Linkin Park’s debut album, Hybrid Theory, is a revolutionary album that crafted a furious blend of hip-hop, rock, metal and electronica. Originally released on 24 October 2000, it remains one of the most influential records of its era, inspiring countless artists, such as Bring Me The Horizon, BROCKHAMPTON and twenty one pilots.
Hybrid Theory’s fusion of genres, raw emotion and hard-hitting production would dominate the nu metal millennium – and rightly so. However, the iconic album – and group – would be years in the making, with Linkin Park having to fight for what they believed in, in order to produce the legendary album.
From Xero to heroes
The future Linkin Park were originally a group called Xero, featuring rapper Mike Shinoa, singer Mark Wakefield, guitarist Brad Delson, bassist Dave Farrell and DJ Joe Hahn. Having formed in the mid-90s, they landed a publishing deal with Zomba Music Publishing, where Delson was an intern, but a lack of progression spurred Mark Wakefield to leave and pursue other projects. In need of a singer, the group found Chester Bennington through an attorney friend of Jeff Blue’s, Zomba’s then Vice President.
After receiving a Xero demo tape, Bennington, formerly the lead singer of grunge band Grey Daze, responded with an audition tape that would leave Blue and the group utterly floored. The singer was ready to join forces and bring the band to the next level. Following Bennington’s arrival, Xero would become Hybrid Theory before evolving into Linkin Park.