Music / Linkin Park

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/linkinpark.jpg
Left to right: Brad Delson, Mike Shinoda, Mr. Hahn, Chester Bennington, Rob Bourdon, Phoenix
"I tried so hard, and got so far,
but in the end, it doesn't even matter.
I had to fall to lose it all,
but in the end, it doesn't even matter."
"In The End"

An Alternative Rock band from Agoura Hills, California. Since their formation in 1996, the band has sold more than fifty million albums and won two Grammy Awards. They achieved mainstream success in 2000 with their debut album Hybrid Theory, and continued it with the remix album Reanimation, the follow-up Meteora, and their collaboration with rapper Jay-Z, Collision Course.

Linkin Park had a steady start by blending the sounds of Nu Metal, Rap, and Rock all together, eventually ditching the nu metal when it became a Dead Horse Genre and bringing in elements of Alternative Rock, Electronic Music, and other influences (though with The Hunting Party, they returned to their pre-Nu Metal roots). While they remain one of the most popular current rock acts, there are also others that aren't keen on all the screaming and the lyrics, leading to the common stereotype of Linkin Park being the band du jour of "whiny, angsty teenagers with no good reason to be" the world over. This is most reflected in forum jokes and memes made about the band, almost always referring to songs from Hybrid Theory and Meteora; said memes usually involve people who 'tried so hard and got so far, but in the end it didn't even matter', or CRAWWWLLLLING IN MY SKINNNNNNNNNNNN.

Their fanbase has been split since the release of Minutes to Midnight over bringing new influences into their sound. This hasn't deterred the band any from continuing to do what they want with their music, leading to reactions that are more predictable in their hysteria than whatever Linkin Park chooses to put out next.

While their music has been featured in dozens of films, Linkin Park has a particularly strong association with the Transformers Film Series. In addition to providing singles for the first three movies and the video game Rise of the Dark Spark, they collaborated with Steve Jablonsky and Hans Zimmer on the score for Revenge of the Fallen.

They are a popular music source for anime music videos, inevitably featuring shonen series like Dragon Ball Z (and occasionally not-so-shonen series, namely Neon Genesis Evangelion.)

On July 20, 2017, lead singer Chester Bennington committed suicide, shortly before the band was to start their North American tour. Following his death, the remaining members of Linkin Park did their first performance without Bennington at a tribute concert for him on October 27, with guest performances and guest vocals from members of Yellowcard, blink-182, Korn, Avenged Sevenfold, System of a Down, Echosmith, Bush, No Doubt, A Day to Remember, Bring Me the Horizon and Sum 41, as well as Kiiara, Julia Michaels, Zedd, Alanis Morissette, Machine Gun Kelly, Steve Aoki, Bebe Rexha... and of course, the fans.

By Mike Shinoda's own confession, the future of the band is currently uncertain.

Related Acts:

Members:
  • Chester Bennington: Lead singer and metal screamer. Could play guitar when needed. Had a side project named Dead by Sunrise (in collaboration with the members of Julien K); also was the lead singer for Stone Temple Pilots from 2013 until 2015. Died in 2017.
  • Mike Shinoda: Co-founder, emcee, singer, rapper, pianist, second guitarist, graphic designer, producer, painter, and blogger. Used to playing several instruments during the same song. Has a side project named Fort Minor.
  • Brad Delson: Co-founder, lead guitarist and lead afro. Occasionally plays the keyboard.
  • Rob Bourdon: The drummer, but can also play piano when the band is writing new songs.
  • Joe "Mr." Hahn: The DJ, synths and samples guy who also directs their music videos. Owns an art shop in Los Angeles called SURU.
  • Dave "Phoenix" Farrell: The bassist and backing singer. Nicknamed in reference to the film Mystery Men, after a fan thought his real name was boring. Also does string arrangements.

Discography:

Linkin Park provides examples of:

