Linkin Park is a group that has touched the lives of music fans around the world. But that's not their only effect: they've also influenced and inspired many other artists over the years. Several of those artists have recorded their own versions of Linkin Park's biggest hits, giving listeners some excellent tracks to choose from. Listen to the 7 best Linkin Park covers by clicking the links below, then get tickets to see Linkin Park live here at AXS.
Gordi's version of one of Linkin Park's most enduring favorites is the only Linkin Park cover that involves a squeezebox. That alone makes it worth listening to, to hear how such a unique instrument fits into the Linkin Park sound. She and her bandmates came up with a creative way to blend their own instruments and style into the song, so it winds up sounding surprisingly natural for an electronic folk singer. Other covers have more happening musically and are more intense, but this is a neat new interpretation of a still-great song.
"America's Got Talent" fan favorites Us The Duo recorded a cover version of "In The End" and it was a surprise. They're a pop-rock duo and yet they were recording a rap-rock song. On the surface, that didn't make any sense. But they made it work, with their vocal harmonies creating a haunting sound that made the cover distinct. Their version is not the same as the original, and some fans may feel that it's too quiet. Yet the singing alone makes it worth listening to because it's one of their better vocal performances and the duo clearly stepping out of the comfort zone.
Godsmack have recorded plenty of intense songs in their day, but their version of "Crawling" wasn't anything like what fans would expect. While touring in 2017, the band performed a version of the track in tribute to Chester Bennington and took it in the opposite direction. Godsmack's version of "Crawling" was an acoustic cover, which by default changed the entire tone and feel of the song, which had such heavy and startling instrumentals in it. Lead singer Sully Erna put his heart into singing the vocals and turned it from something fierce into something heartfelt, wounded and contemplative. It was beautiful even if it didn't pack a punch.
"Shadow of the Day" is one of Linkin Park's slower songs, as they moved into a different sound with their later albums. The Used covered it for BBC Radio 1 and put their own spin on it. The original version was slower and more ponderous as if the narrator was reflecting on something. The cover version was louder and more fast-paced, which made the song pop a bit more. The difference is jarring at first, but the more you listen to it, the more it becomes fun. It preserved the same message of the original but it sounded so different that it felt almost like listening to an entirely new song.
Aaron Lewis has moved on from his hard rock days into a very successful country music career. But when he covered "Crawling" that previous experience helped his version stand out from the others. The song was right in Lewis' wheelhouse, and he was easily able to dig down and provide the growling, almost desperate vocals the song needed. At the same time, because he's branched out so much, his version was more than just rock. There's a certain country twang to it, and in general more sincerity to his vocals, rather than just someone yelling into a microphone.
Of all the tribute videos that poured in following Bennington's death, Machine Gun Kelly's cover of "Numb" was by far the most poignant. "Numb" is a song that is all about struggling internally and not knowing where to turn, so it was the exact right song for Kelly to record in wanting to express how he was affected by the sad news. And listening to him perform it, that sadness and emotion is loud and clear. It's not just a tribute cover; it's a performance from someone who is genuinely mourning and wanting to help others who may be feeling the same way. Play the video above to enjoy it.
Punk rockers Sum 41 covered "Faint" for several live performances. But their version of "Faint" at the Reading Festival earlier this year easily climbed to the top of this list for one very special reason: they enlisted Linkin Park member Mike Shinoda to join them for the cover. Sum 41 already put a lot of energy into their version of the song, but to then cover it with one of the original band members made it even more special. It's very rare that a cover involves one of the original artists, and Shinoda and Sum 41 made awesome music together.
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