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The lead single of an album is meant to be the song that captures the attention of fans (wether diehard or occasionals) and a way to present the record.

With our fav band LP, we sometimes faced great choices, weird ones and simply not convincing picks.

I personally think it this way, going on for each record:

1. OSC: this falls in the middle, it's not a bad choice IMO, presented the band with that aggressive/nu metal sound that was super popular, but on the other hand I think many will agree that OSC is one of the weakest songs off the record.

2. SIB: Good choice, radio friendly for the time and displays the band's highlights. It may not be the best song on the record but cool choice.

3. WID: perfect choice to display the change in sound, very representative of MTM philosophy (more rock, less nu metal) and a major hit for the band.

4. The Catalyst: super risky move, one of my fav LP songs, but they took a high risk picking a song that's not radio friendly at all. WFTE as a 2nd single was very appropriate to balance that.

5. BID: not the strongest song on the record IMO (I'd put it just above a couple of other songs off LT) but it was a massive hit, so I guess it was the right move. I'd have picked IMR as second instead of LITE, looking at things from a "commercial" POV.

6. GATS: disastrous choice IMO, the song is good and I know the band wanted to drop it as 1st single going VS the label, but the song sound and that Project Spark video made it the least succesful first single of their career. Another risky move, but managed in a less "clever" way than Catalyst. I'd have picked Rebellion as 1st single, still heavy but more radio appealing.

7. Heavy: this is the weird one, in its studio version the song is easily one of the weakest songs on the album (even tho I like it) and even hardcore fans always put it in the weak side of the record (with stuff like GG) but I think it was a quite good choice commercially, because it entered Billboard and stayed there for months and got pretty good radio play.

What's your opinion you guys? Disagree with me? Show me your thoughts;) 

Edited by PurpleFlinstoneVitamins92
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I am making my list based on what I believe was the perfect choice to have a successful comebacks 

 

HT /OSC

METEORA /SIB 

MTM /WID

ATS / WFTE

LT / BID

THP / KEYS: Heavy song that has the elements of the old LP and a guitar solo that shows some kind of evolution, very catchy.

OML / Nobody Can Save Me The only song that stands out and has the signature LP sound the rest of the album is a complete mess of disposable music (except for OML)

 

Being a kid on 2001 and listening to OSC for the first time was an experience that I will never forget there's no way that they did a bad call on that one.

 

 

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I don't think any of the lead singles were the best call personally. This is a cool thread. I don't think the band even really chooses the lead singles, or at least they didn't until later albums, and even then, they had push from the label for different songs.

 

Hybrid Theory: One Step Closer is a great song, I love it, but I think In The End would have made a better first single. It had even more mainstream appeal to it and I think it would have worked just as well for the band, if not more. One Step Closer definitely got them more attention from the metal/nu-metal/hard rock/rock types of people but I don't think it really represents their full sound of the album, which a lead single should kind of do, but not even just sound wise, just in the style in general, you know? Again, I love One Step Closer, I'm just saying. It's actually probably my second or third favorite song off of the album.

Meteora: Faint always seemed like the best choice for the lead single here for me. I think Faint is amazing. Always have. Has 100% energy the entire time, had super mainstream appeal for what was popular at the time, etc. It's just flawless LP to me. It represents everything the band was at that time to me, in a much different way than One Step Closer did not, even though they're both heavy. Faint has the classic Mike rapping, the classic Chester screaming and singing, it has classic LP lyrics, etc. And the length is perfect. I like lead singles to not just represent the whole album, but also hit hard and good, right off the bat, but they don't ALWAYS have to be the most energetic or heavier songs, Faint just works here for that.

 

