Readers' Poll: The Best Linkin Park Songs - Rolling Stone
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Readers’ Poll: The Best Linkin Park Songs

Your picks include ‘Crawling,’ ‘Faint’ and ‘Papercut’

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Last week, Linkin Park released their fifth studio album, Living Things. It's their third LP co-produced by Mike Shinoda and Rick Rubin, and it also signals a return to form of sorts. After breaking out with 2000's Hybrid Theory and following that with 2003's Meteora, the rap-rockers have lately veered into more experimental territory. We asked you to name your favorite songs from Linkin Park's entire catalog, and it's safe to say you strongly favored the band's earlier material. Click through to see your Top 10 picks, and listen to our Spotify playlist below.

By Dan Hyman

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10. ‘A Place for My Head’

The follow-up to the power-spewing single "In the End" from Hybrid Theory, this stop-start tale of unfulfilled expectations is anchored by a Middle Eastern riff, while Shinoda waxes poetic about owing nothing. Singer Chester Bennington emerges in the chorus to tell the world he "hates when you don't understand."

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9. ‘Crawling’

This Grammy-winning single off Hybrid Theory was one of the first songs to vault Linkin Park into the mainstream. It also served as a proper introduction to the aggressive angst unleashed by Bennington's massive wail. It's one of the few songs on the album to downplay Shinoda's rapping.

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8. ‘Waiting for the End’

Not only is this the only post-Meteora track to appear on the list: the second single off 2010's A Thousand Suns is also a major departure from the band's usual vibe. Shinoda flows Rasta-style during the verse while a bell tolls behind him, and Bennington's breakdown vocals are thoroughly processed and remixed.

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7. ‘One Step Closer’

Originally known as "Plaster," the first single from Hybrid Theory has plenty of riffage and DJ-scratching flourishes, and it regularly closes out the band's live performances. Its drop-D tuning only further emphasizes the darkness in Bennington's voice when he proclaims, "I'm one step closer to the edge, and I'm about to break."

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6. “Somewhere I Belong”

Basking in the multi-platinum success of Hybrid Theory, Linkin Park returned with 2003's Meteora, the first taste of which came in the form of this pummeling, brooding single. Despite the band's success, feelings of alienation were still front and center: Shinoda describes feeling "stuck, hollow and alone" in the opening verse.

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5. ‘Breaking the Habit’

Many fans believed that Bennington wrote this electronica-infused final single from Meteora, but it was actually Shinoda who penned this number (originally intended to be an instrumental track), which features no guitar distortion or rapping. It was a change of pace for LP, but the track still peaked at Number 20 on the Billboard singles chart.

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4. ‘Faint’

"Don't turn your back on me, I won't be ignored!" Bennington demands on this whiplash of a single from Meteora. The song, which has been extended during recent live shows, would also get the remix treatment as part of Collision Course, Linkin Park's 2004 collaboration project with Jay-Z.

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3. ‘Papercut’

This track's hip-hop beat signals the opening of Hybrid Theory, before giving way to 4-bit-infused alt-rock heaviness. Bennington has stated on several occasions that "Papercut," the second single from the band's debut, is one of his favorite songs in the band's wide-ranging repertoire.

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2. ‘Numb’

This Meteora cut is one of the band's most successful to date. It is also a record-setter: "Numb" is the only song to top the Hot Modern Rock charts during consecutive-week spans in two separate years. Its continued success over the years is due in large part to its fusion with Jay-Z’s "Encore" to form "Numb/Encore," the Grammy-winning single from Collision Course.

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1. ‘In the End’

Inarguably the band's most successful and well-recognized song to date, this Hybrid Theory single, energized by a classic Shinoda vocal firestorm and Bennington's howl-to-the-heavens yelp, catapulted Linkin Park to superstardom. It also remains the band's highest-charting song to date, hitting Number Two on the Hot 100 in 2001.

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