Linkin Park’s ‘Hybrid Theory’: 10 Facts Only Superfans Would Know

If the Los Angeles band Xero didn’t lose vocalist Mark Wakefield in the late ’90s, they would’ve never met Chester Bennington — former frontman for the Phoenix rock group, Grey Daze.

The singer was introduced to Mike Shinoda, Brad Delson, Joe Hahn and Rob Bourdon through Zomba Music’s Jeff Blue, and they had an undeniable chemistry from the start. They created a musical amalgamation of rock and rap out of their varying influences, and a whole new era of hard music was underway.

Linkin Park’s groundbreaking debut album Hybrid Theory came out Oct. 24, 2000. Often regarded as one of the best rock albums of the 21st century, it catapulted the band into stardom and kicked off a long, successful career for them.

Though the untimely death of Bennington in 2017 would ultimately put the band’s future on hold, they’re celebrating the 20th anniversary of their masterpiece with a reissue of the album, which features a bunch of demos and B-sides from the recording sessions.

In honor of the album’s anniversary, here are 10 facts you may not have known about Hybrid Theory.

1. Hybrid Theory was originally the name of the band.
Shinoda and Delson’s band Xero went through a couple of lineup changes prior to meeting Bennington. Once they settled on him as their new vocalist, they changed their name to Hybrid Theory, to describe the musical fusion they created. They eventually had to change their name again because of a Welsh electronic group called Hybrid. Thus, they settled on using the phrase for the album’s title.

2. It was originally a demo tape.
Linkin Park originally recorded a demo tape based on some songs Shinoda had written with Wakefield. While some of the tracks were renamed, the majority of the songs from the demo ended up on the album, with the exception of “Carousel” and “Part of Me,” according to the Linkin Park Association.

3. They played over 40 showcases to label representatives.
Once the demo tape was prepared, the band played over 40 different showcases to label representatives. “We just kept pushing,” Bennington reflected to Metal Hammer. “Most bands probably try out in front of three labels, get rejected and give up. We played in front of 45 but our attitude was, ‘These guys are fucking stupid if they can’t see what we’ve got.’ We knew what we had and never doubted it.”

4. The label tried to get rid of Mike Shinoda.
During the Hybrid Theory sessions, Warner Bros. actually tried to get rid of Shinoda. In fact, their label reps held a private meeting with Bennington to try and persuade him to kick his co-vocalist out. “They wanted some fucking rapper from New York who no one knew to come and do vocals on the record,” Bennington raged to Metal Hammer.

“I just wanted to punch those idiots in the face because they couldn’t see that golden fucking teat of awesomeness that was right in front of them. Mike’s one of the most productive songwriters of our era, I think. God knows how many Number Ones we’ve had, but if he wasn’t in the band, we wouldn’t have had any of those!”

5. Some of the album’s aggression came from conflicts while recording.
Producer Don Gilmore was more familiar with producing rock bands, so he gave Linkin Park a lot of creative freedom when it came to the hip-hop portions of the songs. But when the label wasn’t happy with what they were hearing, it started to cause some tension in the studio.

“The power struggle became part of what making that album was,” Shinoda explained to Billboard. “Some of the intensity and frustration you hear on the album is specifically album-related.”

6. “A Place For My Head” was one of the earliest songs Shinoda had written.
Shinoda told Metal Hammer that “A Place For My Head” was written right after he’d graduated high school. “The very earliest incarnations of the songs from Hybrid Theory were written at my parents’ house when I had just finished high school,” he recalled. “A Place For My Head” was one of those first songs, but I wasn’t thinking of writing an album — I was barely considering starting a band!”

7. Chester Bennington wasn’t initially a fan of “In the End.”
Though it would eventually become the biggest single on the record, and one of their biggest songs overall — Bennington wasn’t initially a fan of “In the End.” “I was never a fan of ‘In The End’ and I didn’t even want it to be on the record, honestly,” he admitted to VMusic.

