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Review: "Cross Off" - Mark Morton featuring Chester

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The first studio recording featuring the beloved Chester Bennington being released after July 2017 has leaked online. It appears that Apple Music mistakenly put the track "Cross Off" online for an extended period, the collaboration with Mark Morton from Lamb of God that is on his upcoming Anesthetic album.

The track will be released as a single on January 8th, 2019.

"Cross Off" is a very heavy song, with Chester adding a mixture of screaming, singing, and rapping over huge riffs, aggressive drums, and metal breakdowns. The song shows off his uncommon ability to be able to collaborate with artists from any genre of music, whether it be hip hop, alternative rock, classic rock, etc and deliver an exceptional end product. It is a stark contrast to the pop sound of Linkin Park's One More Light album, showing Chester was still in his prime for his musical contributions in any genre. "Cross Off" could be one of Chester's most impressive vocal performances to date. The song is a huge jam that any fans of Chester's will likely enjoy over and over again for years to come.

Here is a clip of Chester filming inside the studio when he recorded the track. In April 2017, Chester tweeted, "The track I did with Mark Morton is SICK", "Who wants to hear me scream???", "I can't wait for you all to hear what Mark, Josh and I did in the studio the other night".

Unfortunately at this time, we do not know who else is on the track with Mark and Chester. Mark said David Ellefson (Megadeth) played bass and Roy Mayorga (Stone Sour) played drums on lead single "The Truth Is Dead" as well as "The Never", but it is unclear if they are on this track as well.

As a reminder, LPLive will NOT be allowing links to the leak here whatsoever. Make sure to purchase the album to support Mark Morton, especially as a thank you for releasing this track with Chester.

Preorder Anesthetic now.

Own the physical album with bundles here.

Make sure to visit our Linkinpedia page for more information.

 

12/18 EDIT: The song has now been officially released via Apple Music, Spotify, iTunes, Google Play, Deezer, and more.
12/19 EDIT: The song has now been taken down from all official release platforms.


Lyrics:


Cross off the days gone
Cross off the days gone
Gone by

Wasting away our self inflicted slow decay
What should have been, what never was
Became the end for both of us

Heavy is the hand that points the finger (finger)
Heavy is the heart that's filled with anger (anger)

So lay them all to waste
Years you've decided to erase
And cross off the days

So black out and hide behind the lines
Keep staring down the sun and note the
Light will finally blind your eyes, it's the end
Cross off the days gone by
Cross off the days gone by
Cross off the days gone by

Cutting you free
The phantom that was part of me
You have lived, you have lost
The separation's worth the cost

Heavy are the voices that go unspoken (spoken)
Heavy are the promises now broken (broken)

Well you burn below the chased
Upon destruction in your wake
Cross off the days

So black out and hide behind the lines
Keep staring down the sun and note the
Light will finally blind your eyes, it's the end
Cross off the days gone by
Cross off the days gone by
Cross off the days gone

Gone by

Making my way back from the madness
Shooting my thoughts through the blackness
And the sadness, but the fact is
I'm shooting through words like a clenched fist
Fuck sanity, I wanna bleed
Can't kill the pain
It's everything
It's all I feel
It's what I breathe
Through the hate I breathe into what I need

Heavy is the hand that points the finger (finger)
Heavy is the heart that's filled with anger (anger)

Did you survey everything you laid to waste
You cross off the days

So black out and hide behind the lines
Keep staring down the sun and note the
Light will finally blind your eyes, it's the end
Cross off the days gone by
Cross off the days gone by
Cross off the days gone by

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I LOVE THIS TRACK. It's so good. I'm happy we got it and I'm happy Chester left us with a track like this. I've always been a huge fan of Chester's solo work and all of his bands, and this is no exception, it's a great track. I'll probably have more to say about it after a few days of listening to it. It also looks like the song will be released as a single since it had it's own cover art.

 

EDIT: I already ordered Anesthetic last week, I got the Zip-Up hoodie and CD bundle. Can't wait for both.

Edited by GarretLP

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How wonderful the track is. Chester giving it 1000%! It feels like this is another unreleased LP track to me. imagining LP will take this kind of directions.

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How wonderful the track is. Chester giving it 1000%! It feels like this is another unreleased LP track to me. imagining LP will take this kind of directions.

There are probably a bunch of demos for THP and early MTM demos that have a similar sound to this song, at least vocally.

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There are probably a bunch of demos for THP and early MTM demos that have a similar sound to this song, at least vocally.

 

100% agree with you. just like how the demo from 2008, "Malathion+Tritonus", LP can do that kind of style but they choose not too. I'm sure Chester was really happy with this track because rock/heavy music always been in his soul.

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This is the sound I expected LP to deliver on THP, but oh well…

Chester's best vocal track of the last years!

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This is so awesome. There's a melodic prog metal feeling to it.

I'd always listen to prog metal bands and wonder how chester would sound singing those songs. And now i'm contemplating it.

