Non-album tracks seems to be a frequent topic on Linkin Park forums. We have seen quite a few posts of this type in the last few days, all of them pretty good but always missing something, so we've decided to post our own take on this.
In 23 years of existence and 7 studio albums in their catalog, Linkin Park has recorded a lot of music for their own use and for collaborations with other artists. With an average of 12 songs being released in each album, it is only natural that a lot of the material they wrote never made it onto an official album release. Thankfully, the yearly compilations released to the official fan club, the LP Underground, gave us an opportunity to listen to many outtakes and demos by the band — and some others were released through various other means.
Below is a list in chronological order of those tracks with which non-hardcore fan may not be familiar. This playlist contains most of the tracks discussed in this post.
Besides their 1997 self-titled demo tape, Xero recorded other material during its tenure with vocalist Mark Wakefield. 'Closing' is one of three tracks the band contributed to the Rapology CD series issued by Urban Network Magazine (where Joe worked as Lee Cadena's assistant). The track was released on Rapology 12, to which Mike also contributed with original artwork. It samples 'Root' by Deftones (one of the band's early influences) and contains a shoutout to the Junkyard Scientific project.
'Drop' was produced, recorded and performed by Mike Shinoda (credited as "Kenji") and Joe Hahn (credited as "Artofficial") for Rapology 13. It is one of the many freestyles with the same title found in the series. Mike created artwork for the compilation.
'Fiends' is a track by Xero from Rapology 14. This time featuring vocals by Styles Of Beyond manager 007 whose verse from 'Spies Like Us' is also sampled in the song. This is the last of three known songs on which Junkyard Scientific is mentioned. Mike created artwork for this album as well.
'Slip' is one of Linkin Park's oldest songs, written when the band was still called "Xero" and had Mark Wakefield on vocals and was in the first batch of songs recorded and reworked with Chester Bennington after he joined the band in March 1999. Mike says they did various versions of this song but never felt compelled to release it. A version of 'Slip' (incorrectly titled as a 1998 demo) was released in the LP Underground Eleven CD. The band can be seen rehearsing an alternate version of the song during Marc Ostrick's Lockout web series.
'Blue' is another demo from the first batch of songs that Hybrid Theory worked on together with Chester. The band didn't like the song, but thought there was something special about the vocal at the end of the song, which was reworked into the chorus of 'Crawling.' The song is incorrectly titled as a 1998 demo in the LP Underground Eleven CD.
So Far Away
'So Far Away' is notable for being the only known pre-Minutes To Midnight song where Mike sings (instead of rapping) lead vocals for the entire song. It supposedly came from the same batch of songs as the released versions of 'Slip' and 'Blue' and is also incorrectly titled as a 1998 demo in the LP Underground 12 CD. Some samples and riffs from the song were taken from 'Hurry,' a song which had its drums and guitars recorded straight into Mike's MPC. One of the beats from 'So Far Away' was reused on the instrumental demo 'Soundtrack' during the Meteora sessions.
'Dedicated' is a song produced by Mike Shinoda in 1999. Supposedly an outtake from the Hybrid Theory EP sessions. It was released in the LP Underground 2.0 CD in 2002 after Mike used verses from the song on a freestyle at The Wake Up Show earlier that year. Samples of the song were used in the creation of 'It's Goin' Down.' Although the full song has never been performed live, the first verse of 'Dedicated' was used over the intro of 'Points Of Authority' on August 13, 2009 in Taipei and during 'Lift Off' on March 26, 2019 in Tel Aviv. The first verse and chorus were also performed during rehearsal on October 13, 2018 in New York per fan request.
Originally titled 'Emo,' 'She Couldn't' is a song created during the Hybrid Theory sessions and cut due to the sample of Mos Def's vocals from 'B-Boy Document '99.' The song was discovered in 2009 when a 8-track demo CD by Hybrid Theory was sold on eBay. It is notable for going against a lot of stereotypes regarding early Linkin Park material. For one, the song clocks in at well over 5 minutes in length and it's also one of the softest songs the band has produced, particularly from this era.
'My December' is a song written and recorded specifically for Kevin & Bean's album The Real Slim Santa in 2000 and eventually released in various editions of Hybrid Theory, the import single of 'One Step Closer,' the Japanese EP for 'In The End' and the LP Underground 2.0 CD. It was written and recorded in only two days, with the majority of the song written by Mike inside Linkin Park's tour bus. It was recorded at The Loft in Nashville, Tennessee on October 9, 2000 (a day before Linkin Park's show in the city). The song talks about going home after being on the road away from loved ones. 'My December' has been performed live multiple times from 2000 to 2008, usually in acoustic or piano versions, making it one of Linkin Park's most well known b-sides. The album version of the song was only performed during the Meteora North American Tour in 2004.
