The Catalyst

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For the audiobook, see The Catalyst (Doctor Who audio).
"The Catalyst"
Single by Linkin Park
from the album A Thousand Suns and Medal of Honor
B-side "New Divide" (Live)
Released August 2, 2010 (2010-08-02)
Format CD single, digital download
Recorded 2008–2010
Genre Electronic rock,[1] techno[2]
Length 5:42
Label Warner Bros.
Writer(s) Linkin Park
Producer(s) Rick Rubin, Mike Shinoda
Certification Gold (RIAA)
Linkin Park singles chronology
"New Divide"
(2009)
"The Catalyst"
(2010)
"Waiting for the End"
(2010)
A Thousand Suns track listing
Audio sample
file info · help
Music video
"The Catalyst" on YouTube

"The Catalyst" is a song by American rock band Linkin Park. Released on August 2, 2010,[3][dated info] it is the first single from their fourth studio album, A Thousand Suns, which was released on September 8, 2010. The music video for the song, directed by the band's turntablist Joe Hahn, was released on August 26, 2010.[4]

"The Catalyst" is used in the trailer and credits of the video game Medal of Honor and also the opening song of Namco-Bandai's Arcade game, Mobile Suit Gundam: Extreme Vs.. It was also used in select commercials of the Discovery Channel series, Surviving the Cut. The song was also featured in the video game Linkin Park Revenge for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. "The Catalyst" has also been used in the advertisement for the 2011 movie The Lincoln Lawyer with Matthew McConaughey.

"The Catalyst", along with five other songs from A Thousand Suns, are featured in the "Linkin Park Track Pack" as downloadable content for the rhythm video game Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock. The track pack was released on October 19, 2010.

Background[edit]

From July 9, 2010 until July 25, 2010, Linkin Park (in collaboration with MySpace.com) held the contest "Linkin Park, Featuring You". In this contest, fans could download stems from the album's first single, "The Catalyst", remix the stems and/or write their own parts for the song on any instrument. The winner of this contest was Czesław "NoBraiN" Sakowski from Świdnica, Poland, whose remix was featured as an additional downloadable track on the Best Buy version of A Thousand Suns, and also available on Napster.[5][6] The liner notes for A Thousand Suns also credit Sakowski with "Supplemental Programming" on "When They Come for Me", the album's fifth track.

The top 20 remixes that were selected by the band are being considered for future use as b-sides and online downloads, as seen in the "Linkin Park, featuring YOU Winner" episode of the band's LPTV series.[7] Two of the remixes (by DIGITALOMAT and ill Audio) have since been released as via the band's webpage as free mp3 downloads, while two others (by Cale Pellick and DJ Endorphin) have been released via the iTunes EP version, released exclusively in Europe.[8]

"The Catalyst" has also been featured in the trailer of the video game Medal of Honor, which premiered on August 1, 2010 and was directed by Joe Hahn. It was also featured in the game's end credits.[9][10] The song was also featured in commercials of Discovery Channel's Shark Week in the summer of 2010. It was also used during the 16th annual X Games competition.[11] On September 15, 2010, Warner Music Japan announced that the song will be the official theme song of Mobile Suit Gundam: Extreme Vs.[12][13][14][15]

On August 31, 2010, it was announced that the band would perform the single live for the first time at the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards on September 12, 2010.[16] The venue of the debut live performance was Griffith Observatory, an iconic location used in Hollywood Movies.[17][18] However, the venue was held secret until the performance but was revealed to be a prominent landmark of Los Angeles.[19]

Music video[edit]

A behind-the-scenes screenshot of the music video, showing lead vocalists Chester Bennington and Mike Shinoda, lead guitarist Brad Delson and bassist Dave "Phoenix" Farrell throwing colored powder at each other.

The video for the song was filmed in July and was also directed by Joe Hahn. According to bassist Phoenix,[citation needed] the video contains references to the Bhagavad Gita and J. Robert Oppenheimer as well as the Christian apocalypse, which are three themes that are also used in the album.[20][21] When coming up with the idea for the video, Hahn said he thought about what it would be like if mankind had to accept their fate in a time of despair.[22]

The video premiered on August 26, 2010.[23] The video begins at a foggy town and Mike is seen singing in his hoodie in a rusted car and the scene then shows people running from the town. The entire town is covered in smoke. The band members are shown in remains of buildings, and Chester sings while submerged in water. Numerous people with gas masks are shown. Later in the video, the people clash with the gas-masked-men, throwing powder at each other, while the band members throw powder at each other as well. The video ends with Chester, still being submerged in water.