What a blast!

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Epic ! ! !, I just love how his voice fits in most of the genres, Its already out on Spotify too.

Edited by Mazatan

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Wow amazing track! But in the other hand, I have this feeling of missing Chester's vocal work really never again will we hear this kind of amazing material?

A lot of mixed feelings but amazing song.

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Just curious what stupid move it is when the song was released via all music platforms and now it has been taken down. It was a mistake or what? But why this mistake was followed by so many music platforms?

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Just curious what stupid move it is when the song was released via all music platforms and now it has been taken down. It was a mistake or what? But why this mistake was followed by so many music platforms?

 

The same mistake was with Warner and Soundcheck Sessions: Live In Moscow, which mistakenly appeared on apple music/itunes two weeks before the planned release date. Why the labels has sent the files to digital stores too early, before the planned release date?

 

But why this mistake was followed by so many music platforms?

 

All digital platforms receive the files from the label at the same time. Usually the "release date mistake" is when there is wrong info about the release date or the label didn't exactly point, when those stores have a green light to release those files in their stores.

Edited by martinez

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This is the sound I expected LP to deliver on THP, but oh well…

Chester's best vocal track of the last years!

 

It has a similar vibe (along with Dead By Sunrise), funny hearing that it wasn't heavy enough for certain people.

 

Tastes aside, it's a fucking great track, either screaming or singing ballads, Chester could do it.

Edited by KlaytonShinoda

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It has a similar vibe (along with Dead By Sunrise), funny hearing that it wasn't heavy enough for certain people.

 

Tastes aside, it's a fucking great track, either screaming or singing ballads, Chester could do it.

 

The Hunting Party wasn't really that heavy. It was more like what people considered ''heavy'' back in the 1980's and very early 1990's. Hard rock and metal has evolved so much in the late 1990's, 2000's and now 2010's that a lot of people had a different expectation for The Hunting Party, myself included. It came out halfway through the 2010's decade and by that time, like I said, hard rock and metal was just much different. It has a few heavy songs that I liked, such as War (best song on the album by far) and Keys To The Kingdom (but the whole song wasn't heavy). It also had a lot of slower stuff like Until It's Gone, Drawbar, Final Masquerade, The Summoning, that's 4 tracks of that right there, a quarter of the album. Heavy also doesn't mean just instrumentally, there's a reason why virtually every metal and hard rock band features vocals akin to the style of Cross Off. The Hunting Party also had A LOT of Mike vocals so it was also kind of different. Another thing to note too is that while The Hunting Party had heavy-ish moments, they were for a very brief time in the song, the entire song didn't stay heavy most of the time, like Cross Off, etc. It could be due to the fact that Rob and Brad can't really play true metal and hard rock because it is hard to do, I don't think Linkin Park was ever equipped to be that heavy. The drummer in DBS, Elias, was a much better drummer than Rob, like Chester said in JK's EPK, ''they found one of the best drummers in the world''. And it's no surprise that Amir Derakh is much more advanced at playing guitar over Brad. DBS had a rock sound like that on many tracks and they were capable. Mark Morton is from Lamb Of God, which is even more advanced. The lyrics were also SUPPPERRR bland on The Hunting Party. It just felt like a very uninspired album to me. And Mike forced the rest of the band besides Chester to make the style of the album, they didn't even want to do it.

 

I'd say the heaviest Linkin Park tracks of their entire discography are probably Given Up, No More Sorrow, Qwerty, Victimized, War. Victimized I actually consider heavier than the entire album of The Hunting Party. Even just Chester's screams alone on Lost In The Echo were heavier than any vocal on The Hunting Party.

 

But yeah, Chester was super versatile, he proved he can so slow songs (She Couldn't, My December, singing on some Hybrid Theory tracks) and do heavy ass shit (OSC, APFMH, more) all the way back in 2000.

Edited by GarretLP

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While I really like The Hunting Party and really appreciate what Mike tried to do there, I did expect a lot more from that album based on their commentaries before the album came out. I agree it wasn't that heavy and the thing that got me excited about Cross Off is that I finally got to hear Chester doing the kind of music I was hoping from The Hunting Party (or a follow up album). In terms of technique, the band had evolved a lot while recording The Hunting Party and I felt like One More Light was such a disappointment because I hoped the band would try to push themselves further. Anyway, back to The Hunting Party, like Geki said, Rob and Brad aren't metal musicians, they would never be able to handle a song like Cross Off (hell, they got hurt while playing The Hunting Party songs live) and Mike is the kind of guy who thinks every album needs a ballad every few songs and every song needs a slow part. Just read that interview where he is listening to Reign In Blood by Slayer and you'll see what I'm talking about. I guess it isn't even a fair comparison because the guys playing Cross Off (from Trivium and Lamb Of God) spent their entire careers playing this kind of music, so it's no wonder they delivered such a good product.

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