    open/close all folders 

    Tropes A to F 
  • Adult Fear: The music video for "Lost in the Echo" heavily implies the reuniting with loved ones who disappeared for many years.
  • Album Filler: Mike Shinoda has said that "Runaway" was included on Hybrid Theory for this reason. They had given up on the song and wrote "One Step Closer" out of frustration. Because they couldn't use the planned song "She Couldn't" for sample reasons, nor did they want to include the re-recorded "High Voltage," they decided to go back to the Xero demo Stick N Move and re-used some of the melody lines to finish off "Runaway". The band regard "Runaway" as the worst song they ever wrote, although fans tend to disagree. At times they've said they don't want to play it live again, but did so anyway.
    • Lampshaded by Black Thought on "X-Ecutioner Style."
  • Album Title Drop: "The Requiem" and "The Catalyst" for A Thousand Suns.
    • Probably would have counted as Bookends if not for "The Messenger."
  • All for Nothing:
    • The second song of The Hunting Party.
    • "In the End" makes it explicit:
      I tried so hard, and got so far, but in the end, it doesn't even matter.
  • All Just a Dream: The video for "Somewhere I Belong."
  • Always with You: The last line in the chorus for "Leave Out All The Rest".
    Keep me in your memory,
    leave out all the rest…
  • Ambiguously Jewish: While not presenting any obvious identifiers as being so, drummer Rob Bourdon is in fact Jewish. Lead guitarist Brad Delson, however, not so ambiguous
  • And I Must Scream: The alien commander who gets enveloped by the blue tentacles at the end of the "Pts.OF.Athrty" music video.
  • Animated Music Video: "Breaking the Habit," "Pts.OF.Athrty," "FRGT/10," and "Guilty All the Same." They've become the go-to source for any Anime/Animated Music Video collage on YouTube, alongside Three Days Grace.
  • Animesque: The music video for "Breaking the Habit," though the "-esque" is questionable, as it was produced by Kazuto Nakazawa.
  • Ascended Extra: Mike Shinoda was the founder and original producer of the band, and was its primary vocalist during the underground years; Chester Bennington, despite being the last member to join, is now popularly recognized as having been the frontman. However, the songs are primarily written around Shinoda's programming and continue to be so.
  • Asian and Nerdy: Mike and Joe.
  • Atomic F-Bomb: Thanks to Chester's Metal Scream, the bridge of "Given Up" gets this treatment.
    PUT ME OUT OF MY FUCKING MISERYYYYYYYY!
  • Audience Participation Song: During live performances of "Bleed It Out", there's a chance of Chester and Mike initiating a singing contest between each other with the audience's help, such as on Road to Revolution. The audience is also encouraged to sing with Chester on "In the End."
  • Awesome Mc Coolname: Mike Shinoda. Just SOUNDS badass.
  • Bar Brawl: One depicted backwards in the "Bleed It Out" video.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Never, ever tell a single member of the band that you want them to go back to their "old" style or do any new ones. Chester infamously told these critics to "stab [themselves] in the face" in one of his last interviews. "When They Come for Me" makes this perfectly clear.
    • Mike doesn't like the rumors that the band was fabricated by the record label. The Fort Minor song "Get Me Gone" goes into detail about how he and the band had to fight tooth and nail to keep him in, and that rumor that the label started was the last straw.
  • Big "NO!": The chorus of "Blackout". Emphasis on BIG.
    • The bridge of "Faint" starts with one.
    • "The Catalyst" has four, but they're somewhat more subdued than the other examples.
  • Big "SHUT UP!": The bridge of "One Step Closer."
  • Bilingual Bonus: Two of them on A Thousand Suns.
    • In "Jornada del Muerto", Mike sings, "Mochiagete tokihanashite" — Japanese for 'Lift me up, let me go.' The English translation appears on "The Catalyst" several songs later.
    • In the prelude "Empty Spaces" and in the bridge of "When They Come for Me", Brad can be heard yelling into a bullhorn in Spanish: "¡Escúchenme, toda la gente! ¡Presten atención! ¡Escúchenme ahora mismo!"
      All you people, listen to me! Pay attention! Listen to me now!
  • Bittersweet Ending: A Thousand Suns, which takes place during a nuclear war, has "The Messenger", a would-be Surprisingly Gentle Song if not for the Metal Screaming.
    When life leaves us blind, love keeps us kind…
  • Black Sheep: The song "Nobody's Listening" from Meteora, with its creepy Japanese flute, Hip-Hop meets Doom Metal chorus, and seemingly random placing on the album. It's not surprising to know that the song was the last recorded and added to the album at the last minute. It would be re-recorded for Shinoda's solo project Fort Minor under the title Nobody's Listening (Green Lantern Remix), where it fit slightly better.
  • Boastful Rap: "Step Up," "High Voltage," "When They Come for Me," "I Have Not Begun," and if Fort Minor is to be counted, "Remember the Name."
  • Bookends:
    • "Krwlng", the last track of the remix album "Reanimation" starts with the same violin in "Intro," the intro of the album.
    • The music video for "Castle of Glass" begins with a military man in uniform delivering word to a woman and her son that their husband/father has died in the line of duty. It ends with the boy, now a grown man and in the military himself, doing the same for a young girl.
  • B.S.O.D. Song: Their entire body of work are essentially songs dealing with angst and depression.
  • Call-Back:
    • "When They Come for Me" has a few, being a boastful rap that calls to mind the band's earlier hip-hop tracks "Reading My Eyes," "Step Up," and "High Voltage." He references "Points Of Authority" by saying he's not the same guy that 'forfeit the game'. He also refers to the band's first album "Hybrid Theory" in the line "Once you have a theory of how the thing works, everybody wants the next thing to be just like the first." The vocals towards the end of the song are quite similar to those of the intro to the band's song "Carousel". The theme of the song is that Shinoda takes his own path and doesn't care what people say, and they can either keep up with him or be stuck behind.
    • It may be coincidental, but Living Things fifth track is "I'll Be Gone". The album straight before that, A Thousand Suns, had "When They Come For Me", which was also the fifth track. And what are some of the lyrics from the song "When They Come For Me"?
      Oh, when they come for me, come for me, I'll be gone.
  • The Cameo: Frontman Chester Bennington had small roles in the movies Crank, Crank: High Voltage, and Saw 3D.
  • Camping a Crapper: The climax of the "Heavy" music video shows Chester being attacked by a physical representation of his inner demons inside a wash room (in front of a mirror even, thus making it a literal and figurative example of a Mirror Match).
  • Careful with That Axe: A Chester Bennington specialty. Good lord that man could belt it out.
    • Especially "Given Up". Not many people could hold a one-breath, two-note and 17-seconds long scream.
  • Chewing the Scenery:
    • "Blackout" also counts. "FUCK IT, ARE YOU LISTENING?!"
      • BLACKOUT!!! BLOOD IN YOUR EYE!!!
    • "The Messenger." Metal screaming doesn't exactly go well with an acoustic number.
    • WHERE OCEANS BLEED INTO THE SKYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY
    • I'VE! BECOME SO NUMB! I CAN'T FEEL! YOU! THERE!
    • "Keys to the Kingdom," "War," "Mark the Graves," "A Line in the Sand."
    • I WANNA SEE YOU CHOKE ON YOUR LIES! SWALLOW UP YOUR GREED! SUFFER ALL ALONE IN YOUR MISERY!
      • YOU DID IT TO YOURSELLLLLLLLF!
    • Victimized is one of the harshest ones, if not THE harshest one: VICTIMIZED! VICTIMIZED! NEVER AGAIN! VICTIMIZED!
  • Clip Show: The music videos for both "Points of Authority", "Talking to Myself", and "One More Light" feature the band in some of their tours/concerts. "Kyur4 Th Ich" is a montage of breakdancing competitions.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: Mike and especially Chester swear like children out of their parents' earshot. Early in their career, the band made a point to avoid swearing on the first two albums, but with Minutes to Midnight and A Thousand Suns, they resigned themselves to getting parental advisory labels.
    • The exact profanity count for each album:
      • Minutes to Midnight has eight uses of 'fuck': four on "Given Up", two in "Bleed It Out", and two in "Hands Held High".
      • A Thousand Suns has eight fuck (or fuck-related) words: seven motherfuckers on "When They Come for Me", and one 'fuck' in "Blackout." "Wretches and Kings" features three uses of 'shit'.
      • The Hunting Party features five uses of 'fuck': four on "Keys to the Kingdom"; one on "All for Nothing", which also drops two 'shit's in the outro.
      • Even One More Light sneaks in one 'fucking' in "Heavy", courtesy of Kiiara.
  • Combat Tentacles: In the animated music video for "Pts.OF.Athrty", an alien race invades a highly technified human outpost defended by robotic soldiers. When the aliens breach the perimeter, the humans activate a machine that causes an entire underground installation to rise up out of the ground and destroy the enemy forces with energy tentacles.
  • Concept Album: A Thousand Suns, about war, corruption and the atom bomb.
  • Concept Video: The videos that aren't Dress Rehearsal/Performance Videos.
  • Conflict Killer: The Kid Hero of the "From The Inside" music video unleashes his Psychic Powers to halt both the State Sec and La Résistance who are violently fighting each other.
  • Cool Hat:
    • Not a hat per se, but Delson's headphones count for being both unique and one of his most recognizable features, aside from his Jewfro.
    • More traditionally, Phoenix likes to rock a sweet fedora during concerts.
    • Chester took to wearing either a beanie or a porkpie hat in media appearances in his later years.
  • Cosmic Plaything: It was an achievement for Chester to go a whole year without a major injury while on tour – he'd got bitten by a recluse spider, broke his wrist in the middle of a show, broke his ankle while playing basketball, injured his back, had surgeries because of mysterious illnesses, became allergic to his own sweat, had a tennis racquet go through his lip after he hit himself in the face with it while playing, and he ripped off one of his nipples just by getting in the shower. He got injured/ill so frequently he once wished to be put in a bubble.
    Chester: Another tour… another trip to the emergency room.
  • Cover Version: In addition to covering "Wish" by Nine Inch Nails and Adele's "Rolling in the Deep," they've also been known to play "Sweet Child o' Mine" and "My Own Summer."
  • Credits Gag: Usually with Joe in some of the liner notes for their albums:
    • For A Thousand Suns: "Thank you all! Love, Joe."
    • For Living Things: "Joe would like to thank whoever invented hot sauce. Also, to Heidi."
  • Dark Reprise: "Fallout" from A Thousand Suns is this to the album's third (technically first when not counting the preludes) track "Burning in the Skies," which features an ominous vocoded version of the chorus lyrics and serving as the prelude to "The Catalyst."
  • Demoted to Extra:
    • Joe "Mr. Hahn" Hahn was a key part of the band's appeal in the Hybrid Theory days, but since those days has stayed in the background. Part of the reason is his DJ scratching was a big thing in the Nu Metal days, but has gone out of fashion, and the band's musical style has generally moved to push it into the background as well. Hahn himself appears to have become more reclusive than he was, so this may be an intentional thing.
