tracks, 5 of them are under 1:40, 6 tracks can barely be consider songs. That leaves you with 9 tracks of less than stellar music. 90% of the album would be easy to fall asleep too and it almost sounds as if that is intentional. There are harmonies, soft music, & mellow vocals. It is almost as if Mike is sick of rapping, Chester is sick of screaming so they decided to compromise and both just singing casually.

I do understand bands wanting to branch out and change things up, tinker around, get creative. If you are going to do that though at least be good at it, don't release half assed music with filler tracks that have no purpose being there. As a fan I am more than a little disappointed with this sound and the fact that this is the 2nd album drifting even further away from what they started out as I can’t help but to think that this is what we will continue to get. Goodbye to the fantastically talented angry rap-rock and hello to the mediocre light rock with slight activist undertones.

Review by Pandora
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