Castle Of Glass

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"Castle Of Glass"
Single by Linkin Park
from the album Living Things
B-side Lost In The Echo (KillSonik Remix)
Working title Castle Of Glass
Recorded 2011-2012
Released November 12, 2012 (Radio)
February 1, 2013 (CD Single)
Format CD, Digital
Length 03:25
Stems Stagelight: Linkin Park Edition[1]
Neko Keyboard Sounds and Samples[2]
Open Labs SoundSlate Pro
Time signature 4/4
Tempo 108
Key C# Minor
Live debut December 7, 2012
Last played October 27, 2017
Writer(s) Linkin Park
Producer(s) Mike Shinoda, Rick Rubin
Label Warner Bros.
Linkin Park singles chronology

Powerless (2012) Castle Of Glass (2012) A Light That Never Comes (2013)

Living Things track listing
  1. Lost In The Echo
  2. In My Remains
  3. Burn It Down
  4. Lies Greed Misery
  5. I'll Be Gone
  6. Castle Of Glass
  7. Victimized
  8. Roads Untraveled
  9. Skin To Bone
  10. Until It Breaks
  11. Tinfoil
  12. Powerless

"Castle Of Glass" is the sixth track off of Linkin Park's fifth studio album, Living Things, and the third single to be released from it. The track was used during the promotion of Danger Close Game's Medal of Honor: Warfighter, which is the third song the band has contributed to the franchise. "The Catalyst" was used for the 2010 Medal Of Honor game, and "Lies Greed Misery" was also used for Medal Of Honor: Warfighter.

The single was released on November 12, 2012 with proceeds going to the Help for Heroes campaign.[3] The physical single was released on February 1, 2013[4] after being pushed back several times.[5] A digital EP was released on March 22, 2013 in Europe.[6]


Pretty much everything through the first chorus remained unchanged from the initial demo version of the song to the final album released track as revealed by Mike Shinoda.[7] He says it is one of the last things to come from the A Thousand Suns sessions. "[...] Cause I don't think I've said that before, but it was one of those things where I'd written the demo and it was very similar to what ended up being the actual final song. It just didn't have live drums really. Some of the words were a little bit different... but I remember thinking 'okay, this is great but it doesn't fit on A Thousand Suns. It's gonna be kinda starting the next record.' So I put it away. I put it on a hard drive. I played it for Brad but I didn't really play for the other guys in the band and I don't think I played it for Rick Rubin either. So yeah, so it became the next, when we started recording the album, this is one of the first songs that we started working on."[8]

Billbaord said, "And "Castle of Glass" began as a folk song with a Johnny Cash rhythm that, as the band added parts, took on more of an indie rock edge with futuristic samples. Shinoda's vocal on the first verse and chorus, however, came from his demo." Mike explained, "Rick told us while we were in the studio this time, he is positive no other band writes the way we do. He wasn't saying it was better or worse, just that it's different."[9]

Shinoda also cited "Castle Of Glass" as an example of Living Things's more personal themes, stating "This album tends to be a little more of a personal record, compared to the last record, which I guess I would say was a little more political. And this song is an example of that; the lyrics can have multiple meanings, be it a soldier’s story [or] an individual at home, dealing with a personal relationship. [And the video] is really mostly narrative; and it’s kind of the story of the families and the soldiers that this game is based on."[10]

Chester Bennington talked about the song, and how different the ways in which he and Shinoda had interpreted the lyrics, saying "You can look at a song like 'CASTLE OF GLASS,' which for me, has one of the most interesting opposing points of view. When Mike was talking about the lyrics, at one point he had said, 'You know, it's kind of like finding yourself as this broken part of this big machine, and feeling like you're not part of that, or trying to find your place in the bigger scheme of things.' And that can mean a solider coming home from war, and trying to fit back into society, or a person getting out of prison, or whatever. And here I am, envisioning this big, beautiful glass castle on a hill, and, like, unicorns. I'm thinking like 'Yeah, if you zoom in, I'm this little broken part of this castle that no one knows about, and I may seem like flawed and not important, but when you back up and look at the big picture, you're part of this really beautiful thing that keeps you together. And it was a really interesting twist; I think a lot of our lyrics can be taken from multiple perspectives, depending on what you want the song to be about ... they can be felt on so many different levels."[11]