    • Mike Shinoda during Minutes to Midnight. Compared to Hybrid Theory and Meteora, where him and Chester were a near-equal Vocal Tag Team, his rapping there was largely replaced by guitars. Only three songs on the album ("Bleed It Out," "Hands Held High," and "In Between") featured Shinoda's rapping, and only "Bleed It Out" featured their once-signature Vocal Tag Team style. The rest was pure Arena Rock sung by Chester. He has been more prominent in the albums since, however.
    • Brad, Rob and Dave on One More Light, which was one of the main criticisms of that album.
  • Determinator: Chester once insisted on finishing a show after mis-timing a jump and breaking his wrist three songs in. During a tour several years later, he broke his ankle playing basketball; despite his attempts to keep performing, the injury was severe enough that the band was forced to cancel the rest of the tour. On top of all that, he struggled with drug addiction until 2006, bouts of alcoholism, and severe depression, and still kept going – until the latter got the better of him in 2017.
    • Bassist Phoenix played an entire show even after breaking his hand earlier in the tour.
  • Deliberately Monochrome: The band's behind-the-scenes videos, LPTV, were filmed in black-and-white during the A Thousand Suns touring cycle to reflect the theme of that album.
  • Digital Piracy Is Evil: Averted. Members of the band have gone on record saying they really don't care if their songs are downloaded. When Minutes to Midnight was leaked, their only response was to advise people to listen to the tracks in order and ask that they buy the album anyway for all the non-musical stuff they put into it. Especially notable considering that their label is Warner, of all companies. The band themselves downloaded the Xero demo tape from a fansite so that they could relearn "Reading My Eyes" and play it live. In addition Shinoda acknowledged that "She Couldn't" leaked and whilst he said he couldn't legally talk about it, 'didn't' try to take the links down.
    • During the band's 2001 Rock am Ring set, Mike told the crowd they can download "High Voltage" from Napster if they don't have it.
    • Played straight by the band's label, Warner. Every time a copy of A Thousand Suns was sent to a music journalist for reviewing purposes, a cop was shipped along with it to make sure nothing leaked. Not that it stopped the album from being leaked anyway.
  • Doomsday Clock: Minutes to Midnight
  • Dress Rehearsal Video: About half of their videos.
  • Drugs Are Bad: The point of both "Crawling" (its Reanimation remix, "Krwlng" included) and "Breaking the Habit".
  • Due to the Dead:
    • The music video for "One More Light" is dedicated to Chester.
    Chester,
    You ignited a flame of passion,
    laughter & courage in our hearts forever.
    We miss you, brother.
    - Joe, Mike, Brad, Dave & Rob.
    • The "Linkin Park & Friends Celebrate Life in Honor of Chester Bennington" concert organized by the aforementioned people is Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
  • Dystopia: Both the "From the Inside" and "Shadow of the Day" videos feature Chester taking an Unflinching Walk through violent protests. Joining him in "From the Inside" are Mike and Chester's son Jaime.
  • Emo Teen: The protagonist of the music video for "Numb". She's an outcast both at home and at school, and her only outlet is her artworks...
  • Epic Rocking: "A Line in the Sand" and "The Little Things Give You Away" each clock in at about six and a half minutes. "Krwling", "1stp Klosr" and "The Catalyst" come close to that.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: "Burn It Down".
    You told me yes,
    you held me high,
    and I believed when you told that lie.
    I played soldier,
    you played king.
    You struck me down when I kissed that ring.
    You lost that right
    to hold that crown.
    I built you up, but you let me down.
    So when you fall,
    I'll take my turn.
  • Fading into the Next Song: The only album that doesn't use this is Hybrid Theory. However, the version of "High Voltage" cut from the album (included on the "One Step Closer" single) was supposed to segue in from "Cure for the Itch"; remains of the former can be heard in the latter. It was probably cut because it had already appeared in a different version on the Hybrid Theory EP.
    • Various special editions of Hybrid Theory feature this version of "High Voltage" as a bonus track, but no attempt was made to restore the original segue.
  • Fake Band:
    Baby, if you were my Iraq / I'd never pull out of you if you know what I mean.
  • Fanservice: Chester was known for being shirtless about 40% of the time, performing or otherwise. The behind-the-scenes video for Minutes To Midnight features him in nothing but his underwear, covered in sweat, after spending hours in a hot recording booth. He's about as clothed for the first half of the "Shadow of the Day" music video. As for the rest of the band, fans will have to scour the behind-the-scenes videos on the group's website for even a hint of fanservice from the other five members.
  • Fiery Redhead: Shinoda, but only in the cover for Hybrid Theory. He reverted to black hair by 2001.
  • Five-Man Band:
  • Foreshadowing:
    • "The Requiem", the opening track from A Thousand Suns, is an ambient, brooding version of "The Catalyst", the album's penultimate track, which also features the Album Title Drop. It also contains the piano track from "Waiting for the End" and the heartbeat-sonar ping combo sound heard in the start of "Jornada del Muerto". Shinoda has said that the track contains elements from every other song on the album.
    • A more subtle version comes in the track "Jornada del Muerto", which features Mike singing "Lift me up, let me go" in Japanese.
  • Four-Star Badass: Invoked by Mike as a form of Badass Boast in "All for Nothing".
    And no, I'm not your soldier; I'm not taking any orders
    I'm a Five-Star General, infantry controller

