Linkin Park is currently working on their seventh album, which vocalist Mike Shinoda expects will emerge in the second half of 2016.
“I’ve been on a tear in the studio right now with the band,” he tells Rolling Stone. “We’ve been making so much new material. … A lot of this stuff is, we’re just kind of experimenting a lot with all the different directions the band can go.”
Shinoda is mum on what sounds are informing the follow-up to their 2014 alterna-metal blazer The Hunting Party, saying it’s too early to tell. “We’re just … really heavily focusing on the melodies. Some of the music is coming together here and there but it’s really, right now, more about the words and melodies. So I don’t actually know what the sound of the record is going to be like yet.”
Shinoda recently re-emerged with a rebooted version of his hip-hop side hustle Fort Minor, remixing “Get a Dog” by tangled wordsmiths Homeboy Sandman and Aesop Rock. “I don’t think the next Linkin Park record is going to sound like this remix. But I think there’s a part of me, as just like as a person and also as an artist that I know with every record I am hunting for inspiration. I get that through experiences with people around me.”
Since the release of The Hunting Party, Linkin Park has been laying relatively low. A 17-date tour to support the record was mostly abandoned after vocalist Chester Bennington suffered a leg injury. The band made a guest appearance on the Steve Aoki single “Darker Than Blood” last year.
Linkin Park are enjoying their most recent wave of success thanks to a viral video where YouTube user The Unusual Suspect mashed up what he claims is “183 movies” to sing their 2000 hit “In the End”
“I can’t believe this guy edited all these movies together,” says Shinoda. “I can’t even imagine. What, did he start in in 2005? How do you have the time to do something like that?! I was really impressed. I love it.”