Owen Pallett, who worked on "I'll Be Gone", was initially going to work on two songs off Living Things, but ended up only having time for one. Shinoda wound up composing the strings for the other song. "Castle Of Glass", being the only song on the album for which Shinoda is credited for strings in the album booklet, is more than likely the other song.[12]

Mike Shinoda was invited by Electronic Arts to compose the music in Medal of Honor: Warfighter to "add depth and emotion" to the game.[13] He contributed with the tracks "NOC Out" and "Saa'iq". The latter contains an instrumental excerpt from "Castle Of Glass".

While on tour for Post Traumatic, Mike explained that he picked "Castle Of Glass" for him to play because it felt natural for him to do. He explained, "It was usually the songs that when I did it, they were written with my voice already in it, like in the DNA. An easy version of that is "Castle Of Glass", the original demo was just me. I made the whole track and I made the whole thing and I sang the whole thing. And then piece-by-piece we started adding other people. We added Rob's drum parts, I don't think we actually replaced many of my guitars, but then we added Chester on the chorus and stuff like that. But the meat and potatoes of that demo was me singing the song."[14]


"Castle Of Glass" was remixed by band member Mike Shinoda for Linkin Park's second remix album, Recharged, and was included in Criterion Games's Need For Speed Rivals. When talking about his remix for the song, Shinoda said "My CASTLE OF GLASS remix was a journey; the verse section was the first thing I made, which originally lived in a Justice/Daft Punk kind of world. But I didn’t want the song to be two-dimensional or a rip-off, so I dirtied up the sounds and added a little of a prog-rock kind of feel. Then I added the ambient intro. After that, I had the idea to take it somewhere really unexpected, which is where the last movement came in. I think that last section is where the real musicality and magic happens, introducing the dreamy synths, new chord changes, vocoder vocals, guitar, and piano."[15][16]


CD Single

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1 Castle Of Glass Linkin Park 3:25
2 Lost In The Echo (KillSonik Remix) Linkin Park 5:09

Digital Single

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1 Castle Of Glass Linkin Park 3:25
2 Lost In The Echo (KillSonik Remix) Linkin Park 5:09
3 Burn It Down (Live Rock Im Park 2012) Linkin Park 4:00
4 Lies Greed Misery (Live Rock Im Park 2012) Linkin Park 2:30

Music Video

The music video for "Castle Of Glass" started filming on July 25, 2012 and was made in partnership with the video game publisher EA in support of their first-person shooter, Medal of Honor: Warfighter, which the video features several clips from. The video was released on October 10, 2012 to Linkin Park's official YouTube page. The video depicts a young boy dealing with the loss of his father, who was killed in action. The band is shown performing in a violent storm, with pieces of shattered glass swirling around them. Near the end of the video, the boy begins looking through his father's belongings, inspiring him to follow in his father's footsteps and joining the military as a SEAL. The end of the video shows a man telling a young girl that her father, too, had died in battle. The video's final shot showcase a quote from Winston Churchill, stating "All great things are simple, and many can be expressed in single words: freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope."

All of the band's performance was shot in front a green screen, with production being handled by Digital Domain and Mothership. The video relied heavily on CGI for the band's sequences, and continues the recurring post-apocalyptic theme in the videos for Living Things of the world falling apart, primarily the opening shot of Mike Shinoda, where the room he's standing in crumbles to the ground, revealing the storm that the band performs in.

The description of the video on Digital Domain's website reads: "Digital Domain and Mothership partnered with Electronic Arts to produce Linkin Park's emotional music video created for the launch of the "Medal of Honor: Warfighter" game, featuring live-action, gameplay, cinematics and sophisticated CG animation. Artists created 'the void,' an environment complete with violent storms that rain shattered glass and recreated the live-action living room set in CG, to shatter and crumble it as the emotional core of the story breaks loose. Digital Domain and Mothership captured gameplay action and created virtual humans for the cinematics using our in-house virtual production studio."[17]


Note: Only the date of the very first release of each version is listed.