    Tropes G to O 
  • Genre Shift: Originally started as Nu Metal outfit, before gradually shifting to the more experimental side of Alternative Rock.
  • Genre Roulette: Minutes to Midnight. If you need further proof, look at its track order. Within the span of three songs, you'll hear a political hip-hop song featuring a choir and piano, one of the heaviest songs the band ever wrote with Chester coming close to snarling most of the lyrics, and a light alternative ballad about a funeral.
  • Gray Rain of Depression: Happens during the "In the End" music video, specifically during the song's bridge ("I PUT MY TRUST IN YOU...").
  • Grief Song: Several, and the band achieved its legendary status for doing songs about dealing with angst and depression. But a special example is "Looking for an Answer", a song Mike wrote (and sang) about how he felt during the aftermath of Chester's suicide.
  • The Grim Reaper: The music video for "Good Goodbye" features one, played by NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
  • Hellbent For Leather: The band members are wearing an all-leather outfit in the "What I've Done" music video.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Mike Shinoda has called his bandmates as his "five best friends". Bassist Phoenix has referred to them as his "brothers". Special mention goes to Mike and co-lead singer Chester Bennington.
  • Hidden Track: In Minutes to Midnight, "Shadow of the Day" fades into an ambient instrumental that ends with a backwards cymbal leading directly into "What I've Done". It's likely that this was meant to be the full intro to the latter song, and the band (or their label) indexed it there so that "What I've Done" would match the single version.
    • A Thousand Suns has separately indexed segues for almost every song.
    • The Hybrid Theory EP has an untitled instrumental following six minutes of static after "Part of Me" - this track was later reworked into "Session" and included on Meteora.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: In "Figure.09": "I think of how I shot myself in the back again."
    • "Lies Greed Misery" is all about looking forward to watching an adversary screw himself over.
  • Humongous Mecha:
    • The cover of Reanimation and some of their music videos, most notably 'Pts.Of.Athrty'. Their song "What I've Done" also appeared in Transformers (as well as several thousand Transformers Armada Starscream AMVs).
      • The videos for "New Divide" and "Iridescent" feature the Transformers prominently.
    • The video for "Somewhere I Belong", include Gundam models owned by Mr. Hahn himself. Models include the Sazabi, the Wing Zero Custom and the GP-01 Zephyranthes.
      • Bandai-Namco returned the favor by featuring "The Catalyst" in Gundam Extreme Vs. In connection, a Linkin Park version of the [GP-01Fb] was included with the purchase of the "A Thousand Suns" Japanese edition.
  • Hypocritical Humor: On "Rn@wy", Phoenix Orion claims he "can't get with the hybrids". He raps this over an industrial rock track.
  • Instrumentals: Most of which show up on fan-exclusive EPs. These are the ones that don't:
    • "Session" from Meteora, which was actually nominated for a Grammy.
    • "Wake" from Minutes To Midnight.
    • "Lockjaw", a piece Mike and Rob were commissioned to make by Digidesign to promote ProTools 8.
    • "Issho ni", a charity track for the 2011 earthquake that devastated Japan.
    • "Tinfoil", from Living Things.
    • "The Summoning" and "Drawbar" from The Hunting Party.
  • "I Want" Song: Pick a song from the first two albums.
  • The Invisible Band: The video for Lost in the Echo.
  • Kaleidoscope Hair: Mike Shinoda was known for dyeing his hair red, blue, or occasionally bright yellow during the Hybrid Theory period.
  • Keet: Despite being most famous for his unapologetically angsty lyrics, Chester Bennington was widely considered to be the funnyman of the group, prone to jumping on things, shouting at random intervals, and performing strange rituals with the stage crew.
  • Kid Hero: The protagonist of the "From The Inside" music video, who is played by Chester's son.
  • Large Ham: Chester all the time, whether onstage or on tape. However, Mike isn't that far behind him.
  • Le Parkour: The "FRGT/10" music video features the protagonist being chased in rooftops doing this.
  • Let's See YOU Do Better!:
    • As a response to the typical criticism from fans over "Issho ni", Mike challenged everyone to remix the song as they saw fit (although he didn't provide the stems).
    • The theme of "Step Up" and "When They Come For Me".
  • Licensed Game: 8-Bit Rebellion for the iPhone/iPod Touch. There was concern about the game being good, but fans were still looking forward to the new song and midi remixes of their previous hits included. Critic reviews were mixed.
    • LP RECHARGE, done in collaboration with Power The World/Music for Relief to help raise awareness and funds for sustainable energy and solutions to energy poverty, with certain purchasable in-game items counting as a donation. Unlike 8-Bit Rebellion, LP RECHARGE is a social Facebook game with an upcoming mobile version.
  • Lighter and Softer:
    • Image-wise, they came off as the least offensive of all the Nu Metal bands at the time of their debut. They had made it a point to not swear on Hybrid Theory and Meteora, maintained a professional work ethic with a reputation as Nice Guys, and rarely indulged in typical rock-star hedonism (especially given Chester's Dark and Troubled Past). That doesn't mean their music wasn't just as dark and heavy as the others.
    • The music on One More Light is far poppier and lighter than their earlier work, but their lyrical themes remain just as heavy.
  • Light Is Not Good: The yrics for "Iridescent" have this to say:
    And in the burst of light that blinded every angel
    As if the sky had blown the heavens into stars
    You felt the gravity of temper grace falling into empty space
    No one there to catch you in their arms
  • Little Miss Badass: In the "Good Goodbye" music video, Chester was having a winning streak until a little girl appears during the climax. She proceeded to trash him.
  • Long-Runner Line-up: Type 2, from 2000 to Chester Bennington's death in 2017.
  • Loudness War: All their albums, with Living Things being the most audibly affected.
    • Shinoda acknowledged the bad mixing of Living Things by releasing the Acapellas and Instrumentals for digital download from iTunes and Amazon, so that fans could remix it to how they liked it. He already had a great reputation for caring about fans but this increased it tenfold.
  • Lyrical Cold Open:
  • Lyrical Dissonance:
    • The song "What I've Done" sounds like a moody downer, but it's about facing the consequences of your actions and finding forgiveness.
    • "Bleed It Out" averts this by being actually about writing lyrics, and re-writing them again and again (instead of self-mutilation as many automatically conclude). Bennington and Shinoda vented their lyric writing frustrations by writing more lyrics. This is lampshaded by the opening line "Yeah, here we go for the hundredth time…"
    • "Waiting for the End" sounds awfully upbeat for being a song about resigning yourself to your regrets.
  • Madness Mantra: On multiple songs, most notably "Given Up" and "One Step Closer". Also have a tendency to have an ending Punctuated! For! Emphasis!.
  • Metal Scream:
    • "THESE WOOOOOUUUUNNNNDS, THEY WIIIIILLLLLLLLLLLL NOT HEEEAAAALLLL"
    • "Given Up" contains a seventeen-second, two pitch scream while "Across the Line" has a prolonged scream lasting eleven seconds. "Wth>You" has a 9 second prolonged COME ON!!! at the beginning.
    • The chorus of "Blackout" also finds Chester giving his voice a serious work out.
    • "YOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUU TRY TO TAKE THE BEST OF ME! GO AWAY!"
    • "VICTIMIZED! VICTIMIZED! NEVER AGAIN VICTIMIZED!!!!!"
    • "NO CONTROOOOOOOOOOL! NO SURPRIIIIIIIIIIISE!"
  • Mirror Match: Chester during the "Heavy" music video, illustrating his battle with his own demons. Bonus points for it taking place in front of a literal mirror.
  • Mondegreen: "Try the ketchUP, motherfucker!"
  • Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Due to their eclectic nature, they go all over the scale. Their nu metal material (from Hybrid Theory, Meteora and The Hunting Party) is generally 6-8, with the softer songs from those albums dropping to 4-5. Minutes to Midnight and Living Things are mostly 3-5 (with the heavier songs being 6-8). A Thousand Suns averages at 2-4. One More Light resides at 1-3.
  • Myspeld Rökband: The band's name refers to a Lincoln Park in which Chester resided in shortly after joining the band while he was briefly homeless. One of the band members reasoned that the name would also help forge a connection with fans, since there were many cities with a Lincoln Park in them. The name is misspelled not because it was "cool" — it was because lincolnpark.com was already taken.
  • Neoclassical Punk Zydeco Rockabilly: Their music has pretty much always been a mix of rock, hip-hop, and electronica. Which of these ingredients takes prominence depends on the song.
  • New Sound Album: Every album since Meteora. Each album goes:
    • Hybrid Theory: Nu Metal, rap, and rock.
    • Meteora: Nu Metal, rap, and rock, with some electronics thrown in.
    • Minutes to Midnight: U2-esque Alternative Rock with almost no rap.
    • A Thousand Suns: A mix of electronic and experimental rock. More rap than Minutes to Midnight, but not as much as before.
    • Living Things: A combination of their electronics from A Thousand Suns and some elements from their earlier albums.
    • The Hunting Party: Back to Nu Metal, though with a bigger emphasis on Alternative Metal and Hard Rock than their first two albums.
    • One More Light: Straightforward Pop.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: The video for "Iridescent" features Mike as a one-eyed serpent king with spikes growing from his shoulders in a post-apocalyptic world where the rest of the band imitates The Last Supper while the Autobots hang around.
  • Nobody Loves the Bassist: Phoenix has his share of Butt-Monkey moments:
    • The first time the band visited Japan, a fan handed him an envelop that was addressed "Dear Mike, Joe, Chester, Brad, Rob, and bass player man."
    • Mike, meanwhile, often pokes fun at Phoenix and his Twittering on his blog. He even made a banner that says "Blogging Totally Pwns Twittering" for fans of his blog to post on their websites in a response to one of Phoenix's Twitter posts.
    • He's not even credited on Hybrid Theory, due to having left the band before they started recording in order to fulfill a prior commitment to one of his older bands. He came back to Linkin Park in time for the start of the Hybrid Theory tour.
  • Not Christian Rock: While some of their lyrics vaguely hint at a higher power and others directly reference God, only a few members of Linkin Park are Christian.
  • Not So Different: Referenced in Numb:
    But I know you were just like me, with someone disappointed in you!
  • Once per Episode: Their first two albums each featured turntablist Joe Hahn on a solo track.
    • Until Age of Extinction, each of the Bayformer films ended with one of their songs.
  • Older and Wiser: Minutes to Midnight and A Thousand Suns disposes of much of the angst of their earlier work, in place of it being deeper and with more meaningful messages and themes.