Along with 'Carousel,' 'And One' and 'Part Of Me,' 'High Voltage' was one of the songs from the Hybrid Theory EP in consideration for Linkin Park's debut album. The song was completely remixed by Mike, with a new instrumental, new chorus and new vocals by Chester, and released in the 'One Step Closer' single in 2001 and special edition of Hybrid Theory in 2002. Like much of their early material, the track is censored. This remix was performed live throughout the Hybrid Theory tour in 2001. The song was also performed at Fort Minor shows in 2015, but with a new instrumental featuring parts of 'Suicide Music' (The Raid: Redemption soundtrack), 'C.R.E.A.M.' (by Wu-Tang Clan) and 'Rebel Without A Pause' (by Public Enemy).
It's Goin' Down
When X-Ecutioners were working on their second studio album, Built From Scratch, a Loud Records executive brought them a copy of Hybrid Theory and the DJ crew loved what they heard. Rob Swift called Mike Shinoda that same night and invited Linkin Park to work on a new song with them. Being a big fan of X-Ecutioners, Mike accepted right way and started working on it while on tour. Originally scheduled for an August 2001 release, the single was officially released in early 2002 and instantly became the group's greatest hit. The song is labeled as a collaboration with Mike and Joe, although on demo versions found on promo CDs the duo is credited as Linkin Park. 'It's Goin' Down' was performed regularly during the Projekt Revolution Tour 2002 and returned to the setlists in early 2004 after being completely absent in 2003. For the second half of 2004, the song was performed as part of a medley with 'Step Up' and 'Nobody's Listening.' Mike has referred to the song as "essentially a Fort Minor track before the name existed." Because of this, 'It's Goin' Down' has been performed at numerous Fort Minor and Mike Shinoda shows as well. Mike would rap the first verse of 'It's Goin' Down' over the intro of 'Points Of Authority' and the outro of 'Castle Of Glass' sporadically during the Minutes To Midnight and One More Light touring cycles.
'Unreleased' is a track by hip-hop group The Visionaries recorded in collaboration with Mike and Joe in 2001. The song was never included on any album, but was eventually released by 2Mex in 2015 through Bandcamp. Mike reused lyrics from 'High Voltage' in the song.
Standing In The Middle
'Standing In The Middle' is a song recorded by Motion Man and Kutmasta Kurt with Mike Shinoda around the same time the trio collaborated on 'Enth E Nd.' A censored version was released in 2004 in the LP Underground 4.0 CD about a year after Mike rapped the first verse of the song over an extended version of 'Nobody's Listening' in the UK tour. No explicit version is available.
'A.06' is an instrumental song created during the Meteora sessions. The band tried to add vocals to it but didn't like how it turned out. The instrumental was eventually shortened and released in the LP Underground 2.0 CD while the original long version was released in the LP Underground 9.0: Demos CD. 'A.06' was performed live in a few special occasions during the Meteora touring cycle in 2003 and 2004. Known performances happened at the Top Of The Pops, CD:UK, Tucson, Kerrang! Awards and Mountain View.
Sold My Soul To Yo Mama
'Sold My Soul To Yo Mama' is a song created almost entirely by Joe on his own and released in the LP Underground 4.0 CD. It contains samples of 'Points Of Authority,' 'Ppr:Kut' and the Collision Course DVD and an instrumental reference to 'Somewhere I Belong.'
Rock And Roll (Could Never Hip Hop Like This) Part 2
Handsome Boy Modeling School's sequel to their 1999 hit 'Rock And Roll (Could Never Hip Hop Like This).' The song is an attempt to show the influence of hip hop in the pop culture by putting together people who perfected the genre and people who use hip hop to make an impact in other genres. It features Mike Shinoda, Chester Bennington, Lord Finesse, Qbert, Jazzy Jay and Grand Wizard Theodore. The song was released on Handsome Boy Modeling School's second studio album White People in 2004, in the same track as an interlude by Tim Meadows called 'Knockers.'
Announcement Service Public
'Announcement Service Public' is a song recorded in 2006 during the Minutes To Midnight sessions. The title of the song is the expression "Public Service Announcement" with the words in reverse order. This is due to the fact that when the song is played backwards, Chester can be heard saying "You should brush your teeth and you should wash your hands." It was released in the LP Underground 6.0 CD along with 'Qwerty.'
