Hybrid Theory is an EP by Linkin Park (who were at that time called Hybrid Theory, making it a self-titled record), recorded and released in May 1999. It was their first record in chronological order. Before it, in 1997 the band only released a demo tape entitled Xero.
At the time, the band's name was still Hybrid Theory (they were previously called Xero; the band changed the name later in 1999, after Chester Bennington joined them, replacing Mark Wakefield).
Only one thousand copies were made, and the EP was sent to various record labels, including Warner Bros. Records. The remaining copies of the EP were sent to the first members of Linkin Park's newly-formed street team.
On November 19, 2001, Linkin Park Underground, Linkin Park's exclusive fan club, was launched. The first fan club package was shipped to members and included a re-mixed and re-mastered edition of the Hybrid Theory EP, with edited inlay artwork, including a note from the band. The first 500 copies of the CD were individually signed by all 6 members of the band.
The Hybrid Theory EP has fetched several hundred dollars, from auctions on web sites like eBay. Currently, the only ways to obtain the EP are either to purchase it from eBay, or participate in contests in the LPU in which the EP is awarded as a contest prize. However, the prizes awarded by the LPU are not copies from the original run. The differences between the original pressing and the LPU re-release include:
- Original pressing lists the 'Produced by' credit on the back insert to Hybrid Theory (the band's name at the time); the re-release was changed to show Mike Shinoda as producer.
- Artwork differences include a text box on the back cover on the original containing the following quote: "After eight months, she was sure of one thing: that the baby's future would be determined by the convergence of its divided past."; the re-release does not.
- The inner cover/liner notes for the original list the band members at the time, including bassist Kyle Christener; the re-release contains a letter from Linkin Park to their fans and has quite different artwork from the original.
- The re-release of the EP's cover art is noticeably brighter than the EP's original release, and the picture in the inner cover is more blue in the re-release than the original, along with the booklet containing a picture of an ultra sound and the bands name listing alternative to letter from Linkin Park explaining the history and web site of LPU.
The art design and photography was done by Mike Shinoda and Joe Hahn, who have also done album art for Linkin Park's releases and also those of former Machine Shop artists and friends Styles of Beyond.
The unnamed instrumental at the end of track 6 is called "Ambient" or "Secret" by some fans which seems to be a early version of "Session".
Future appearances Edit
A demo entitled "Dedicated" was written during the EP sessions, but didn't appear on the final release. The song was later released on Linkin Park's second annual fan club CD, which also saw a limited release and Songs from the Underground.
"Step Up" is featured as a B-side on the "In the End, Pt. 2" single as well as In the End: Live & Rare. A live version appears on the "Somewhere I Belong" single as well. Samples from "Step Up" were used in "Kyur4 th Ich", the remix of "Cure for the Itch" that appeared on Linkin Park's 2002 album Reanimation.
"It's Goin' Down", a song by The X-Ecutioners (which features Shinoda and Hahn), samples both "Step Up" and "Dedicated". "It's Goin' Down" has also been performed as part of a hip-hop medley with the songs "Nobody's Listening" and "Step Up" in 2004. A recording from their performance at The Roxy was released on the band's fourth annual fan club CD.
The beginning and ending of the hidden track was re-recorded as the beginning of the instrumental track "Session" which appears on Meteora.
"High Voltage" was later re-recorded during the Hybrid Theory sessions. Some lyrics in this version were rewritten, and a different chorus was used. This version appears as a B-side to the "One Step Closer" single, on the iTunes, Japanese, and special editions of "Hybrid Theory", the "In the End" EP, and "Frat Party at the Pankake Festival". A live performance of this version, recorded in London, was released on the band's second annual fan club CD. Also, a remix of this version appears on "Reanimation". It features Pharoahe Monch and DJ Babu and was remixed by Evidence.
The band made a 9-track demo CD after the release of the EP which featured re-recorded demo versions of "Carousel", "Part of Me", "And One", and six songs that would later be released on Hybrid Theory. These demos included minor differences from the songs on the EP, but "And One" remains the same on the demo. Jeff Duran was the first DJ in the United States to play "Carousel" on a commercial radio station (back when he was the afternoon drive DJ at KIXA 106.5).
"And One" and "Step Up" are the only songs from the EP that have been played live since the name change to "Linkin Park", although the re-recorded version of "High Voltage" from the Hybrid Theory sessions has been performed live as well.
In 2008, "And One" and "Part of Me" were released on an exclusive Best Buy compilation EP entitled Songs from the Underground.