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Linkin Park: Forewarning The Rise Of Nu-Nu-Metal

Whether you love them or hate them, Linkin Park are here to stay. When ChartAttack caught up with Brad Delson and Phoenix of LP, the world’s hardest working band reveals the inside scoop behind Meteora, the name Phoenix and the rise and fall of nu-metal.

ChartAttack: I heard that Meteora was intended to be one big song. Is this true?
Phoenix: It wasn’t necessarily the idea of having it be one rock opera.
Brad Delson: It’s no Tommy.
Phoenix: It’s not in that sense, but it’s just more in the idea that we wanted the songs themselves to feel like they had a part together and also have them connected in a way that is fluid. We didn’t want anything to feel disjointed, so that you could sit down and listen to the album and almost get that experience that it must have been if you listened to vinyl or 8-tracks, when you couldn’t necessarily fast-forward that easily and the album was an entire piece.

Have you been to Meteora?
Brad Delson: We’re planning on doing a very special show there in 2038. That was really the first date that they would let us. It’s booked so far in advance.

For real?
Brad Delson: No. I’d like to go there. It’s really some of the most amazing pictures I’ve ever seen. It really looks like something someone made up for Lord Of The Rings. It doesn’t look like a real place.

Where does the name Phoenix come from?
Phoenix: I was on tour with a band that I’d been playing with at the same time that I started with this band. I took a year and a half out of Linkin Park to tour full-time with these other guys. Long story short, we were with this girl who was just really annoying and she told me that my name was boring. My real name’s Dave. I think at that point, I named myself Phoenix from the scene in Mystery Men where Ben Stiller does it. We’d watched it a lot at the time. And somehow it just stuck. It wasn’t supposed to be a stage name or anything like that.
Brad Delson: He started telling people jokingly, "From now on, I only answer to Phoenix." When he came back into the group and it kinda took off, people really took him for his word and started calling him Phoenix. Because you know, there’s people in entertainment that say, "I am now 'The Sky.'"
Phoenix: I’ve tried to change it at points too, but it’s kinda stuck. I’m considering changing it for the next album.

Is rap-rock dead?
Brad Delson: I think great songs are alive and well and I think any group, no matter what style of music they play, if they write great songs — great parts, and great lyrics, and great vocals and great music — people are gonna like it. I think people like to look at who’s writing good songs and then they like to speculate about a category of music that’s popular, whereas I would argue that it really has nothing to do with category: it’s really individual artists and individuals songs that are capturing people’s imaginations.
Phoenix: And if rap-rock’s dead, that just leaves the door open for nu-rap-rock. Just like metal and then nu-metal. Make sure you use the umlaut. [Ed note. No.]

Chart Attack - March 15, 2004



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