    Tropes P to Z 
  • Performance Video: "Faint", "Numb/Encore", "Given Up", and "Talking to Myself". An alternate video for "Waiting for the End" was one of their performances filmed by the audience themselves.
  • Perishing Alt-Rock Voice: Whenever Mike's singing.
  • Piss-Take Rap:
    • Chester's vocals in the verses of "Blackout" strongly resemble rapping.
    • Piss-Take Reggae: Mike's toasted vocals in "Waiting for the End"; Chester's half-screamed, half-toasted vocals in "Wretches and Kings".
  • Pop-Star Composer: Mike worked with Joe Trapanese, best known for helping Daft Punk on the score to TRON: Legacy, for the soundtrack to an Indonesian martial-arts film called The Raid.
  • Power Ballad: Most of their Surprisingly Gentle Songs can be considered this. "Powerless", "Waiting for the End", "Iridescent", "Heavy", "In The End", "Leave Out All the Rest", "Shadow of the Day", "My December", and "Numb" have been generally accepted by the critics as power ballads.
  • Powered by a Forsaken Child: The music video for "Pts.OF.Athrty" features the band members' heads being used as a power source for Humongous Mechas .
  • Preppy Name: Chester Charles Bennington, though he grew up poor.
  • Protest Song:
    • "Hands Held High," "No More Sorrow," and "The Little Things Give You Away."
    • A Thousand Suns as a whole. It's a concept album dealing with war and nuclear power, as well as human fears of what's going to happen to the world.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!:
    • "Bleed It Out": "I'LL MAKE YOU FAAAAACE! THIIIIS! NOWWWWW!"
    • "Faint": "Don't turn your back on me! I WON'T! BE! IGNORRRRRRED!"
    • "A Place for My Head": "STAY! AWAY! FROM ME!!!"
    • "Qwerty": "LIES! You hide behind— LIES! You're lost inside that cold disguise. BEHIND! YOUR! LIES!"
    • "A Line in the Sand": "GIVE! ME! BACK! WHAT'S! MIIIIIINE!"
  • Rape as Drama: The protagonist of the music video for "Crawling" is heavily implied to be a victim of Parental Incest.
  • Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: Overlaps with Author Appeal, as the female protagonists of most of their music videos tend to have these features (specifically "Crawling", "Numb", and "FRGT/10").
  • Real Song Theme Tune:
    • Two of their songs have been used in three video games: "The Catalyst" in Gundam Extreme Vs. and The 2010 Continuity Reboot of Medal of Honor; and "Castle of Glass" in Medal of Honor: Warfighter. One of the latter game's multiplayer trailers also used "Lies Greed Misery".
    • The instrumental riff from "Somewhere I Belong" is the theme music to The Mark Levin Show, one of the most popular conservative talk radio programs in the U.S.
  • Record Producer: All their albums are produced by Mike, except for Hybrid Theory, produced by Don Gilmore. Gilmore returned to help him on Meteora, while Rick Rubin assisted him on Minutes to Midnight, A Thousand Suns, and Living Things. Mike and Brad produced The Hunting Party and One More Light themselves.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Heavily invoked by the chorus of "Leave Out All The Rest".
    When my time comes,
    forget the wrong that I've done,
    help me leave behind some
    reasons to be missed.
    Don't resent me,
    and when you're feeling empty,
    keep me in your memory,
    leave out all the rest…
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Chester and Mike's vocal roles. Chester provided the aggression, passion and sensitivity while Mike provides reflectiveness and observations.
    • Occasionally Mike provides the aggression, such as on "When They Come for Me."
    • This was also true of Mike and Chester in real life - as can be seen in any of the band's Making Of documentaries, Mike is hard working and focused on the music, but friendly. On the other hand, Chester is always clowning around, cracking jokes and generally making the sessions entertaining.
  • Refrain from Assuming / Non-Appearing Title: A good third of their songs.
    • All the ones on Hybrid Theory feature the title as part of the chorus except for "Papercut", "Points of Authority", and "Cure for the Itch". This was not coincidental, it is a proven method of making music catchy and appealing to radio listeners.
  • Rewarded as a Traitor Deserves: Heavily invoked in "Burn It Down".
  • Rockers Smash Guitars: Brad threw one of his guitars during the Live in Texas concert DVD after performing "A Place for My Head", but didn't actually break it like usual, so Chester went ahead and finished it.
  • Rule of Symbolism: Really, all of A Thousand Suns, but "Jornada del Muerto" stands out even in the middle of it. The album is about the threat of nuclear weapons. Jornada del Muerto was the site of the Trinity test, the world's first atomic explosion. In addition, Mike is singing "Lift me up/Let me go" in Japanese at the beginning of the song. Japan is the only country in the world where nuclear weapons were deployed offensively.
  • Sad Clown: Chester Bennington. As noted above, he was known to be the jokester of the group, but dealt with depression his whole life, not to mention the trauma of childhood sexual abuse, which led to alcoholism and drug dependency. It all eventually got the better of him.
  • Sampling: Linkin Park has sampled High and Mighty, Brand Nubian, Lamont Dozier, UNKLE and the first Pokemon movie, mostly on Reanimation. Conversely, they've been sampled by Krayzie Bone and Juicy J.
    • In the early days they often didn't credit the samples. This led them to being banned from releasing the track "She Couldn't" because it got released on a promo without paying for the samples first.
    • Many of their samples weren't from pre-existing songs so much as pre-existing sounds, chopped and screwed into beats and ambient tones.
  • Samus Is a Girl: The masked protagonist of the "FRGT/10" music video turns out to be the sleeping woman in the opening scene.
  • Scary Musician, Harmless Music: An inversion. They looked like normal guys who occasionally experimented with their hairstyles (and heavily tattooed themselves in some cases), but played heavy music with themes rooted in alienation, depression, and emotional turmoil.
  • Self-Titled Album: Double-subverted by the Hybrid Theory EP. It's not the band's current name, but it was at the time it was released.
  • Shout-Out:
    • "Wretches and Kings" contains part of the immortal opening line from "Bring the Noise," which comes full circle in the HavocNdeeD remix which features Chuck D himself.
    • A few in "When They Come for Me". From name-dropping Lauryn Hill, Biggie, Chuck D and Big Daddy Kane to this:
  • Shower of Angst: The protagonist of the music video for "Crawling" is seen doing this during the video.
  • Solo Side Project: Mike Shinoda's Fort Minor.
  • Space Opera: The music video for "Leave Out All The Rest" takes place in a Cool Starship somewhere in the Milky Way.
  • Spiky Hair: The band, particularly Chester, Mike and Joe, had their hair literally up during the early-mid 2000s.