Title Album Length Recorded Released Notes
Castle Of Glass Living Things

Castle Of Glass

3:25 2012 June 20, 2012
Castle Of Glass (Official Video) 4:50 2012 October 10, 2012
  • Extended intro.
  • Slightly different instrumental through the first half of verse one.
  • Short ambient outro.
Castle Of Glass (Radio Edit) Castle Of Glass (FR Radio CD) 3:05 2012 2013
  • Shortened intro.
Castle Of Glass Hook Ideas Hybrid Party Of A Thousand Things 0:24 2012
  • Original seed.
  • Released on LPLive for free download on August 5, 2019.
Castle Of Glass (Instrumental) Living Things (Acapellas and Instrumentals)

Castle Of Glass (Denmark Promo)

3:25 2012 September 11, 2012
  • Official instrumental version.
  • There are glitches at 0:36, 1:10, 1:28, and 2:36.
Castle Of Glass (Acapella) Living Things (Acapellas and Instrumentals)

Castle Of Glass (Denmark Promo)

2:49 2012 September 11, 2012
  • Official acapella version.


Title Album Length Recorded Released Notes
Castle Of Glass (M. Shinoda Remix) Recharged 6:20 2013 October 24, 2013
  • Remix by Mike Shinoda.
Castle Of Glass - Linkin Park Remix Living Things Remixes 4:53 2013
  • Remix by Mike Shinoda.
  • Different beginning.
  • Same middle as Recharged from 01:16 to 03:08.
  • Completely different ending.
Castle Of Glass Remix Hybrid Party Of A Thousand Things 1:14 2013
  • Remix by Mike Shinoda.
  • Instrumental demo.
  • Released on LPLive for free download on August 5, 2019.
Castle Of Glass Remix2 Hybrid Party Of A Thousand Things 1:26 2013
  • Remix by Mike Shinoda.
  • Instrumental demo.
  • Released on LPLive for free download on August 5, 2019.


"Castle Of Glass" was rehearsed for two weeks prior to its debut at the 10th Annual VGAs, where it was nominated for "Best Song In Game" in Medal of Honor: Warfighter. It was debuted in December 2012, at the Spike Video Game Awards and quickly replaced "In My Remains" in the setlist starting from the Vegas show in 2013. The studio version was played consistently until the Concert For The Philippines in January 2014, where the band brought out Ann and Nancy Wilson from the band Heart to sing on the song, marking the first time female musicians have ever joined Linkin Park on stage for a song.

Once the cycle for The Hunting Party started at KFMA Day 2014, a new version of "Castle Of Glass" debuted, with intro, the first verse and chorus coming from the studio track, and the bridge and ending coming from "Castle Of Glass (M. Shinoda Remix)". This was dubbed the "Experience Version". It also featured a short piano transition outro leading into "LOATR/SOTD/Iridescent". Beginning with the band's second show in Brazil, new elements were added to the new live version of "Castle Of Glass". Two speeches featured on A Thousand Suns, from "Wisdom, Justice, And Love" and "The Radiance", were added to the bridge and piano outro, respectively. The sample from "Wisdom, Justice, And Love" contained only the first two lines of the speech, while the sample from "The Radiance" was the whole speech. At one show in Germany, the band extended the intro of "Castle Of Glass" to allow the crowd to clap along with it.

The "Experience Version" of "Castle of Glass" carried over to the One More Light tour, with the song being played far earlier in the set than ever before. The song received a new ending with Joe scratching a sample of Chester screaming "break" from "One Step Closer" over a newly remixes section. Mike started rapping over the new ending starting with the band's stop in Peru, where he rapped the first verse of "A Place For My Head". He would begin rotating in verses from "It's Goin' Down", "A Light That Never Comes", and "Petrified" during the European leg of the tour. At the memorial event for Chester Bennington, the studio version of "Castle Of Glass" was performed for the first time since the end of the Living Things cycle, albeit in a different key and with a slightly new arrangement courtesy of Adrian Young, Tom Dumont and Tony Kanal of Dreamcar. Alanis Morisette joined the band for the performance.