While rehearsing for the Japan tour in 2006, the band tried to finish a demo called 'Grecian' so they could perform it live but it didn't work. Phoenix then brought in a new idea that was molded into 'Qwerty.' The song came together in an hour and then it was rearranged over the next three days in the rehearsal room and the studio. The lyrics were actually finished on the flight to Japan. This is the only known case of a Linkin Park song being performed live before being recorded. After the band returned from the tour, the song was finished and recorded in studio and released in the LP Underground 6.0 CD. During the Projekt Revolution Tour 2007, the band performed a hybrid of the 2006 version and the studio version in Mountain View, Dallas, Charlotte, Cuyahoga Falls and Toronto. A mashup with 'Victimized' was performed throughout the Living Things touring cycle.
'Asbestos' is a demo from the Minutes To Midnight sessions found in the LP Underground 12 CD. Despite its guitar heavy nature, guitarist Brad Delson didn't work on the demo. He wrote on the booklet: "This may be the first time I've ever heard this one!"
'Debris' is a demo started during the Minutes To Midnight sessions and revisited during the A Thousand Suns sessions (the song can be heard in the Meeting Of A Thousand Suns documentary). It was released in the LP Underground 12 CD as a "Minutes To Midnight Demo."
Chance Of Rain
According to Mike, the final title of 'Chance Of Rain' was 'Voices,' but they decided to include it in the LP Underground 15 CD under its demo title because it never got out of the demo phase. The song was cut from Minutes To Midnight because the band felt they already had enough mid-tempo and mellow songs on the album.
No Roads Left
'No Roads Left' is a song created and finished with David Campbell during the Minutes To Midnight sessions under the working title 'Patients.' Linkin Park tried to record it in one take but chose to use individual multitrack recordings for the final product instead. Chester recorded vocals for the song, but he insisted that Mike was a better fit to sing it. It was a iTunes pre-order bonus track for Minutes To Midnight and later appeared on tour editions of the album. The original 2007 version was replaced for an alternate mix when the "Mastered For iTunes" edition of the album was issued in 2013. This same version is included in the 2017 vinyl reissue of Minutes To Midnight as a bonus track. The song appeared on rehearsal setlists for the June 2008 European Tour in support of Minutes To Midnight in Set X to start the encore. However, the band decided not to play the song as they thought it didn't sound good. The first verse and chorus were debuted live in 2011 during the bridge of 'Bleed It Out' and was only performed twice, in Chiba and Yokohama.
Across The Line
'Across The Line' originated from two separate demos created by Mike Shinoda. After its demo version, 'Japan,' was featured in the Making Of Minutes To Midnight DVD, fans started asking the band to release the song and Linkin Park decided to give what they wanted with the release of LP Underground 9.0: Demos. The song originally had the bridge instrumental building up to the intro sample, but it was cut down for the release. The original long version was discovered by fans years later on an European Union promo CD. An alternate mix of 'Across The Line' was released in the "Mastered For iTunes" edition of Minutes To Midnight in 2013.
What We Don't Know
'What We Don't Know' is another outtake from Minutes To Midnight. It was mixed Neal Avron, who mixed the rest of the album, and released in the LP Underground X: Demos CD.
'Blackbirds' is another song Linkin Park worked on with David Campbell for Minutes To Midnight. The song didn't make the album, but was eventually released as part of the 8-Bit Rebellion! iOS game and later as an iTunes bonus track for A Thousand Suns. The song is unlocked along with an slideshow of the A Thousand Suns sessions after finishing the game. The rap in the intro is actually a demo verse Mike had recorded for the bridge.
'Little Boxes' is a Malvina Reynolds song covered by Linkin Park for the 3rd season of Weeds in 2007. To date, it is the only known cover song ever recorded in studio by Linkin Park. Their version lacks the second half of the original song.
We Made It
'We Made It' is a Busta Rhymes song produced by Cool & Dre for his eighth album, at the time titled 'Blessed.' The rapper thought the beat and original chorus sounded like Linkin Park and decided to invite the band to work on the track. This was the first ever collaboration with another artist where members of the band (Mike, Brad and Chester) were credited as "Linkin Park." The band recorded their parts while on tour in Taipei and Shanghai in 2007 and the single was released in 2008 along with a music video featuring cameo appearances from Styles of Beyond, Bishop Lamont and Lamar Odom. Different lyrics were written and recorded for the clean and dirty versions of the song. 'We Made It' was performed live by Linkin Park only six times during the Projekt Revolution Tour 2008 in Mansfield, Burgettstown, Camden, Hartford, Wantagh and Holmdel. This was due to Busta Rhymes being dropped from Interscope Records and having to leave the tour. For this reason, the single wasn't included in the album — released through Flipmode and Universal Motown under the title "Back On My B.S." — either.