“How wrong could I have possibly been? I basically decided at that point I don’t know what the f— I’m talking about, so I leave that to other people who are actually talented at somehow picking songs that people are going to like the most.”

8. The “shut up” part of “One Step Closer” was inspired by Rage Against the Machine.
Shinoda revealed to Billboard that the part of “One Step Closer” where Bennington screams “Shut up when I’m talking to you” was inspired by Rage Against the Machine’s “Killing in the Name,” particularly the repeated “Fuck you / I won’t do what you tell me” line at the end.

“We wanted a part like that in one of our songs,” he said, pertaining to the Rage Against the Machine anthem. “And we were in the studio writing and re-writing ‘One Step Closer,’ and eventually we got so mad that Chester was just writing words down about how mad he was at Don for making us rewrite shit.”

9. “Crawling” and “With You” were the hardest songs for Bennington to sing.
In a chat with Linkin Park Underground, Bennington noted that “Crawling” and “With You” were the hardest songs for him to sing live. “I would say that ‘Crawling’ has caused me the most trouble live more than any other song,” he said. “Just because it’s that one long note the whole time, but I think probably ‘Crawling’ and probably ‘With You’ was hard when we used to play that one.”

10. It’s the best-selling debut album of the 21st century.
As of October of 2019, Hybrid Theory had sold over 32 million copies worldwide. It’s the best-selling debut album of the 21st century.

66 Rock + Metal Albums Turning 20 in 2020

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David Draiman: New Disturbed Material Will Be Blisteringly Angry

This year has been nothing short of an emotional rollercoaster for all of us, and it’s been an especially introspective time for artists who’ve been working on new music. David Draiman, as a result, guarantees that the new Disturbed material he writes will be “blisteringly angry.”

The frontman joined brothers Blake and Zach Bedsaul of the band Saul during a recent interview with Loudwire Nights, where the trio discussed their collaborative track “King of Misery.” While Draiman was very pleased with the experience he had working with the band and looks forward to doing more collaborations in the future, he’s also getting antsy about writing with Disturbed again.

“I can pretty much guarantee you it’s going to be blisteringly angry,” the vocalist described of the upcoming material he plans to create. “It’s coming, don’t worry.”

A lot of artists have released covers throughout the pandemic as a means to create and put out new content. Disturbed did drop a cover of Sting‘s “If I Ever Lose My Faith in You,” but it had actually been recorded during previous album sessions and left off the record.

“It was fun, I love doing that kind of stuff. And we’ll do it again at some point, but I’ll tell you — the thing I am dying to do is not a cover,” Draiman added. “I’m dying to sink my teeth into some new, original, angry, ferocious, brutal material. I’ve had enough.”

For now, the singer implores everyone to check out Saul’s new album Rise As Equalswhich is out today (Oct. 23). The band will be performing a livestream concert to celebrate its release tonight at 7:30pm EST — get tickets here.

To hear the full interview with Draiman and Saul, listen above.

Saul – “King of Misery”

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Sebastian Bach Leaves Interview After Halford Joke, Rob Responds

Rob Halford recently reacted to an interview with Sebastian Bach where the former Skid Row singer took offense to a joke on behalf of the Judas Priest legend. While on the Sex, Drugs & Rock n’ Roll Show, comedian Big Jay Oakerson made a joke about Halford, which caused Bach to prematurely exit his interview.

Bach was speaking about how he warms up his voice before a show, adding that he heard Halford didn’t warm up at all, which blew Bach’s mind. “His exercise is probably something gay he doesn’t wanna tell ya,” Oakerson joked. “You gotta gargle jizz, but I dunno how to tell you that, Sebastian.”

Bach didn’t appreciate the comic’s humor, saying, “Dude, could you not wreck this interview? Seriously, Rob Halford is a friend of mine so spare the comments. Maybe you should skip those kinds of comments.” Bach sat in disgust while the other hosts attempted to move past the awkwardness, but the singer simply exited the Zoom call.