Minutes To Midnight: Now, this will be controversial. And What I've Done is literally my favorite LP song of all time. However, I don't think it needed to be made. I'm glad it was, obviously, because it is my favorite LP song. But Mike and the band created it because a few people close to them told them that they didn't feel like the album had a proper first single, or that the album was ''missing a piece'', I can't remember the interview, but I remember Mike saying the phrase of someone close to them telling them the album was missing a final piece and I liked that line a lot. But I personally don't think it was missing one. Across The Line was the last song to be cut from the main album according to Mike, so I'm assuming they cut that for What I've Done then, right? Across The Line is also amazing, the album would still have been a 10 out of 10 to me if it were still released with Across The Line. And I don't think Across The Line is the best choice. That goes to... wait for it... Leave Out All The Rest. Yes. An amazing, heartfelt, totally mainstream driven pop rock/alternative song. It's so good. I remember the band saying Rick told them he knew it would be a single from the beginning stages. I also remember Chester saying they worked really hard on the lyrics and the song in general to make sure it was something special. I feel like it encapsulates the Minutes To Midnight sound perfectly, too. Minutes To Midnight was all over the place, it had tons of styles, but one of the main styles was a alternative rock driven sound, with Leave Out All The Rest is, but it also has some light hip-hop flavoring with the beat, as well as some light electronic flavoring with the intro, it's perfect, since those genres are very lightly sprinkled on a few other of the Minutes To Midnight tracks. I think it would have blew up huge as a lead single. Just has that feel to it, and this is back when the promotion was top notch. I think Minutes To Midnight, which did very well, would have done even better. Of course, this may have meant the band not getting asked to be on the Transformers soundtrack, but who knows, maybe they still would have, since What I've Done was already written long before that anyways, it's not like it What I've Done was written for Transformers like New Divide was years later, it was just used similar to a lot of bands being used for soundtracks at the time. Maybe Leave Out All The Rest would have too. Mike also said as recently as 2017 that it's in his top favorite 3 LP songs and he also said in 2015 that it was the band's collective favorite from the album so I think it would have done the song more justice than it got being the final single off of the album, even though it still did pretty well actually, with Twilight an everything else.

 

A Thousand Suns: Nothing on A Thousand Suns is really radio friendly to me except for Waiting For The End. So I'd pick that one, naturally. I personally don't love the song but I know many fans do. I love the album but it's in the lower list of favorites from me on the album. I'm shocked The Catalyst did as good as it did, it's not mainstream at all to me. It's an amazing song, but yeah. Waiting For The End could have worked though, I think, I think people would have really loved it just as much, maybe more. The structure works, I would personally have cut the Mike intro somehow for the album to make it appeal more, but we all know LP didn't want to do that for ATS at all, which I like. So yeah. I remember Warner wanting the band to pick Meadowlands (Waiting For The End) or Iridescent as the single. I don't think Iridescent works as a single at all, personally, even the TF3 version they ended up putting out. I love Iridescent, don't get me wrong, it's beautiful. It just doesn't work as a single to me. It's too advanced for mainstream listeners, too special, much like the rest of the album. But Waiting For The End does work, even without making a version with a different intro like I said, it still works. And I know the fanbase and the band both love the song a lot as they have mentioned, I think it was also in Mike's top 3 as recent as 2017. As far as representing the album, I feel like it does and it doesn't, idk. But then again I don't think A Thousand Suns can be shown to the mainstream at all because it's too advanced for most people, so once again, it does work as a single. Like it doesn't represent the album to me personally but it does enough that it works for the mainstream, if that makes sense.

 

Living Things: Burn It Down did really well but I wouldn't have picked it. I would have picked Lost In The Echo, personally. For several reasons. It brings back the old LP style in a new way, for one. Secondly, it is a really powerful track, 100% energy throughout, just like Faint, it's very similar to Faint in that way which I described before. It has the classic Mike rapping, the classic Chester screaming and singing and it also has great lyrics. But it also has elements of A Thousand Suns and maybe some Minutes To Midnight thrown in too, so it really does encapsulate the sound of all 5 of their albums at that point, which is something the band said that Living Things did themselves even, and even wanted to do. It also has a little Living Things flavoring on it too, which yes is one of the 5 albums I mentioned. I personally think people would have lost their shit if they came back with this song as a lead single. Everyone would have been like, LP is back! It has that feeling and sound. Even if people didn't end up loving the rest of the album or whatever, it would have worked IMO. It could have had good promotion and a great music video, etc. Playing it live right off the bat would have worked, etc. It's one of the best sounding songs from the album that they played live, it never sucked like Lies Greed Misery and a few other songs from the album did live. I think it improved over time, by 2013, it was sounding fire, that Summer Sonic 2013 performance of it is amazing, and it sounded great in 2014 and 2017 in it's shortened forms, too, Rock Werchter 2017's performance is amazing, has great Chester screams for a 2017 show, but that's besides the point. I'm just pointing out how the band really NAILED this song, it's perfection. It's definitely in my top LP songs to as a fan, and there really is nothing from LP that I hate or even strongly dislike in terms of their main albums, so that's saying a lot, that's a lot of songs.