Mike used "Castle Of Glass" as a part of his Fort Minor setlist upon its return in 2015. Starting with his performance in Los Angeles, Mike performed a remix of his own remix of the song, and mashed up "Kenji" with the bridge of the remix, performing the entire song.

"Castle Of Glass" has maintained a consistent slot at Mike Shinoda's solo shows. At the Identity LA performance, Linkin Park band mate Joe Hahn joined Mike for the song. Mike also played guitar on the song at this show. Beginning with his show at Amoeba Records, Mike performed a new arrangement of the song in a different key and with him playing piano. For a few of the west coast shows during the Monster Energy Outbreak Tour, Linkin Park bandmate Phoenix would join Mike and the band for the song.


Linkin Park

Last Updated: June 9, 2020

Type Notes First Played Last Played
Album Version December 7, 2012 January 11, 2014
Experience Version
  • It transitions from the album version to the "Recharged" remix after the first chorus
May 24, 2014 July 6, 2017
  • Piano Outro Transition
May 24, 2014 November 14, 2015
  • Bridge w/ partial "Wisdom, Justice, And Love" speech
  • Piano Outro Transition w/ "The Radiance" speech
October 19, 2014 November 14, 2015
  • Extended Intro for crowd to clap along to
November 9, 2014 November 9, 2014
  • 2017 Ending
May 6, 2017 May 9, 2017
  • 2017 Ending w/ "A Place For My Head" Verse 1
May 11, 2017 July 3, 2017
  • 2017 Ending w/ "It's Goin' Down" Verse 1
June 12, 2017 June 27, 2017
  • 2017 Ending w/ "A Light That Never Comes" Verse 1
June 15, 2017 June 15, 2017
  • 2017 Ending w/ "Petrified" Verse 1
June 29, 2017 July 6, 2017
Hollywood Bowl Version
  • Different arrangement
  • Different key (one step higher)
October 27, 2017 October 27, 2017

Fort Minor

Last Updated: June 9, 2020

Type Notes First Played Last Played
Castle Of Glass/Kenji
  • Mashup
  • Different take of the "Recharged" remix
  • w/ Kenji's verses and speeches
June 29, 2015 September 8, 2015

Mike Shinoda

Last Updated: June 9, 2020

Type Notes First Played Last Played
Post Traumatic Tour Version
  • Different key (two and a half steps higher)
  • Additional piano part
  • Backing tracks used for other instruments, only piano was live
  • No guitar
  • Vocoder added from bridge until the end
June 14, 2018 July 28, 2018
  • Different key (two and a half steps higher)
  • Additional piano part
  • With live guitar and drums
  • Vocoder added from bridge until the end
August 7, 2018 September 8, 2019

Live Guests

Linkin Park

Last Updated: June 9, 2020

Guests First Appearance Last Appearance Notes
Ann Wilson and Nancy Wilson (Heart) January 11, 2014 January 11, 2014
Benjamin Chandler October 18, 2014 October 19, 2014 Replacing Brad Delson
Warren Willis September 03, 2015 September 06, 2015 Replacing Joe Hahn
Alanis Morissette; Tom Dumont, Tony Kanal and Adrian Young (No Doubt/Dreamcar) October 27, 2017 October 27, 2017

Mike Shinoda

Last Updated: June 9, 2020

Guests First Appearance Last Appearance Notes
Joe Hahn (Linkin Park) May 12, 2018 May 12, 2018
Phoenix (Linkin Park) October 30, 2018 November 6, 2018


"Castle Of Glass" was first released to radio in late 2012 internationally, including places like the United Kingdom, Finland, and Denmark. The physical single was initially slated to be released on December 10, 2012, but was later postponed February 4, 2013. Despite that, it was released on February 1, 2013 for unknown reasons. The digital single was released on March 22, 2013. The song was certified Gold in Austria and reached Platinum in Germany, Italy, and Switzerland.