Shortly after, Halford himself was on the Sex, Drugs & Rock n’ Roll Show and was asked to react to the situation with Bach. “Let me say three things: I did a Zoom with Sebastian the other day and it was typical Sebastian, he couldn’t get the Zoom to work and he had that thing where you put your face right up against the camera and you’re looking up his nostril, and he’s screaming at his wife and he’s screaming at his kids, and it’s complete and utter pandemonium, and we’re trying to make it connect, and it did connect. We had a great conversation. He’s a terrific guy, he’s so much fun,” Halford said.

“The second thing is, I don’t gargle, I swallow. And the third thing is, I’ve always wanted to be roasted at a comic roast, so if you guys, at some point, after this pandemic is over, if you can put me in that roast chair, I would love that.”

Halford is currently promoting his excellent memoir, Confess, in which he gets extremely candid about his life’s story for the first time ever. To grab a copy of the book, click here.

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Maynard James Keenan Had COVID-19, Still Dealing With Lung Damage

Tool / A Perfect Circle / Puscifer frontman Maynard James Keenan has revealed in a new interview that he recently contracted COVID-19. Though he beat the disease, the singer is still “dealing with the residual side effects,” including lung damage.

Johns Hopkins currently lists the mortality rate of COVID-19 in the United States at 2.8 percent, though the number could be lower considering not everyone infected has been tested. The highest observed COVID mortality rate is in Mexico — 10.3 percent — while the highest per-capita death rate has occurred in Peru, with 103.19 people dying from COVID-19 per 100,000 of the total population. The United States currently has the sixth-highest per-capita death rate in the world.

Keenan got COVID-19 in late February, before the pandemic was officially declared. “I kind of didn’t want to run around screaming it. But it’s real. And there’s after-effects,” Keenan shared with AZ Central. “I had to go through some major medications to undo the residual effects. Still coughing. There’s still lung damage.”

When asked if he’s currently feeling alright, Keenan answered, “Well no. I still have the cough. Every other day, I have these coughing fits because my lungs are still damaged at the tips. And I just got over the inflammation that was going on with my wrist and hands. I had an autoimmune attack on my system in the form of, like, a rheumatoid arthritis. Basically, from what I understand, it attacks weird spots and it’s random. So that’s what I got. That was my prize.”

As for the subject of wearing a mask to prevent the spread of COVID, Maynard finds the political polarization of the virus “ridiculous.” “It’s just an absurdity. We wear seatbelts. We don’t smoke in trains, planes or taxis anymore, or even restaurants. There’s reasons for those things. I don’t know. I feel like there’s this twist on the idea of personal freedom where somehow freedom is you being able to walk into anybody’s house and take a dump on their meal or shout ugly things at their grandma. That’s not what freedom is.”

“Freedom is the ability to pursue your lifestyle, pursue what you want to do for your family, for your future, what education you want to get. And with that freedom comes a responsibility to look out for yourself, for your neighbor, for your family, for everybody. So there are some compromises that come along with freedom. I’m not sure why that’s so difficult to grasp.”

Puscifer will release their newest album, Existential Reckoning, on Oct. 30. Click here to pre-order the album. (As Amazon affiliates, we earn on qualifying purchases)

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Brian Johnson: Chris Slade Had to Have Known He Wasn’t in AC/DC

Rock ‘n’ roll powerhouse AC/DC are back and better than ever with their new song “Shot in the Dark.” In anticipation of their upcoming studio album Power Upfrontman Brian Johnson and bassist Cliff Williams spoke with Loudwire Nights about their pre-pandemic rehearsals, former drummer Chris Slade and more.

“Who would’ve thunk?” Johnson laughed, regarding the band’s reunion. “But here we are, and we’re pretty proud of it. Three years ago, it might not have been possible. But the bond in the band is so strong that, some may say it’s inevitable, but the thing is we’re just very happy that we’re here now.”