The video was released on their official YouTube channel last August 25, 2010.[24]

Covers[edit]

Pendulum covered the song on September 22, 2010 on BBC Radio 1 as part of the Live Lounge show.[25]

Reception[edit]

"The Catalyst" has received generally positive reception from critics. Jason Lipshutz of Billboard called the song a "nearly six-minute anthem of aggression", emphasizing on the transition from electronica to a slow dirge midway through the track. He also added that it recalls the vocal chants from Muse and political commentaries from Green Day, which the band fuses to create "an original, if a bit awkward, transition from twisty techno to fist-pumping rock".[2] Jason Treuen of The Music Network, in his review of A Thousand Suns, called the song "the best distillation of Linkin Park 2.0", and concluded by noting that "If [the album] was a film, this would be the victorious fight scene.".[26] The New York Post named "The Catalyst" the 139th best song of 2010, saying "An electronic rave transforms into a power ballad."[27]

Chart performance[edit]

"The Catalyst" debuted at No. 1 on the US Billboard Rock Songs chart, with 12.2 million audience impressions.[28] It became the first song in the chart's 14-month history to debut at the top spot.[28] This gave the band their second No. 1 single on the chart, tying them with Alice in Chains and Three Days Grace for most No. 1 singles on the chart. It also debuted at No. 3 on the US Alternative Songs chart, becoming the band's fourteenth top five single on the chart (placing them behind Green Day for most top five's on the chart).[28] In its third week on the chart, it reached No. 1, becoming the band's ninth No. 1 on the chart, and tied for second most across all artists on the chart.[29] Although the song charted high on the Rock and Alternative Songs charts, it was one of the band's lowest-charting songs on the US Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, peaking just outside the top ten at No. 12. Additionally, it debuted at No. 35 on the US Billboard Hot 100, selling 60,000 downloads in its first week, and became the band's ninth top forty single on the Hot 100. After its debut, it fell to No. 89, but "The Catalyst" rebounded to No. 72 and eventually rose to No. 27 upon the release of A Thousand Suns. The song debuted at No. 20 on the US Billboard Hot Digital Songs chart in its first week.[30] It achieved a Gold certification from the RIAA.[31]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Linkin Park.

CD single
No. Title Length
1. "The Catalyst"   5:44
2. "New Divide" (Live) 4:55
Digital download
No. Title Length
1. "The Catalyst"   5:42
NoBraiN remix single[32]
No. Title Length
1. "The Catalyst" (feat. NoBraiN) 4:22
iTunes EP[8]
No. Title Length
1. "The Catalyst"   5:42
2. "The Catalyst" ("Bobby Bloomfield" DIOYY? Remix) 3:06
3. "The Catalyst" (King Fantastic Remix) 4:04
4. "The Catalyst" (featuring DJ Endorphin) 5:00
5. "The Catalyst" (featuring Cale Pellick) 3:31
Promotional radio CD single
No. Title Length
1. "The Catalyst" (Radio Edit) 4:44
2. "The Catalyst" (Album Version) 5:43
3. "The Catalyst" (Pendulum Remix) 4:20

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (2010) Peak
position
Australian ARIA Singles Chart 33
Austria Top 40 18
Belgium Ultratip (Flanders) 6
Belgium Ultratip (Wallonia) 9
Canadian Hot 100 28
Czech Top 100 19
Dutch Single Top 100 95
European Hot 100 Singles 29
German Top100 Singles[33] 11
Hungary (Single Top 20)[34] 8
New Zealand RIANZ Singles Chart 27
Slovakia Top 100 46
Swedish Singles Top 60 31
Swiss Singles Top 100 29
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[35] 40
UK Rock Chart[36] 1
US Billboard Hot 100[37] 27
US Billboard Rock Songs[38] 1
US Billboard Alternative Songs[38] 1
US Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks[38] 12

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (2010) Position
Japanese Top 100[39] 96
Billboard Alternative Songs[40] 40
Billboard Rock Songs[41] 40

References[edit]

