Inquirer (Philippines) and Chester recap Linkin Park’s last visit in Manila nine years ago and talk about recording with Stone Temple Pilots, possible recording plans with Dead By Sunrise in the future, and the process of Linkin Park’s upcoming, sixth studio album!
REVISITING LINKIN PARK
It’s been nine years since Linkin Park first knocked the socks off Pinoy fans with its searing, angst-filled brand of rock. The Grammy-winning group first played in Manila in 2004 for its “Meteora” tour, back when it was still enjoying its status as the nü-metal band of the new millennium.
“We really enjoyed being there—the crowd was great, and it was kind of like a new experience for us to be that far away from home,” vocalist Chester Bennington recently told Inquirer Super in an exclusive phone interview, done while the band was recording its yet-untitled sixth album in California. “We’re actually looking forward to getting back there for quite some time.”
Wish come true
Two concept albums and multiple platinum awards later, he finally gets his wish. On Aug. 13, Bennington, Mike Shinoda (vocals/rhythm guitar/keyboards), Brad Delson (lead guitar), Dave “Phoenix” Farrell (bass guitar), Rob Bourdon (drums/percussion), and Joe Hahn (turntables, samples) are set to show Manila just how much the band’s music has evolved throughout the years in a one-night show at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.
This Manila leg is part of the band’s tour promoting its fifth studio album, “Living Things,” released a year ago.
From the radio-friendly debut single “Burn It Down,” to the sonically aggressive “Lies Greed Misery,” the “Living Things” album serves up singles that are reminiscent of the cathartic, rap-rock/screamo hybrid anthems of old, but with a decidedly electronic finish.
For Bennington in particular, 2013 appears to be a very busy year. Apart from gearing up for the “Living Things” world tour, he has his hands full with his latest stint as Stone Temple Pilots’ (STP) new lead singer. Following Scott Weiland’s controversial split from the ’90s band, Bennington made his surprise debut with STP at Los Angeles radio station krOQ’s Weenie Roast festival last May, performing a brand-new track, “Out of Time,” that he had written with the remaining STP members.
Fans need not worry, though, as Bennington won’t be leaving Linkin Park anytime soon. He will be recording and touring with both bands, as well as possibly writing new material for Dead by Sunrise, the supergroup he had formed with members of electronic rock outfits Julien-K and Orgy back in 2005. (In case you were wondering, Dead by Sunrise is still very much alive in spite of the apparent inactivity.) Musical multitasking is no small feat, but the vocalist seems perfectly happy with how things have been turning out so far.
Your debut as STP’s new frontman at Weenie Roast just came out of nowhere. How did that happen?
Well, unfortunately the band had to make some hard choices in order to move forward. After they’d let Scott go, I got a call from two of our crew who work with them as well, and they asked if that would be something I’d be interested in. Apparently, they’ve been talking to the other guys at STP about who would be a good replacement, and my name came up; I believe I was the only person that they asked. (Laughs) So that’s kind of how it came together. Once we decided to do that, within four weeks we had written a handful of songs and recorded “Out of Time,” and we played a couple of shows. We turned that around really quickly.
Wow. Was it hard to keep it under wraps for that long?
It was. It was actually very difficult… We’d be playing and writing some music, and after about six to seven hours, we’d get hungry. We’d be like, “Let’s go get some food!” and when we’re ready to leave, we’d realize, “We can’t go, we have to order in because we can’t be seen together.” It was pretty hard for us not to tell anybody, to keep it a secret from our friends. But it was really worth it.
Read the rest of the interview HERE.