Three years ago, it definitely didn’t seem possible. The middle of AC/DC’s Rock or Bust tour saw Johnson step down as frontman because he risked losing his hearing. Guns N’ RosesAxl Rose offered his voice so they could carry out the rest of the tour, and then Williams decided that run would be his last.

The following year, Angus Young lost both of his brothers — George Young, who produced many of the band’s albums, and Malcolm Young within a few weeks of each other.

“The opportunity to be with the guys again and get that feeling of playing together, I couldn’t pass it up,” Williams chimed in.

Photos started leaking of Angus and Stevie Young, Johnson and Phill Rudd standing outside of a studio in Vancouver in late 2018, creating speculation that the band were working on a new album together again.

Two years later, they’ve officially announced that Power Up is on the way, which you can pre-order now. But with a new album begs the question — are they going to tour behind it when it is safe to do so, despite Johnson’s hearing?

“Just before all this [COVID-19] stuff hit, we all gathered in Holland and we rehearsed for about two-and-a-half to three weeks,” Johnson said. “We powered it up to make sure that everything was going well, I had these new fantastic… technology is fantastic, things have come on and I’ve had this new equipment, which is tremendous.”

“And off we went, and it was just fantastic, with the five of us in there just letting it fly, just letting it scream. Once again, there was electricity in the room. There was such a vibe and we just knew it had to be,” the vocalist continued. “And we got stopped dead in our tracks.”

Chris Slade, who played a four-album stint in AC/DC in the early ’90s and also filled in for Rudd on the Rock or Bust tour, was apparently unaware of the reunion up until recently. As of this past August, he claimed that he was still the band’s drummer, to his knowledge. However, Rudd was announced as the drummer on the album.

“That’s the first I’ve heard of this, I would imagine Chris would’ve known,” Johnson said. “Chris stood in for Phil very admirably, did a great job. But as you know, Phil got himself into some trouble. But he’s AC/DC’s drummer, really, he always has been.”

To hear more about the album, including Malcolm Young’s songwriting contributions and how the members felt when their secret studio sessions were uncovered, listen to the full interview above.

AC/DC: A Photo Timeline of Their Legendary Career

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Lzzy Hale Explains How Pandemic Will Impact Next Halestorm Album

2020 has been unpredictable and downright strange for everyone, but especially musicians, who are used to releasing music and hitting the road to play it. It’s certainly strange for a band like Halestorm, who’ve spent the majority of their career touring. Lzzy Hale recently chatted with Loudwire Nights about how the pandemic is going to have an impact on the band’s next album.

The frontwoman noted that everything that has been going on in the world around her — the pandemic, social and political issues, feelings of isolation and the emptiness of not being able to tour — will all work its way into the new music somehow.

“I think a lot of these things end up seeping into my core,” she admitted. “I’ve always written from a core element of my truth. But by being literally in my home studio every single day… by being here and just doing everything purely for me. Because there’s no timeline, there’s no timeline for when the record’s gonna be done. There’s no timeline for, even if the record was done, when are we gonna tour on it?”

The combination of isolation and no added pressure to have a schedule results in the singer being able to write as clearheaded and true to how she’s feeling as ever, she added.

“I’m really excited because I feel like I’ve almost gone back to when I was a teenager,” Hale continued. “That was such a freeing time because I didn’t know anything about the business… so all I was doing was writing from whatever was in my head and my place of truth.”

Until we hear new music from Halestorm and are able to see them on the road again, you can watch Hale host the upcoming new season of AXS TV’s A Year in Musicwhich airs on Sunday, Oct. 4. For more details on the show and the vocalist’s experience writing scripts, listen to the full interview above.

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Deftones’ Chino Moreno Reveals Recurring Anxiety-Filled Dream

New music has been one of the only positive things people have had to look forward to throughout the coronavirus pandemic. Lucky for rock and metal fans, Deftones‘ new album Ohms is out today (Sept. 25). Frontman Chino Moreno recently hopped on a call with Loudwire Nights‘ Toni Gonzalez to discuss the album, and during the conversation, he revealed an anxiety-filled dream that he’s had several times.

