Song of the Week breaks down and talks about the song we just can’t get out of our head each week. Find these songs and more on our Spotify Top Songs playlist. For our favorite new songs from emerging artists, check out our Spotify New Sounds playlist. This week, Linkin Park unearths a rousing cut from Meteora for its upcoming 20th anniversary.
When Linkin Park reissued their seminal debut album Hybrid Theory for its 20th anniversary in 2020, it was baffling to accept how much has changed for the band and for the rock world itself since the album was released. Amidst demos, rarities, live versions, and the original standout selection of tracks, there were dozens of illuminating moments that shed light on the band’s legendary-but-tragic history. Not only were they ascending to the apex of nu-metal and rap-rock, they also happened to possess one of the greatest rock vocalists we’ve seen this century.
Chester Bennington’s untimely death in 2017 — as well as a newfound cultural nostalgia for a style of music that hasn’t been fashionable in 15 years — has allowed us to revisit Linkin Park’s seething, emotional output with an added layer of context and weight. This was a band that had honed in on universal feelings of rage and alienation, but when you hear Bennington sing of these topics after his suicide, it’s deeply affecting to consider the vulnerability of those statements both then and now.
2023 marks yet another important anniversary for Linkin Park: Meteora, the band’s stratospheric second album, turns 20 years old. Along with a deluxe reissue announcement, the band has unearthed “Lost,” a previously-unheard Meteora-era cut that features Bennington’s cathartic vocals in full glory.
Sonically, “Lost” fits right in with the seismic, electronic-aided majesty of fellow Meteora tracks “Breaking the Habit” and “Numb” — though the chord structure is relatively simple, there’s a flurry of keyboard and programming activity from Joe Hahn and Mike Shinoda, incorporating skittering drum machines and a memorable synth line.
The song is also a clear example of where their songwriting impulses were after the success of Hybrid Theory — rather than double down on the harder edges of their nu-metal concoction, they sought an even more universal sound, becoming the arena-filling, hook-heavy rock stars we know them as today. Even though Meteora and “Lost” takes on a more accessible approach than, say, “One Step Closer,” there wasn’t necessarily an exhale from the band. “Lost” is still teeming with the same agitation that made “Crawling” and Meteora’s “Breaking the Habit” so urgent, and it’s a rousing reminder of why this band had captivated so many angsty listeners 20 years ago.