  • Spoken Word in Music:
    • An interview of the late turntablist Roc Raida discussing Rap Rock is inserted into "High Voltage."
    • Speeches by J. Robert Oppenheimer, Mario Savio, and Martin Luther King Jr.. appear on a few tracks in A Thousand Suns.
  • Step Up to the Microphone: Mike has "No Roads Left" all to himself, as well as most of the vocals in "In Between."
    • The later albums have a lot of tracks where Mike is singing lead instead of rapping, though Chester will usually still join in on the chorus.
    • "Invisible" from One More Light gives Mike lead vocals for the entirety of the song, with Chester only doing backing vocals.
    • Played completely straight in "Until It Breaks," where Brad actually sings after the third verse 'til the end.
  • Stylistic Suck: The infamous Mmm… Cookies EP for their fan club. It's just Mike and Chester dicking around in the studio while recording Minutes to Midnight.
  • Subdued Section: Quite a few times, most notably "In the End" and "The Catalyst".
  • Subliminal Seduction: Playing "Announcement Service Public" backwards yields Chester howling "YOU SHOULD BRUSH YOUR TEETH AND YOU SHOULD WASH YOUR FACE!"
  • Surprisingly Gentle Songs: "My December", "Leave Out All the Rest", "Shadow of the Day", "Iridescent", "Blackbirds", "Castle of Glass", "Roads Untraveled", and "Final Masquerade".
    • "She Couldn't" is like a boyband ballad, which stands out particularly as the only song without any crunching guitars in it from the Hybrid Theory period. Unfortunately, this side of the band wasn't known for years because the song was never released until it leaked unofficially.
    • One More Light is a surprisingly gentle album.
    • The king of them all must be Chester's rendition of the Weeds theme "Little Boxes," which is even softer sounding than "Leave Out All the Rest." Probably for this reason it remains soundtrack only.
  • Take That!:
    • "When They Come for Me" for the contingent of fans who still yearn for the Hybrid Theory days.
      • There's even a line in it where Mike outright says he's not "the same person telling you to forfeit the game," in reference to "Points of Authority".
    • "Step Up" addresses other rap-rock bands in a less-than-flattering fashion:
    Mike: Rapping over rock doesn't make you a pioneer, 'cause rock and hip-hop have collaborated for years. But now they're getting randomly mixed and matched up all after a fast buck and all the tracks suck.
  • Textless Album Cover: A Thousand Suns, The Hunting Party and One More Light.
  • They Killed Kenny Again: Chester was constantly killed-off in the music videos.
  • This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: "No Laundry."
  • Tired of Running: The song "Easier to Run" talks about how it is a lot easier to run from your problems instead of choosing to face them head on.
  • Token White: Chester during the band's guesting on Carpool Karaoke days before his death, being accompanied only by Mike (a Japanese-American) and Joe (a Korean-American), as well as that segment's host Ken Jeong (a South Korean).
  • Tough Act to Follow: invoked Directly referenced by Mike in the song "When They Come for Me", referring to the mega-success of Hybrid Theory and Meteora where the majority of the band's fans were introduced to them.
  • Tropaholics Anonymous: Chester and featured artist Kiiara are attending one in the "Heavy" music video. Judging from Chester's own real-life issues, it's likely a support group for people with depression.
  • Tykebomb: The "From the Inside" video features Chester's young son Jaime as a walking sonic grenade.
  • Unfortunate Names: Chester Bennington, at least while he was in school and had to deal with "Chester the Molester" jokes. Considering that he had actually been molested as a child, he didn't find this funny at all. He tried to roll with it by wearing a shirt bearing the words "Chester the Molester" during LP's early years.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: "Burn It Down".
  • Unstoppable Rage:
    • SHUT UP WHEN I'M TALKING TO YOU! in "One Step Closer."
    • The chorus and bridge in "Lies Greed Misery:"
      I wanna see you choke on your LIES! swallow up your GREED! suffer all alone in your MISERY!
      (…)
      You did it to yourself! You did it to yourself! YOU DID IT TO YOURSELF!!!
  • Very Special Episode: The "Linkin Park & Friends Celebrate Life in Honor of Chester Bennington" concert repeatedly (and understandably) tackled how anyone should not let depression consume them and seek help.
  • Video Full of Film Clips: The aforementioned video for "New Divide." "What I've Done" may also count.
  • Vocal Tag Team: Chester and Mike. When Chester didn't do the lead vocals, Mike commonly rapped (or, on the later albums, sometimes sangs) the verses while Chester did the chorus, or contributed a single verse in a song otherwise sung by Chester.
  • A Wild Rapper Appears!:
    • Done twice in The Hunting Party: Hip-hop legend Rakim in "Guilty All the Same", then a variation with Helmet's Page Hamilton in "All for Nothing."
    • Minutes to Midnight has a variation. After having nearly equal time with Chester in the first two albums, Shinoda was severely Demoted to Extra in Minutes to Midnight, which is pure Arena Rock with Chester on most of the vocals. So when, after three songs where only Chester sings, you get to "Bleed It Out" and finally hear Shinoda rapping, it has this feel.
    • The song "Burn It Down" has this feel too. The whole time it seemed like yet another Linkin Park song where Chester solos, which made it a bit surprising when Shinoda delivers a rap verse out of nowhere towards the end of the song.
  • Word Salad Lyrics: "High Voltage" has some pretty bizarre boasts.
  • Word Salad Title: Frat Party at the Pankake Festival, their first DVD. It documents the Hybrid Theory tour.
  • Xtreme Kool Letterz:
    • The track titles of Reanimation.
    • The band's name on two different occasions. They originally formed as Xero in their garage band days and their current name came about because they couldn't get lincolnpark.com as a domain.
  • You Are Not Alone: "Shadow Of The Day", "Heavy" (quite literally in its music video), and "One More Light".
  • Zombie Apocalypse: The video for "Darker Than Blood" features Mike and Steve Aoki working with surviving scientists trying and failing to find a cure for a zombie virus that decimated the population. They succeed when their last attempt cures an infected little boy, and they send the cure out to the remaining survivors.
    • Artistic License – Medicine / Pharmacology: They're a couple of scientists handling incredibly dangerous tissue and blood samples, but unlike the surgeons in the OR, they're wearing no protective gear whatsoever.


Who cares if one more light goes out?
Well, I do.

Alternative Title(s): Chester Bennington

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