“It’s always like, we’re supposed to be onstage or whatever, and I’m backstage looking for stuff, and I can’t find something — whatever it may be. It’s like one of my shoes or something that I need to go onstage with, and I can’t find it,” the vocalist described.

“I’m like panicking because the band’s already onstage and they already start playing the songs, and it’s literally like they play a couple of songs without any vocals to it. And I can kind of hear people in the crowd going, ‘Where’s Chino?’ And I’m backstage, panicking, still looking for something. I’ve had that dream actually a few times.”

While he doesn’t quite know the meaning behind that sort of dream, he does believe that Ohms will be relative to a lot of listeners in these current times. Though written prior to the pandemic, he thinks it mirrors how a lot of people have been feeling throughout it.

“I’d rather not just sum up what you should feel when you hear it, but I definitely think it’s an emotional record,” he explained. “It was made pre-pandemic, but I really feel like there’s a lot of stuff on it that really, really mirrors kind of what a lot of people I think are going through right now as far as just dealing with all this isolation and lack of connection. I feel like that rears its head a few times with this batch of songs.”

Speaking of isolation, not only are Deftones currently unable to tour in support of Ohms, but Moreno revealed that the band haven’t even seen each other in six months. “It’s so weird right now that we have a new record coming out, and I haven’t even seen these guys in almost half of a year.”

To hear more about the songwriting process for Ohms, the special, reworked 20th edition of White Pony titled Black Stallion and more, listen to the full interview above.

The 66 Best Rock Albums of the Decade: 2010-2019

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Chris Cornell’s Daughter Feels ‘Moral Obligation’ to Help People

In the age of social media and growing an individual “brand,” people can go one of two ways — use their following to advertise for companies and make money or spread awareness for the greater good. Chris Cornell‘s daughter, Lily Cornell Silver, is aware of her platform, and she feels a “moral obligation” to use it to help people.

Silver launched her online talk-series Mind Wide Open on July 20, which would’ve been her father’s 56th birthday. Created both in his honor and as a result of the global pandemic, Silver has had guests from mental health experts to Duff McKagan and Eddie Vedder join her for conversations on the topic.

Silver is aware that her relation to Cornell and close connections with members of bands such as Pearl Jam and Alice in Chains helps give her the upper hand when it comes to recruiting contenders for the show. She and one of Vedder’s daughters Olivia each have their own show now because of this.

“We were born with a platform handed to us on a silver platter, and it’s like, ‘how are we gonna use that?” Silver described to Loudwire Nights. “We both have talked about how we feel kind of like a moral obligation. How can I just sit here with this platform and use it to post bikini pics? We have to use this to spread some sort of awareness or share our knowledge.”

“[Mental health] resources and access to resources are so, so limited,” she continued. “So I wanted to create some sort of platform where it’s completely free, completely accessible, runs across multiple platforms, where I can have high-profile people like Ed or Duff, and have mental health professionals… be able to share the information and their wealth of knowledge in a way that allows anybody to access it.”

Listen to the full interview above.

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Top 90 Hard Rock + Metal Albums of the ’90s

The ’90s were one of the most fascinating decades in rock and metal, widening the gap between the two genres and putting fans on opposing sides, either clinging to their denim patch vests or trading them in for flannel shirts. Grunge signaled the death of metal supremacy that put a stranglehold on heavy music in the prior decade, but the underground kept the metal going strong while rock acts were assuming their role on the world’s biggest stages.

Kurt Cobain became the voice of a generation in Nirvana, while Dave Grohl steamrolled the success into the Foo Fighters following Cobain’s tragic death. Meanwhile, Texas groovehounds Pantera were flying the banner for heavy metal, keeping the genre in the mainstream. In the meantime, a new genre called nu-metal was emerging, taking the rhythmic approach of metal even further and fusing it with rap influences. Below the surface, extreme genres like black and death metal were thriving, scaring parents, exciting kids and netting headlines rife with controversy.