Pretend To Be
During promotion for Minutes To Midnight, the band stated they had thirty "close to final form" songs that they filtered out to come to the seventeen songs that were finished for the album. 'Pretend To Be' was supposedly one of those thirty songs. It was revisited and finished in 2008 and first released in 2010 as part of the A Decade Underground compilation before appearing in the LP Underground X: Demos CD.
'Basil' is a little rap Mike wrote quickly over a beat that he made on his laptop in 2008. At the time the band thought they would be doing music for a video game. The project didn't work out, but the ideas of the songs and the vibe of the project eventually turned into A Thousand Suns. The demo was released in the LP Underground 15 CD.
'Lockjaw' is an instrumental song created by Mike Shinoda (with drums by Rob Bourdon) exclusively for Digidesign while reviewing their ProTools 8 software in December 2008. It was released to LPU members on Christmas 2008 following fan requests for the song.
I Have Not Begun
'I Have Not Begun' is a song recorded in 2009 during the A Thousand Suns sessions. It was released in the LP Underground X: Demos CD in 2010 after Mike rapped verses from the song at a The Roots show earlier that year. Although the track dates from 2009, the lyrics are older than that.
'New Divide' is one of Linkin Park's greatest hits and most well known songs, becoming a staple on the setlists. It was recorded exclusively for the Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen soundtrack. Besides the original song, Linkin Park wrote with Hans Zimmer various interpolations on that theme. The track 'Nest' is featured in the score of the film.
'Grudgematch' was recorded in 2009, further along in the process of A Thousand Suns when the band were looking at things that were going on in the world for inspiration. "Maybe you can think of like militias in third world countries," said Shinoda. The demo was released as a downloadable bonus track for the LP Underground 15 CD.
'Not Alone' is supposedly another one of the thirty "close to final form" songs from the Minutes To Midnight sessions. After the earthquake in Haiti in 2010, the band scrapped all the words, wrote new lyrics and remixed the song in 24 hours to get it ready for the Download To Donate For Haiti compilation. It received a music video directed by Bill Boyd which shows the band working on the song along with footage of the crisis in Haiti. A digital single was released a year after its inclusion in the compilation.
'TooLeGit' is a demo created in 2010 during the A Thousand Suns sessions and released as a downloadable bonus track for the LP Underground 15 CD in 2015. The song features rough lyrics created by free association in the first verse and a melody with no words in the chorus.
Symphonies Of Light Reprise
'Symphonies Of Light Reprise' is an acoustic reprise of 'The Catalyst' created during the A Thousand Suns sessions in 2010 supposedly to serve as an interlude in the album. It was released in the LP Underground 16 CD.
'Issho Ni' is an instrumental song created by Mike Shinoda in the fourth week of March 2011 exclusively for Music For Relief's Download To Donate: Tsunami Relief compilation. The song was never performed live, but it was used in the A Thousand Horizons art show in 2011.
'Animals' is a 2011 demo from the Living Things sessions released in the LP Underground 15 CD. According to Mike, the groove of the drums on 'Animals' inspired him to create 'Roads Untraveled.'
The Last Line
'The Last Line' is a track on the full-length directorial debut of Joe Hahn, Mall, with a soundtrack credited to Chester Bennington, Dave Farrell, Joe Hahn, Mike Shinoda and Alec Puro. The song was started during the Minutes To Midnight sessions under the title 'Ammosick' and reworked during the A Thousand Suns sessions, when it received the new title. In the film, however, the song is listed in the credits as 'Ammosick,' have a different mix from the soundtrack album version and contains different lyrics in the second verse. This version was leaked online a few months before the official soundtrack release containing the final version. Neal Avron, who mixed both Minutes To Midnight and A Thousand Suns, is credited for mixing the song (while the rest of the soundtrack was mixed by Mike).
It Goes Through
'It Goes Through' was a song created under the title 'Luna' for Living Things and released in the Mall soundtrack. An early version of the song was used in the trailer for the film.
Another song from the Living Things sessions used on Mall. Originally titled 'Warm Spell,' the guitar loop on the song was recorded by Mike on his iPhone during a band meeting so he would remember it. That very recording, complete with other band members talking over the guitar-playing, formed the backbone of the eventual song.
This is the song with scat vocals played during the ending credits of Mall. Only an instrumental version was included in the soundtrack album.
Another song from Mall. It's unknown when exactly 'White Noise' was started, but the lyrics of the song can be seen during the The Hunting Party album trailer. Joe says the song "helps define that thrashy-ness of one of the characters in the film who is the catalyst of the negative things that go on." It is the only song on the film which didn't have its title changed for the soundtrack album.
