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Live: MIKE SHINODA // Roundhouse, London

Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda takes to The Roundhouse for an emotional intimate UK show.

Mike Shinoda - Roundhouse - 2019 - GIG GOER

The LaFontaines are energetic and boisterous. Mixing a combination of dance style music, rock and rap they are refreshingly unique. With pounding beats and intriguing vocals they create a great atmosphere for themselves. The crowd participation they are receiving is very impressive especially for an opening band, the crowd holding up lights at lead singer’s request. He is restless on stage, dancing around owning the Roundhouse and its crowd. Part way through the set the singer climbs over the barrier to join everyone in the audience, a massive pit engulfing him as people jump around shoving into one and other. The LaFontaines have definitely warmed the crowd up for Mike Shinoda after they waited out in the sleet for hours.

The LaFontaines - Roundhouse - GIG GOER

After releasing his latest album Post Traumatic Mike Shinoda is playing an incredibly intimate show for his only date in the UK at The Roundhouse in Camden. In Post Traumatic Mike off loads his feelings after the events of the past couple of years since Linkin Park frontman, Chester Bennington passed away. The album is a master piece redefining genres and mixing unlikely aspects of techno, rap and rock music to great brilliant pieces of music.

Mike Shinoda is phenomenal. His showmanship is unparalleled as the crowd feeds off his every word. Tonight’s set is a brilliant mixture of material from his recent release Post TraumaticLinkin Park songs and Fort Minor. ‘Are there any Fort Minor fans in the crowd? This song is for you, and it goes like this’, calls out Mike before playing Remember The Name. As the photographers leave the pit he says ‘Oh you guys the photographers are leaving, the photographers are walking out bye! Thank you for taking the pictures’ in very dramatic voice which was rather amusing.

In this set Mike blends rap, synth and rock perfectly. The next song is for all the Linkin Park fans as he starts playing When They Come For Me. He then goes on to talk about his family and how his children don’t understand when he needs to leave even just for a couple of hours let alone for longer lengths of time, before playing Sorry For Now. The crowd singing Roads Untraveled was mesmerising. Mike then does a mashup of Waiting For The End and Where’d You Go. For the next song Mike brings out Eg White, a guitarist who he wrote the title track of One More Light with which was tear jerkingly beautiful, the crowd chanting Chester’s name at the end. ‘Thank you for saying his name’, says Mike. This was the first time Mike has preformed One More Light since the tribute show for Chester and it is clearly very difficult for him. He then goes on to talk about Chester.

“I always knew how much of a fucking world class untouchable talent Chester was. He’s the type of person who you tell ‘Hey you’re fucking incredible’ or ‘That show was one of the best shows’, he wouldn’t let you compliment him and that was part of the problem. I would take a moment and stop him and say ‘Dude that show was fucking awesome’ and he’d be like ‘yeah yeah yeah’ (dismissively) and I’d stop him and be like ‘No seriously, I want you to listen to me, and look me in the eye right now. I am here in this real, very real and present moment, and I’m telling you that you did a fucking awesome job, so good job.’ And I could tell he went from ‘Yeah yeah whatever’, basically I don’t hear that to ‘okay I hear you thank you’.

Sometimes that’s what it takes if you have a friend or someone in your life who doesn’t want to hear nice things, who doesn’t want to hear compliments about them or how much they mean to people, that’s not good, that’s a problem. So you’ve got to get through to them and tell them ‘I really, really care. I really, really appreciate you.’ Can you do that for me? Can you do that for Chester?”

This then goes into In The End which was heart wrenching and incredibly emotional especially with the crowd singing the last lines ‘I tried so hard and got so far, but in the end it doesn’t even matter. I had to fall to lose it all, but in the end it doesn’t even matter’. Mike then gives our emotions a bit of a rest for a short while playing About You and Over Again from his latest album Post Traumatic, both songs full of angst and energy.

Mike comes back from a huge encore of Battle Symphony, Nobody Can Save Me, Make It Up As I Go, Castle Of Glass and more! Things are crazier than ever before for Good Goodbye mixed with Bleed It Out. The night concludes with the brilliant solo track Running From My Shadow. Tonight was an incredibly surreal experience.

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Photos: Dani Willgress