Friday was a big day for Linkin Park, dropping an outtake track from their 2003 album ‘Meteora’ featuring the late Chester Bennington on vocals.
The single, named ‘Lost’, never made it onto their 2003 album, and now Mike Shinoda has explained why it never made the final track listing, as well as the inspiration behind the lyrics.
Speaking with Audacy, Shinoda recalled the band uncovering the track while going through the Meteora archives. Upon discovering the song, Shinoda described it “like finding a favourite photo you’d forgotten you’d taken.”
Plus, the track had already been mixed and mastered because they were intending on putting it on the 2003 album. Because of this, they didn’t want to remix or remaster the track before its release on Friday.
"The philosophy was, don't really touch it. Present it the way it would have been presented back then. If you don't have to mix it, if you don't have to master it, don't do it," Shinoda said. "So we stuck very closely to that."
The singer mentioned that due to the nature of the emotional lyrics, the track was just too similar to the song ‘Numb,’ causing it to be cut from the album.
"It was this close to being on the record... At some point, you put [the songs] in kind of an order, like these are the best ones and from there it goes down," Shinoda said. "And the one right on the other side of the line was this song 'Lost.' And the only reason it didn't go on is because it sounded - it had the same intensity as 'Numb.'"
Speaking about the inspiration behind the lyrics, Shinoda told Audacy:
"If I remember right, the inspiration for it was looking back on things that are memories that you get just sucked into, and you get immersed in that nostalgia or good feeling or bad feeling."
Adding, "In the case of this song, I think there was a bunch of not-so-good stuff, but it's bittersweet. It's a mixed bag because there's good stuff in there, too. Things aren't black or white or cut and dry. That's what I like about the lyrics of the song."
Have a watch of the full interview up top.
Along with the release of the unearthed track, Linkin Park also announced a 20th anniversary Meteora reissue, which will arrive April 7th.
The reissue will be available in various packages, including a Limited Edition Super Deluxe Box Set, a Deluxe Vinyl Box Set, a Deluxe 3-CD collection and more. You can pre-order that here.