 

The Hunting Party: This was the biggest failure, IMO, out of all the lead singles for the band. I understand that the band chose Guilty All The Same specifically for a reason but it just didn't work for me. I love the song, that's not the problem. It's just not mainstream, both in terms of LP or radio in general. It's also a long song and doesn't have a structure that works good for radio, it also has a big guest feature, but not in a way that is good for radio either. It's too advanced for mainstream listeners, just like ATS was, it's basically the same thing. I have the same problem. Wastelands to me is the only song that really works as a lead single off of the album. It's not the heaviest song on the album by any means, but it has the formula. It has Mike's rapping, Chester's aggressive-ish singing, it has a proper little intro I guess, etc. It just feels like it could have been a lead single and I think the band really liked the song for some reason. It's a very underrated song actually. It could have done well I think. If it had been promoted properly unlike Guilty All The Same was, that was a disaster too. That Project Spark thing...man. What a disaster. If Wastelands had been the lead single, with a proper promotion and a proper music video, it could have done well I think, they could have released all of that immediately with the announcement of a big summer tour (Carnivores) and did that and I think they may have got #1 like they did with Burn It Down. Nothing else on the album is mainstream enough to work as a lead single for me, like I said. And Wastelands does represent the album actually, IMO, pretty well. I also keep thinking of that one promo image of the band from the photoshoot for The Hunting Party where they were all sitting in a worn down shack looking place, I think Wastelands totally would fit that image, and I think the lyrics also fit the whole mood/message of the album, too. So yeah, biggest missed opportunity to me.

 

One More Light: The whole cycle for One More Light was weird too to me. I like One More Light as an album, but I think it was promoted strangely. Once again, it didn't really have a proper single to me. Heavy was definitely the first single, yes, but the way it slowly leaked out to us news wise and the fact the video wasn't ready to go at the time of the release was weird. I'm also going to disagree with Mike on the quote where he said that Heavy best represented the sound of the album, I don't think it does actually. I think Heavy sounds different than a lot of the other songs. And I never was a fan of the guest feature either, I think they should have just kept it with Chester singing the whole song, it really gave it a totally different vibe and feel that took it away from sounding like it belonged with the rest of the songs for me when they added a female vocalist on it. Anyways, enough about Heavy. Battle Symphony would have been what I would have chose as lead single. I love the song so much. It has the pop feel of the album totally, but with a slight rock tinge, which is perfect for radio and for LP and for the fanbase to bridge them IMO from THP, etc. Has amazing vocals and lyrics. Could have had a great music video. It also encapsulates that whole summer time vibe that the album art gives off to me. It just works.

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39 minutes ago, Magma said:

I don't think any of the lead singles were the best call personally. This is a cool thread. I don't think the band even really chooses the lead singles, or at least they didn't until later albums, and even then, they had push from the label for different songs.

 

Hybrid Theory: One Step Closer is a great song, I love it, but I think In The End would have made a better first single. It had even more mainstream appeal to it and I think it would have worked just as well for the band, if not more. One Step Closer definitely got them more attention from the metal/nu-metal/hard rock/rock types of people but I don't think it really represents their full sound of the album, which a lead single should kind of do, but not even just sound wise, just in the style in general, you know? Again, I love One Step Closer, I'm just saying. It's actually probably my second or third favorite song off of the album.

Meteora: Faint always seemed like the best choice for the lead single here for me. I think Faint is amazing. Always have. Has 100% energy the entire time, had super mainstream appeal for what was popular at the time, etc. It's just flawless LP to me. It represents everything the band was at that time to me, in a much different way than One Step Closer did not, even though they're both heavy. Faint has the classic Mike rapping, the classic Chester screaming and singing, it has classic LP lyrics, etc. And the length is perfect. I like lead singles to not just represent the whole album, but also hit hard and good, right off the bat, but they don't ALWAYS have to be the most energetic or heavier songs, Faint just works here for that.