  1. ^ "LISTEN: Linkin Park Debut New Song". SPIN.com. August 2, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Music Charts, Most Popular Music, Music by Genre & Top Music Charts". Billboard. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  3. ^ Shinoda, Mike (July 8, 2010). "NEW ALBUM, "A THOUSAND SUNS," OUT SEPTEMBER 14". LinkinPark.com. Retrieved 2010-07-29. [dated info]
  4. ^ Hahn, Joe (August 25, 2010). ""The Catalyst" Music Video Premiere". LinkinPark.com. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  5. ^ Linkin Park (July 9, 2010). "LINKIN PARK, FEATURING YOU". LinkinPark.com. Retrieved 2010-07-29. 
  6. ^ "Linkin Park Best Buy Exclusive". Retrieved 2010-07-29. 
  7. ^ "Linkin Park, featuring YOU Winner". Retrieved 2010-09-06. 
  8. ^ a b "The Catalyst - EP". iTunes. Retrieved December 27, 2012. 
  9. ^ Hahn, Joe (July 27, 2010). ""THE CATALYST" IN MEDAL OF HONOR". LinkinPark.com. Retrieved 2010-07-29. 
  10. ^ "Medal of Honor (2010) – End Credits". 
  11. ^ "Music on ESPN X Games broadcasts". July 29, 2010. Retrieved 2010-07-29. 
  12. ^ COBS ONLINEçˇ¨é›†éƒ¨ (April 5, 2010). "史上初!リンキン・パークがガンダムとタイアップ!メンバーデザインのガンプラ付限定版が11月24日発売決定". Cobs.jp. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  13. ^ "Linkin Park/リンキン・パーク『ア・サウザンド・サンズ』". Wmg.jp. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  14. ^ Khiong, Ngee (September 15, 2010). "Ngee Khiong: Linkin Park Limited Gunpla & Music CD Announced". Ngeekhiong.blogspot.com. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  15. ^ "テーマ曲はLINKIN PARK!「機動戦士ガンダム エクストリームバーサス」9月28日稼動開始! | 公式ガンダム情報ポータルサイト「GUNDAM.INFO」". Gundam.info. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  16. ^ Montgomery, James (August 31, 2010). "Linkin Park Will Perform 'The Catalyst' At 2010 VMAs". MTV. Retrieved 2010-08-31. 
  17. ^ "Linkin Park's Surprise VMA Location: Story Behind Griffith Park Observatory". September 12, 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  18. ^ "Linkin Park Get Cosmic For VMA Performance". September 12, 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  19. ^ "Live Review Go Inside Linkin Park's Secret VMA Rehearsal!". August 31, 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-12. 
  20. ^ Kasko, Jordy (September 10, 2010). "Linkin Park – A Thousand Suns". Retrieved 2010-09-11. 
  21. ^ Treuen, Jason. "Album review: Linkin Park, A Thousand Suns (track-by-track)". The Music Network. Retrieved 2010-09-03. 
  22. ^ Hahn, Joe (August 25, 2010). ""The Catalyst" Music Video". LinkinPark.com. Retrieved 2010-08-28. 
  23. ^ Hahn, Joe (August 15, 2010). ""The Catalyst" Video Premiere – August 26". LinkinPark.com. Retrieved 2010-08-20. 
  24. ^ Linkin Park – The Catalyst (Official HD) on YouTube
  25. ^ Staples, Derek (September 23, 2010). "Check Out: Pendulum covers Linkin Park’s "The Catalyst"". consequenceofsound.net. Retrieved 2010-10-05. 
  26. ^ Treuen, Jason (September 3, 2010). "Album review: Linkin Park, A Thousand Suns (track-by-track)". The Music Network. Retrieved January 16, 2012. 
  27. ^ Dan Aquilante, Christina Amoroso, Joe Barracato, Billy Heller, Charlie Heller, Mary Huhn, Sara Lieberman, Stephen Lynch, Sheila McClear, Brian Niemietz, Maxine Shen, Mandy Stadtmiller, Sara Stewart, Reed Tucker, Elisabeth Vincentelli, Andy Wang (October 1, 2011). "The Top 210 Songs of 2010". New York Post. 
  28. ^ a b c Linkin Park Logs First No. 1 Debut On Rock Songs. Billboard (2009-06-20). Retrieved on 2013-08-25.
  29. ^ http://www.billboard.com/#/column/chartbeat/chart-highlights-adult-pop-alternative-songs-1004110760.story
  30. ^ Taylor Swift Makes Sparkling Hot 100 Entrance. Billboard (2010-08-11). Retrieved on 2013-08-25.
  31. ^ "RIAA Certifications". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved October 10, 2010. 
  32. ^ "The Catalyst (feat. NoBraiN) - Single" (in Japanese). iTunes.com. Retrieved May 30, 2013. 
  33. ^ "Wir sind Helden bringen Charts-Gold nach Hause – media control". Media-control.de. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  34. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Single (track) Top 10 lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége.
  35. ^ "18, 2010/ Archive Chart: September 18, 2010" UK Singles Chart.
  36. ^ "Radio 1 – Chart – UK Top 40 Rock Singles Chart". BBC. July 31, 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  37. ^ "Linkin Park Album & Song Chart History". Billboard. Retrieved November 9, 2010. 
  38. ^ a b c http://www.billboard.com/artist/307438/linkin+park/chart
  39. ^ "レコード協会調べ 2009年12月16日~2010年12月14日「着うたフル(R)」 2010年有料音楽配信「年間チャート」(通称:レコ協チャート)" [Record Association Analysis: December 16, 2009 – December 14, 2010 Full-length Cellphone Download 2010 paid digital sales "Yearly Chart" (Abbreviated: RIAJ Chart)]. RIAJ. December 20, 2010. Retrieved December 22, 2010. 
  40. ^ "Billboard 2010 Year-End Alternative Songs". Billboard. December 2010. Retrieved January 8, 2012. 
  41. ^ Billboard 2010 Year-End Top Rock Songs

External links[edit]