The song was heavily used in promotion for EA's Medal of Honor: Warfighter, and was featured in the end credits of the game.

On April 9, 2013, the band announced a design contest for "Castle Of Glass" through talent house, offering a cash prize of $500, having the design printed on shirts that would be sold on tour and in the official merch store, and sending the winner a signed shirt with the design on it.[18] On June 4, 2013, the winner was announced to be Dika Toolkit with her design "Lost", who actually got a $1,000 cash prize in addition to the signed shirt. They also awarded Marcos Vinicius Feijo's design "Silver Wing" with a $500 cashed prize and a one-off signed print of his design.[19]

Awards and Nominations

Year Award Category Status
2012 Spike Video Game Awards Best Song in a Game (Medal of Honor: Warfighter) Nominated


Linkin Park

  • Chester Bennington: vocals
  • Rob Bourdon: drums, backing vocals
  • Brad Delson: guitars, bass, backing vocals
  • Joseph Hahn: records, sampling, backing vocals
  • Mike Shinoda: emcee, vocals, beats, sampling
  • Phoenix: bass


  • Mike Shinoda and Rick Rubin: producer
  • Manny Marroquin: mixer
  • Brian "Big Bass" Gardner: mastering


  • Brandon Parvini at Ghost Town Media: design
  • The Uprising Creative: layout



In Other Media

  • "Castle Of Glass" is featured in the 2012 videogame Medal Of Honor: Warfighter.
  • A remix of "Castle Of Glass" by Mike Shinoda is featured in the 2013 videogame Need For Speed Rivals.

Cover Versions

South African alternative rock band City Of Heroes recorded an in-studio live cover of "Castle Of Glass" which was uploaded to their YouTube channel on June 6, 2013.[28]

External Links


  1. "Stagelight" Music / Re: "Bruiser" & More Demos - Newswire - Linkin Park Live, December 10, 2012
  2. Linkin Park Fans: A Rare Opportunity to Own a Piece of | Reverb News, April 02, 2018
  3. Linkin Park to Release New Single CASTLE OF GLASS November 12th - Sales to Benefit Help for Heroes C | LP Association Forums, October 30, 2012
  4. album pop - Warner Music Switzerland
  5. Linkin Park to Release New Single CASTLE OF GLASS November 12th - Sales to Benefit Help for Heroes C | Page 2 | LP Association Forums, November 19, 2012
  6. CASTLE OF GLASS 4 Track EP to be Released Digitally March 22nd | LP Association Forums, March 12, 2013
  7. MTV, May 2012
  8. MOON HMZ 🌈 on Twitter: "Castle of Glass was written during the A Thousand Suns sessions. Here's Mike talking about it. @mikeshinoda @LPLive… " ., August 31, 2019
  9. Billboard: Linkin Park Use New Marketing Techniques to Connect with Fans, June 15, 2012
  10. MTV, August 2012
  11. MTV, June 2012
  12. NME, April 2012
  13. Linkin Park frontman composed Medal of Honor Warfighter score - GameSpot, August 03, 2012
  14. Spin Radio: Mike Shinoda | Interview, October 20, 2018
  15. WhiteRaverRafting, November 2013
  16. ArtisanNewsService, December 2013
  17. Linkin Park “Castle of Glass” | Advertising | Digital Domain
  18. Design for LP "CASTLE OF GLASS" - Linkin Park Live
  19. Design for Linkin Park - talenthouse
  20. DeviantArt, 2012
  21. DeviantArt, 2013
  22. Charles Ratteray*'s storyboard art | Film/TV
  23. Charles Ratteray*'s storyboard art | Film/TV
  24. Charles Ratteray*'s storyboard art | Film/TV
  25. Charles Ratteray*'s storyboard art | Film/TV
  26. Charles Ratteray*'s storyboard art | Film/TV
  27. Charles Ratteray*'s storyboard art | Film/TV
  28. Linkin Park - Castle of Glass Acoustic (Cover by City of Heroes) - YouTube, June 06, 2013