Linkin Park: Minutes To Midnight
Linkin Park returned to the recording studios in 2006 to work on new material. To produce the album, the band chose producer Rick Rubin. Despite initially stating the album would debut sometime in 2006, the album was delayed until 2007. The band had recorded thirty to fifty songs in August 2006, when Shinoda stated the album was halfway
This album was their first album in which they were experimenting beyond nu metal and rock. Before launching all the members of the band were worried whether this would work or not,” Will this be a great hit?”, “Will the album be sold?”,all senseless questions were coming to the band’s mind. Despite of it being different from the previous albums, the album was a great hit. The album’s title, a reference to the Doomsday Clock, foreshadowed the band’s new lyrical themes. Minutes to Midnight sold over 625,000 copies in its first week, making it one of the most successful debut week albums in recent years. The album also took the top spot on the Billboard Charts.
The album contained some of the most amazing songs like “Wake”, “Given Up”, Leave Out All The Rest”, “Bleed It Out”, “Shadow Of the Day”, “What I’ve Done”, “Hands Held High”, “No More Sorrow”, “Valentine’s Day”, “In Between”, “In Pieces” and “The Little Things Give You Away”
The album’s first single, “What I’ve Done” was released on April 2, and premiered on MTV and Fuse within the same week. The single was acclaimed by listeners, becoming the top-ranked song on the Billboard’s Modern Rock Tracks and Mainstream Rock Tracks charts.
The song is also used in soundtrack for the 2007 action film, Transformers. Mike Shinoda was also featured on the Styles of Beyond song “Second to None” which was also included in the film. Later in the year, the band won the “Favorite Alternative Artist” in the American Music Awards. The band also saw success with the rest of the albums singles, “Bleed It Out”, “Shadow of the Day”, “Given Up”, and “Leave Out All the Rest”, which were released throughout 2007 and early 2008. The band also collaborated with Busta Rhymes on his single “We Made It”, which was released on April 29.
Making Of Minutes To Midnight
Linkin park: As this is written, the album is not yet finished. No cover art has been chosen. We aren’t through mixing and mastering the songs. It is safe to say, however, that this will prove to be different kind of album for us. The numbers already show it: our other albums took three to six months to finish, this one took over 14; lyrics are written in about a month, this time we spent over six; we usually write an average of 40 song ideas to finish an album, this one generated well over 100. Numbers aside, this album is different for us on a deeper level
When we first met with our producer Rick Rubin, he asked what we wanted this album to sound like. Going around the room, each of the six of us answered the question in a similar way: we wanted to create something that maintained the integrity of the band’s personality, but pushed our boundaries. Rick challenged us that no boundaries should exist whatsoever in our creative pursuit.
In the months that followed, we struggled to find that truth. We got frustrated when the ideas wouldn’t come, sometimes chasing inspiration through 50 or 60 versions of a song just to end up at something that sounded like the first idea we came up with. We surprised ourselves when a song came together quickly and easily. We celebrated when each of stepped outside our comfort zone and performed or wrote in a way that we never had before.
As the process comes to a close , at the end of over a year of dedication, experimentation and soul-searching, we believe that we’ve achieved that which we were challenged to realize. This album defines not only what we set out to create, but who we’ve become as a band .
About The Songs
Song 1: Wake
This short song was created near the end of the album writing process. The dual-meaning of the word “wake” seemed an appropriate introduction to the record.
Song 2: Given Up
To add a unique twist on the punk/industrial theme of the guitar, Brad added the sounds on the intro of this song: multiple tracks of claps- and keys jingling.
Song 3: Leave Out All The Rest
The final version of this track is virtually the same as the first demo of the song. Very little changed between the first incarnation of the music, and the final version that appears on the album.
Song 4: Bleed It Out
One of the band’s goal on this record was to enjoy it. This track is one of the places that is most evident.
Song 5: Shadow Of The Day
The keyboard loop in “Shadow Of The Day:” went through many different changes during the song’s creation. Dozens of options were created on piano, acoustic guitar, marimba, xylophone, and even electric banjo before finally writing the reversed/edited keyboard version that appears here.
Song 6: What I’ve Done
One of the last songs finished for the album, the lyrics for this song were intended to work on many levels, including freedom, art, and death metaphors.
Song 7: Hands Held High
Early in the writing process, Rick suggested the band experimented by contrasting together unexpected elements. Because the instrumental idea known as “Song Q” sounded primed for melodic singing. Rick suggested the opposite be done. The song’s pipe organ and marching snare proved the perfect musical bed for two of the most inspired verses Mike had ever delivered.
Song 8: No More Sorrow
While the band was recording at the Laurel studio, Rick suggested that Brad try adding ebow to “The Little Things Give You Away”. Although Brad ultimately decided not to add ebow to that song, his experimentation produced the introductory song around which “No More Sorrow” was built.
Song 9: Valentine’s Day
Although it was finished at the Laurel studio, “Valentine’s Day” retains most of the original music and vocals that were recorded during the writing phase. In fact, although the band experimented with re-recording most of their early demos, the earliest recordings were often chosen to make the album.
Song 10: In Between
Rick encouraged the band to lay rough vocals on their demos as early as possible, believing that sometimes a sparse song can become great with the right vocal melody. “In Between” was a perfect example. Even with just Mike’s vocal and bass line, this song remained on the band’s “favorite’s” list, as many songs with a lot more production were voted off the album.
Song 11: In Pieces
This song began as a keyboard and beat loop, along with the staccato guitar in the second verse. In that early form, Chester put down a rough vocal, with words that came relatively effortlessly. The vocals that appeared in those early stages remained virtually unchanged throughout the growth of the song.
Song 12: The Little Things Give You Away
This song began from a demo by Rob Bourdon, based around the drum pattern heard in the bridge. The vocals were finished after the band visited New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.