Wretches and Kings

Album: A Thousand Suns (2010)

Songfacts®:

  • On this track, co-producer and vocalist Mike Shinoda reworks Public Enemy's "bass, how low will you go?" from "Bring The Noise," to "To save face, how low will you go?" Shinoda told NME that he wanted A Thousand Suns to be "three-dimensional" like his rap heroes.
    "I reference them in the song 'Wretches And Kings', there is a homage to [lead rapper] Chuck D on there," he said. "It's probably the most hip-hop song on the record and one of the most aggressive, but it feels like nothing I've ever heard before.

    Public Enemy were very three-dimensional with their records because although they seemed political, there was a whole lot of other stuff going on in there too. It made me think how three-dimensional I wanted our record to be without imitating them of course, and show where we were at creatively."
  • Linkin Park dropped in their own political message on this track and several others, through various samples. "(On that song) we used a sample of Mario Savio, who was a workers' rights activist that spoke out for people who were oppressed by their employers in the '60s," Shinoda said.
  • Linkin Park replaced their trademark guitar tone on A Thousand Suns with a myriad of effects-laden squelches and rumblings. Shinoda explained the band's new sonic direction to MTV News: "I heard a lot of comments about how certain songs on the record... fans were hearing them and going, 'Wow, those are so heavy!' and I even caught people talking about guitar on a song like 'Wretches and Kings,' for example, and somebody else would call them out, be like, 'Actually, I don't even think that's guitar. I think it's some kind of sample or something. We've been getting a lot of questions on that. Our approach on that stuff has been really something different for us. We didn't just plug the PRS [guitar] into the Mesa amp; it was like, we played these guitars through all these different effects, and we put them in the computer and we sampled them and played them like you would make a hip-hop song."

Comments: 2

  • Lucas from Nowhere, BrazilIt's basically the same as "Rebellion", but instead of insurgents against the government, it's workers against employers, this song encourages the workers to fight for their rights and against the oppression.
  • Zero from Nowhere, NjIs this a song about the economical struggle of the working class? Could someone please explain this song to me or give me their take on it? I'm very curious.
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