 

Minutes To Midnight: Now, this will be controversial. And What I've Done is literally my favorite LP song of all time. However, I don't think it needed to be made. I'm glad it was, obviously, because it is my favorite LP song. But Mike and the band created it because a few people close to them told them that they didn't feel like the album had a proper first single, or that the album was ''missing a piece'', I can't remember the interview, but I remember Mike saying the phrase of someone close to them telling them the album was missing a final piece and I liked that line a lot. But I personally don't think it was missing one. Across The Line was the last song to be cut from the main album according to Mike, so I'm assuming they cut that for What I've Done then, right? Across The Line is also amazing, the album would still have been a 10 out of 10 to me if it were still released with Across The Line. And I don't think Across The Line is the best choice. That goes to... wait for it... Leave Out All The Rest. Yes. An amazing, heartfelt, totally mainstream driven pop rock/alternative song. It's so good. I remember the band saying Rick told them he knew it would be a single from the beginning stages. I also remember Chester saying they worked really hard on the lyrics and the song in general to make sure it was something special. I feel like it encapsulates the Minutes To Midnight sound perfectly, too. Minutes To Midnight was all over the place, it had tons of styles, but one of the main styles was a alternative rock driven sound, with Leave Out All The Rest is, but it also has some light hip-hop flavoring with the beat, as well as some light electronic flavoring with the intro, it's perfect, since those genres are very lightly sprinkled on a few other of the Minutes To Midnight tracks. I think it would have blew up huge as a lead single. Just has that feel to it, and this is back when the promotion was top notch. I think Minutes To Midnight, which did very well, would have done even better. Of course, this may have meant the band not getting asked to be on the Transformers soundtrack, but who knows, maybe they still would have, since What I've Done was already written long before that anyways, it's not like it What I've Done was written for Transformers like New Divide was years later, it was just used similar to a lot of bands being used for soundtracks at the time. Maybe Leave Out All The Rest would have too. Mike also said as recently as 2017 that it's in his top favorite 3 LP songs and he also said in 2015 that it was the band's collective favorite from the album so I think it would have done the song more justice than it got being the final single off of the album, even though it still did pretty well actually, with Twilight an everything else.

 

A Thousand Suns: Nothing on A Thousand Suns is really radio friendly to me except for Waiting For The End. So I'd pick that one, naturally. I personally don't love the song but I know many fans do. I love the album but it's in the lower list of favorites from me on the album. I'm shocked The Catalyst did as good as it did, it's not mainstream at all to me. It's an amazing song, but yeah. Waiting For The End could have worked though, I think, I think people would have really loved it just as much, maybe more. The structure works, I would personally have cut the Mike intro somehow for the album to make it appeal more, but we all know LP didn't want to do that for ATS at all, which I like. So yeah. I remember Warner wanting the band to pick Meadowlands (Waiting For The End) or Iridescent as the single. I don't think Iridescent works as a single at all, personally, even the TF3 version they ended up putting out. I love Iridescent, don't get me wrong, it's beautiful. It just doesn't work as a single to me. It's too advanced for mainstream listeners, too special, much like the rest of the album. But Waiting For The End does work, even without making a version with a different intro like I said, it still works. And I know the fanbase and the band both love the song a lot as they have mentioned, I think it was also in Mike's top 3 as recent as 2017. As far as representing the album, I feel like it does and it doesn't, idk. But then again I don't think A Thousand Suns can be shown to the mainstream at all because it's too advanced for most people, so once again, it does work as a single. Like it doesn't represent the album to me personally but it does enough that it works for the mainstream, if that makes sense.

 

Living Things: Burn It Down did really well but I wouldn't have picked it. I would have picked Lost In The Echo, personally. For several reasons. It brings back the old LP style in a new way, for one. Secondly, it is a really powerful track, 100% energy throughout, just like Faint, it's very similar to Faint in that way which I described before. It has the classic Mike rapping, the classic Chester screaming and singing and it also has great lyrics. But it also has elements of A Thousand Suns and maybe some Minutes To Midnight thrown in too, so it really does encapsulate the sound of all 5 of their albums at that point, which is something the band said that Living Things did themselves even, and even wanted to do. It also has a little Living Things flavoring on it too, which yes is one of the 5 albums I mentioned. I personally think people would have lost their shit if they came back with this song as a lead single. Everyone would have been like, LP is back! It has that feeling and sound. Even if people didn't end up loving the rest of the album or whatever, it would have worked IMO. It could have had good promotion and a great music video, etc. Playing it live right off the bat would have worked, etc. It's one of the best sounding songs from the album that they played live, it never sucked like Lies Greed Misery and a few other songs from the album did live. I think it improved over time, by 2013, it was sounding fire, that Summer Sonic 2013 performance of it is amazing, and it sounded great in 2014 and 2017 in it's shortened forms, too, Rock Werchter 2017's performance is amazing, has great Chester screams for a 2017 show, but that's besides the point. I'm just pointing out how the band really NAILED this song, it's perfection. It's definitely in my top LP songs to as a fan, and there really is nothing from LP that I hate or even strongly dislike in terms of their main albums, so that's saying a lot, that's a lot of songs.

