What are the most underrated Linkin Park songs, you haven’t heard but should listen to?
On the 20th of July, 2017, every single millennial who grew through the 90s loving rock music, and were lucky enough to not have strict religious parents who told you that rock was the devil’s music (they’re ignorant. It’s actually jazz), was caught off guard by the tragic death of Chester Bennington, the lead vocalist of Linkin Park.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, or unless your rock doesn’t have its own built in WiFi, then you’ve seen the comments that were being copied and pasted everywhere on Facebook, consisting the lyrics of various Linkin Park songs to serve as a testimony to Chester. If you haven’t, here it is:
“Now “In the end” your body is “Numb” but you have “No more sorrow”. “Breaking the Habit” was difficult for you but you were always “One step closer”. Your voice will be always “Crawling” on me “From the Inside” till the day I “Bleed it Out” and “Faint”.”
Aside from No More Sorrow, all of those songs have their music videos. Which led me to think that most of these people are only fans of the Linkin Park songs that was shown on television. So, as a man who has memorized every single song off of Xero to Minutes to Midnight, allow me to show you 5 great, underrated Linkin Park songs that you need to listen to, and why I love them.
Disclaimer: All of these songs are off of their albums that have been released only until Minutes to Midnight. Yes, I’m that kind of fan.
The song: “Reading My Eyes”
Part of the reason why Linkin Park gained a massive following is because of the beautifully dark incorporation of rapping into their heavy music, done by Mike Shinoda. A.K.A. the “that Asian guy” of Linkin Park. And in this song, which went under the radar for even hardcore Linkin Park fans (because they weren’t technically Linkin Park back then), we get to hear the best that Shinoda’s rapping skills have to offer, as he shines brighter than Chester in this song. Don’t be discouraged by that, though – we still get to hear Chester’s signature scream-that-makes-you-worry-about-his-vocal-chords in the song, which is one of the deepest screams he has ever done. This is an excellent introduction to those who aren’t familiar with Shinoda’s more intense lyrics.
Why you’ll love it:
It’s dark, it’s heavy, and you can tell from listening to it that every single member of Linkin Park were just flipping s*** as they were playing their parts in the song. I love that it went under the radar, because it did for a good reason.
The song: “Cure For The Itch”
This one isn’t really a song, in the sense that it would have both music and lyrics, because it only contains the former. This was composed by Mr. Hahn, or Joe Hahn, Linkin Park’s DJ/Turntable/that other Asian guy in Linkin Park. And if you used your ears to their full potential when you listen to their songs, you know that the electronic sounds and disc scratches are the garnish to most Linkin Park songs.
This underrated Linkin Park song is off of their album Meteora. It was a stranger to some fans, mostly because we were waiting for something to sing along to other than “pado pado pado pado pado”. What we got instead was a electronic orchestra of a plethora of sounds and beats, which was served to us as an introduction on how future songs were going to have more, and better, electronic sounds to come along. This was the wine to your steak; when you wanted to refresh your palates of the sound of the cymbals, heavy riffs, and screaming, you put this song on next. And on repeat. Please don’t take that literally, you can’t drink electronic sounds.
Why you’ll love it:
It’s out of place, it’s refreshing, it makes you appreciate their hip-hop influence, and it makes you nod your head instead of banging it (hopefully not on something). And, if you’re like me, you can’t help but air scratch to feel like you were the one making the sounds.
The song: “Hands Held High”
Time to get sad, boys and girls.
If you’re currently living in a country under war and/or political turmoil, this will hit close to home.
In their album Minutes to Midnight, Linkin Park shows us an unfamiliar side of them that they finally weren’t shy to express to their fans and new listeners alike. “Hands Held High” is the most extreme of those. Those who know Linkin Park well know their charitable side – they founded “Music for Relief”, which provides assistance and donations to victims of natural disasters, and encompasses 25 countries.
A few of their most notable acts are the concert for the Philippines for the victims of typhoon Haiyan, and the victims of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. They also make donations to suicide prevention and study organizations, for very obvious reasons that everyone should know by now. Linkin Park seemingly takes pride in finding discontent in merely providing music for those who are going through their angst-filled teenage phase, or finding something to listen to while punching somebody in the face.
They took the momentum of their success, and used that momentum to make the lives of arguably millions of other people’s lives better, and ultimately, back to normal. If my house ever gets swept away by the ocean, I wouldn’t pray to be saved, I’d pray for Linkin Park to hold a concert for us. Sorry, Jesus.
Why you’ll love it:
While “Reading my Eyes” showed Mike Shinoda’s darker and angrier rapping, in this song, he’s poetic, realistically sympathetic, and as always, lyrically accurate. This made me cry when I listened to the lyrics instead of just hearing it, which isn’t the usual reaction to a Linkin Park song, but for this song, it’s an exception. An exception brought about by its simplicity, and its success to deliver a song that represents the perspective of victims of war. And with a heavy chorus consisting of only one word, “Amen” (which is smartly appropriate for the song title), sung by ten people, you won’t be able to stop yourself from singing along, for the sake of those who died and suffered.
If this underrated Linkin Park song gets played in public, you better take off your hat.
The song: “My December”
You thought you wouldn’t hear a break up song from a Linkin Park list, would you? Following the “I can’t believe it’s Linkin Park!” trend in this article, you’d be surprised at how emotional Chester, Mike, and the rest of the band are behind the scenes when they’re writing new material. And in this case, the bearing weighs the most on Chester, for he dedicated this song to his girlfriend who left him after they had a huge argument (like most of us have experienced, except he’s cooler, both in career and hairstyle).
Right off the bat, the mood for the song is already set with a few notes. Chester is straightforward as he can be, lyrically, when he opens the vocals for this song. Don’t listen to this underrated Linkin Park song when you’re in a good mood, because the somber atmosphere of this song will pull you in.
Why you’ll love it:
The lyrics are relatable, melancholic, and makes you think what the hell Chester must have went through to write such a masterpiece. You’d think that having depression was material enough to write such well written songs such as Leave Out All The Rest and Figure 0.9, but it turns out that, for most great artists, a heart break is often bound to result in a beautiful song. And this song is just that – beautiful and heart breaking. Just like a bowl of greasy bacon.
The song: “A Place for My Head”
Is there someone you currently hate? Hold a grudge upon? Or is there someone you want to punch in the face (again)? Of course you do, you listen to Linkin Park. Arguably one of their best songs because of the perfect harmony of all band members,
A Place For My Head has that signature heavy Linkin Park sound that their fanbase always crave for and made us love them in the first place. Catchy intro? Check. Check. Hahn’s scratching? Check. Angry lyrics? Check. The face of the guy who pissed off Mike Shinoda so hard that he was inspired to write this song? Well, probably hopefully broken.
Why you’ll love it:
It’s angry, it’s angry, and it’s f****** angry. I’m surprised that there were no cursing in this song, considering how wrathful this song sounds. I only needed one reason to love it, and that hole in the wall I just created with my fist 60 seconds into the song says I found that reason. Really, this underrated Linkin Park song speaks screams for itself. If you find this song relatable, like literally relatable, then you need to go out and just punch Greg in the face for refusing to pay that $5 that he owes you, otherwise, you’re going to need to fix a hole in your wall.
Linkin Park will forever remain my first love of rock music, just like a million other people, and we take pride in that, regardless of where you stand on the issue of his suicide. They were one of the best things that came out of the 90s that wasn’t either the PlayStation 1 or the internet.
Despite the fact that they took on a different genre in the long run of their career, they did well in what they loved doing. And with the loss of its front man, we’ll be hearing less about them, but you won’t hear the last from us.