Darker Than Blood
'Darker Than Blood' is a collaboration between Steve Aoki and Linkin Park started in January 2013 under the title 'Horizons' around the same time they recorded 'A Light That Never Comes.' According to Aoki, they had written around four or five songs together. They would sporadically work on 'Darker Than Blood' during The Hunting Party sessions until they finally felt it was ready for release on Aoki's third studio album Neon Future II in 2015. The song was performed in full with Linkin Park only once, at the Relief Live! event that year. A shortened version featuring the first verse and chorus was performed live during Linkin Park sets in 2015.
Things In My Jeep
'Things In My Jeep' is a The Lonely Island song from their Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping film. Mike did addtional production on the song and Chester recorded the chorus for the soundtrack release. The original version of the song (without Linkin Park) was used in the film.
Waiting For Tomorrow
'Waiting For Tomorrow' is a collaboration between Martin Garrix, Pierce Fulton, Mike Shinoda and Brad Delson recorded very early in the One More Light sessions in 2015. Originally meant for a studio album by Garrix, the song was released in 2018 on his Bylaw EP after years in development hell. Although Garrix has referred to the song as a collaboration with Linkin Park, the track is listed as "featuring Mike Shinoda." Two different demo versions of the song have been performed live before its release: one by Martin Garrix and another by Pierce Fulton. The song has never been performed with Mike.
What Are You Worth
'What Are You Worth' is a collaboration between Linkin Park and Brian Howes recorded during the One More Light sessions in 2016. The song was leaked in early 2019 and eventually found its way online. Know that sharing this song is against the band and label's wishes and it will be taken down by Warner.
Looking For An Answer
To date, this is the last known song written for Linkin Park. The song was created by Mike after Chester passed and was only performed at the Hollywood Bowl show in 2017 (watch it here). After the show, Mike sent the band a copy of the song so they could work on it. In early 2018, he said he had a version with various "cool sounds" but that seemed to take away the power of the song. He was trying to figure out the right presentation.
Last week Scott Stapp (Creed / Art of Anarchy) released a video for his new solo single 'Gone Too Soon' which is a tribute to stars who have passed away too soon. It features footage of Chester Bennington and Chris Cornell together on stage during the Projekt Revolution Tour 2008.
Joe Hahn has announced his first DJ performance since October 2018 when he was in Shanghai, China. He will be heading to Incheon, South Korea in August!
Joe says, "I will be performing at MUSIC FESTIVAL YOURSUMMER 2019 on August 15th at Paradise City Incheon, Korea. See you there!
Tickets on sale now: http://bit.ly/2LBbKZd
Other artists include Zedd, Cash CAsh, Chvrches, Prep, Hrvy, Superorganism, Lolo Zouai, Alan Walker, Rita Ora, and Raiden. The show will take place at Culture Park @ Paradise City in Incheon.
Recently, when tweeting and posting about the month of July on Twitter, LPFanCorner and LPLive both noticed that a lot of people didn't want to celebrate their birthdays this month. Some felt bad for celebrating during the month, some thought you couldn't enjoy July anymore. We want to let you know that celebrating life is a great thing, and you are important.
As we approach July 20th two full years after the passing of the legendary Chester Bennington, we invite you to join us on July 18th for a different take on a listening party. Because LPFanCorner always puts others before themselves, they wanted to make a "birthday playlist" of Linkin Park + birthday/party songs and do a classic listening party with everyone. LPLive thought the idea was great and immediately wanted to join in. Because if you can put a smile on someone's face, why not?
Anna Shinoda recently elaborated about birthdays in July, saying, "So I want everyone with birthdays on or around July 20th to remember it is important to celebrate your life and to allow yourself to feel joy. It is healthy and needed. Living life and feeling joy is a way to #MakeChesterProud."
If you have an hour or so, here are the details:
#ChesterAndYou Listening Party
Hosted by LPFanCorner and LPLive
July 18, 2019
via Twitter + Spotify (links coming soon)
We look forward to seeing you then!
The new edition of Kerrang features an in-depth look at Linkin Park's story. The magazine says, "Twenty years ago, Chester Bennington joined the ranks of a then-little-known LA quintet going by the name Xero. The name might soon change, but what Linkin Park would go on to achieve together during the next two decades would change not only their lives, but those of millions around the world. Over 28 pages, we celebrate the story, album by album, of a band like no other…"
The issue can be ordered here, and it ships globally: https://kerrang.newsstand.co.uk/
Since Kerrang obviously had to work with Linkin Park on this issue, we are expecting some good information to come from it!