We started with a list of nearly 300 albums to contend with and narrowed it down to the 90 Best Hard Rock + Metal Albums of the 1990s. Take a trip down this diametric decade of music and see which album is No. 1 in the gallery below!

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Mike Protich Talks Transition from Red Sun Rising to the Violent

Earlier this year, an anonymous new trio, the Violent, released a song called “Fly on the Wall.” The members were eventually revealed to be Mike Protich, Dave McGarry and Pat Gerasia — formerly of Red Sun Rising. Protich recently caught up with Loudwire Nights to explain the transition from one band to the next.

Red Sun Rising announced that they were going on an indefinite hiatus in February of this year, just a few months prior to the debut of the Violent. Protich acknowledged the significance of the work his previous band did together and is very proud of it, but is now looking forward to what the future has in store for this new project.

Without getting into too much specific detail, the vocalist compared the decision for Red Sun Rising to go on hiatus to a divorce. “That happens in real relationships, and a band is no different,” he said. “Especially when you get a lot of creative minds together, those creative minds start to wander and explore other things. And when they want those other things and the other person doesn’t, then you have to be like, ‘Well we’re kind of at a standstill here.'”

The Violent chose to debut their first song anonymously because they didn’t want people to compare it to anything Red Sun Rising had done before. “We just wanted people to like it for what it is and see what kind of people naturally got aboard because they just liked what they heard,” Protich explained.

The singer doesn’t completely rule out the idea of Red Sun Rising ever working together again, because you “never know,” but he doesn’t see it happening anytime in the foreseeable future. For now, fans both old and new can look forward to hearing some other sounds and influences that hadn’t been explored by Red Sun Rising in the Violent’s music.

For more details surrounding the Violent’s upcoming plans, listen to the full interview above.

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Oli Sykes: Yungblud Is a ‘New Breed of Rockstar’

Bring Me the Horizon have just dropped a new song called “Obey” from their upcoming series of albums Post Human, and it features rising rocker Yungblud. BMTH Frontman Oli Sykes and Yungblud both discussed what it was like working with each other in an interview with Loudwire Nights, and Sykes referred to his new collaborative partner as a “new breed of rockstar.”

Yungblud is from a part of England where he describes people as being “quite set in their ways” — meaning people weren’t exactly accepting of him dressing in skirts and wearing nail polish. Then he discovered Bring Me’s 2008 album Suicide Season. 

“It just got my rage out… it kind of hit a nerve,” he said. “I was like, ‘These lads are where I’m from and they’re kind of unconditionally themselves and have been celebrated for it so I’m gonna do that one day.'”

Little did he realize that come 2020, Bring Me the Horizon would write a song that seemed the perfect fit for him to collaborate on.

“There was an energy to it where it felt heavy but then had some slight brit-pop influences, which I hear in Yungblud’s music,” Sykes explained of their decision to recruit Yungblud for the track. They wanted the upcoming albums to have a “harder edge” than their 2019 release amo.

“With our last record, we kind of looked outside the scene for people to collaborate with and bring something new to the table, and with this record we wanted to have people that reflect the scene at the moment and still not choose obvious people that you would expect us to work with,” Sykes continued. “I really like what Yungblud’s doing. I love his energy and I think he’s reflective of a new breed of rock star.”

“We’re honored, to be honest,” he admitted. Check out “Obey” below.

Bring Me the Horizon, on the other hand, didn’t necessarily have a mentor-like artist that wanted to help and support them, according to the frontman. “Everyone fucking hated us,” he said laughing. “We were a very polarizing band. I remember Killswitch Engage took us out early on, but I don’t think it was by choice.”

To hear more about the rockers’ experiences creating music during a global pandemic and more, listen to the full interview above.

Bring Me the Horizon With Yungblud, “Obey”

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