 

The Hunting Party: This was the biggest failure, IMO, out of all the lead singles for the band. I understand that the band chose Guilty All The Same specifically for a reason but it just didn't work for me. I love the song, that's not the problem. It's just not mainstream, both in terms of LP or radio in general. It's also a long song and doesn't have a structure that works good for radio, it also has a big guest feature, but not in a way that is good for radio either. It's too advanced for mainstream listeners, just like ATS was, it's basically the same thing. I have the same problem. Wastelands to me is the only song that really works as a lead single off of the album. It's not the heaviest song on the album by any means, but it has the formula. It has Mike's rapping, Chester's aggressive-ish singing, it has a proper little intro I guess, etc. It just feels like it could have been a lead single and I think the band really liked the song for some reason. It's a very underrated song actually. It could have done well I think. If it had been promoted properly unlike Guilty All The Same was, that was a disaster too. That Project Spark thing...man. What a disaster. If Wastelands had been the lead single, with a proper promotion and a proper music video, it could have done well I think, they could have released all of that immediately with the announcement of a big summer tour (Carnivores) and did that and I think they may have got #1 like they did with Burn It Down. Nothing else on the album is mainstream enough to work as a lead single for me, like I said. And Wastelands does represent the album actually, IMO, pretty well. I also keep thinking of that one promo image of the band from the photoshoot for The Hunting Party where they were all sitting in a worn down shack looking place, I think Wastelands totally would fit that image, and I think the lyrics also fit the whole mood/message of the album, too. So yeah, biggest missed opportunity to me.

 

One More Light: The whole cycle for One More Light was weird too to me. I like One More Light as an album, but I think it was promoted strangely. Once again, it didn't really have a proper single to me. Heavy was definitely the first single, yes, but the way it slowly leaked out to us news wise and the fact the video wasn't ready to go at the time of the release was weird. I'm also going to disagree with Mike on the quote where he said that Heavy best represented the sound of the album, I don't think it does actually. I think Heavy sounds different than a lot of the other songs. And I never was a fan of the guest feature either, I think they should have just kept it with Chester singing the whole song, it really gave it a totally different vibe and feel that took it away from sounding like it belonged with the rest of the songs for me when they added a female vocalist on it. Anyways, enough about Heavy. Battle Symphony would have been what I would have chose as lead single. I love the song so much. It has the pop feel of the album totally, but with a slight rock tinge, which is perfect for radio and for LP and for the fanbase to bridge them IMO from THP, etc. Has amazing vocals and lyrics. Could have had a great music video. It also encapsulates that whole summer time vibe that the album art gives off to me. It just works.

Really cool answer man😊 agree on many of the things you said, with obvious differences, Wastelands was a super cool pick! Love LOATR too. 

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Guilty All The Same was a great choice for fans like me. It certainly had me highly interested in the new raw sound and the length of it was exciting. But I totally agree that commercially there would have been way better choices, and that music video was a total disappointment. 

I would have probably gone with Rebellion as well, but might consider Final Masquerade too. FM imo had the most untapped potential of the record. It wouldn't have been a great picture of what the record would be, but the next singles would serve that purpose. All For Nothing could have been an exciting "familiar but lots of new" lead single as well. I think GATS just really felt rebellious to them and that was the excitement. That, and Rakim being a super exciting collaborator. 

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20 hours ago, YRQRM0 said:

Guilty All The Same was a great choice for fans like me. It certainly had me highly interested in the new raw sound and the length of it was exciting. But I totally agree that commercially there would have been way better choices, and that music video was a total disappointment. 

I would have probably gone with Rebellion as well, but might consider Final Masquerade too. FM imo had the most untapped potential of the record. It wouldn't have been a great picture of what the record would be, but the next singles would serve that purpose. All For Nothing could have been an exciting "familiar but lots of new" lead single as well. I think GATS just really felt rebellious to them and that was the excitement. That, and Rakim being a super exciting collaborator. 

Agree on this, in fact the idea of the thread is “best single choice in terms of balance between commercial and quality”, in fact in this case BID > The Catalyst in terms of choice as a single even tho Catalyst is a lot better than BID as a song in terms of just quality. 

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