16 Years Ago: Linkin Park Releases 'Meteora'

March 25, 2019

In 2000, Linkin Park knocked it out of the park with their debut album Hybrid Theory. Then on March 25th, 2003, the band continued to ride that wave with their follow-up album Meteora.

The band has gone on record that the toughest part about writing a new album was the amount of pressure it takes from beginning to end. But the pressure didn't originate from fans, management or label executives. It came from themselves. Guitarist Brad Delson told MTV that they didn't expect Hybrid Theory to sell so well, and they weren't sure how they did it and if they would be able to do it again.

However, that amount of pressure lifted off of their shoulders once "Somewhere I Belong" shot up the charts. A mixture of heavy guitar riffs, scratching by Joe Hahn, rapping by Mike Shinoda, and singing/screaming by Chester Bennington, it was the first of five songs to dominate the charts and radio.

The second single off of Meteora was the easily recognizable "Faint." Opening with a string section assembled by Shinoda, "Faint" features one of Bennington's most memorable screams.

The third hit Meteora song was the final track, "Numb." The song took over the Modern Rock chart for twelve weeks and earned the band a Grammy for "Best Rap/Sung Collaboration" for their "Numb/Encore" combo with Jay-Z on their Collision Course album.

The fourth single off the album was the powerful "Breaking The Habit." Shinoda wrote the song based on several dark events that happened to a friend of his and did not care if it would make it on the radio or not. Writing and recording the song was more important. Unbeknownst to Shinoda, "Breaking The Habit" proved to be a huge radio contender.

The final single was "Lying From You," which Shinoda says was about pushing someone away from you by purposefully lying to them to make them hate being around you.

Part of Linkin Park's ability to connect with their audience was to sing about emotions through past experiences. Bennington told MTV that they write songs about anger, lonliness, frustration, love and happiness because anyone that listens to their music would be able to identify with it somehow.