Mike and Chester set off on Wednesday for a packed day of press in Toronto, Canada. Streamed on Facebook Live, they interviewed with iHeartRadio Canada, MUCH, and 102.1 The Edge. It was at The Edge where they performed a stripped “Heavy” with Chester covering Kiiara’s vocals, as they plan to do on tour. A possible performance may have also been made at iHeartRadio.
and KiSS 92.5 also had interviews with Mike and Chester, yet to be posted. Updates will be made when they are available. Below are videos with summarized transcripts, thanks to LPLive!
iHeartRadio Canada – Interview
Chester and Mike both have unruly kids, so at least one song is about telling their kids that there are reasons for rules and that they aren’t trying to fight with their kids just to argue with them.
It’s easier for Mike to make music first rather than to work on lyrics first. This was a challenging process for One More Light because lyrics are “elusive”…”that’s a cool idea, but it isn’t great.” Lyrical ideas first were a struggle.
Mike wrote a song with Ross Golan. The initial lyric idea in the chorus before it changed was “I wish I was Christopher Walken” and the song ended up being “One More Light.”
Chester initially wanted to have a lot of followers on Instagram without ever posting a photo, but Mark Fiore started posting pictures on it during a tour which ruined Chester’s plan.
MUCH – Interview
The band puts a lot of effort into each record, but Mike says there aren’t that many artists that will work on an album from 12-18 months. It took that long to just get the 10 songs that made the album, but over 100 demos were made.
There is a lot of anticipation by the band in what they release, referencing Heavy and Battle Symphony’s releases to the world/fans.
From Chester’s experience, a lot of artists make just 12-20 demos and then narrow it down from there. If Linkin Park feels good about it, they’ll keep writing as long as they’re inspired and then they’ll begin the process to narrow down the songs.
Around 50 songs in this process got lyrics and melodies and Chester said he could pick 10 of any of those 50 and be happy with the songs. But when the rest of the band looks at the songs, it becomes pretty obvious as a group which songs are the strongest once they vote on them.
The full band is very involved in the selection of the songs, for example Joe saying he doesn’t like Rob’s drums on a demo. With six members, it’s hard to get all six members to like every part of every song. Mike makes large documents in his computer of all of the notes/comments by band members on each song.
Asked how the band’s “journey” is represented in the new music, Chester said it was much harder to write songs in the beginning (Hybrid Theory). In most cases, the music would dictate the lyrics (punk song having aggressive lyrics, loud songs having screaming, etc). In this case for One More Light, they could enter the room with nothing and a few hours later come out with a full song. Sometimes just right in the middle of conversations about how they are dealing with (sometimes sad) things in life, Mike would start playing piano and ideas for verse, chorus, and bridge melodies and words would flow freely. They were able to record vocal ideas and lyrics the exact day the song was made, so it made the songs more emotional since Chester already knew the lyrics and meaning before he even came into the studio to lay down a track by reading it off a piece of paper. This is a much different process than before, where they’d come up with vocal and lyric ideas right in the middle of recording vocals. Starting the process this way made the songs have more meaning to the members in the band.
102.1 The Edge – Interview – “Heavy” Performance
The band is always trying to find new ways to play music and experiment with new instruments and songwriting means.
Linkin Park is evolving as a band, but not specifically with “genre”. Heavy is on a lot of alternative, pop, and chill playlists and the band makes fun of “Chill” not being a real genre.
Starting off, Mike made music because it was fun. When he was a teenager, he’d skip parties and movies to make music for fun instead of to like, get girls, be famous, etc.
Every artist has different reasons for making songs, like to approach it as “let’s write this song because it’s what’s hot right now” or “it’s a good song to get a sports endorsement.” Linkin Park doesn’t write songs for those reasons.
One More Light (song) is about “who cares if “one more light” goes out, one more person dies? I care.” Once the band releases the songs, the fans then take the songs and it means things to them that it doesn’t necessarily mean to the band…it’s part of the process to connect with the music.
The band is putting together its North American Tour right now with dates and bands.
Linkin Park leaves on Wednesday for European promo for two weeks.
KiSS 92.5 – “Heavy” Performance