Difference between revisions of "Papercut"

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| Format        = CD, Cassette
| Format        = CD, Cassette
| Length        = 03:04
| Length        = 03:04
| Stems      = "Parts" CD<br/>Open Labs SoundSlate Pro
| Stems      = "Parts" CD<br/>LPConcerts<ref>[https://www.blabbermouth.net/news/linkin-park-offering-free-college-concert-in-latest-contest/ Linkin Park Offering Free College Concert In Latest Contest - Blabbermouth.net], March 17, 2008</ref><br/>Open Labs SoundSlate Pro
| Time signature      = 4/4
| Time signature      = 4/4
| Tempo      = 75
| Tempo      = 75

Revision as of 05:54, 9 August 2019

Single by Linkin Park
from the album Hybrid Theory
Working title Paper Cut
Recorded 2000
Released June 18, 2001 (Radio)
September 25, 2001 (CD Single)
Format CD, Cassette
Length 03:04
Stems "Parts" CD
Open Labs SoundSlate Pro
Time signature 4/4
Tempo 75
Key C# Minor
Live debut Unknown
Last played October 27, 2017
Writer(s) Brad Delson, Chester Bennington, Joseph Hahn, Mike Shinoda, Rob Bourdon
Producer(s) Don Gilmore
Label Warner Bros.
Linkin Park singles chronology

Crawling (2001) Papercut (2001) In The End (2001)

Hybrid Theory track listing
  1. Papercut
  2. One Step Closer
  3. With You
  4. Points Of Authority
  5. Crawling
  6. Runaway
  7. By Myself
  8. In The End
  9. A Place For My Head
  10. Forgotten
  11. Cure For The Itch
  12. Pushing Me Away

"Papercut" is the first track on the album Hybrid Theory. It was released in the UK as the album's third single on September 25, 2001.


According to Mike Shinoda, "Papercut" was a song that came together relatively quickly[2] and never lost its working title.[3][4]

Brad, Chester and Mike all have mentioned "Papercut" as being their favorite song at some point.[5][6] Brad explained why: ""Paper Cut" is my favorite right now because I think it best integrates all our influences into one song and does it in a way that's tasteful and cohesive. In other words, one criticism that people have leveled at existing bands is that their songs don't always sound organic, that some of the songs might sound forced. And our goal has always been to integrate these influences in the most seamless way, and I think Paper Cut does that really well."[7][8] Chester went as far as calling it the "identity of the band," saying, "When we got to that song, the chorus was so dope and the words behind it were so cool, that I kind of didn't need to do much melodically until we flipped it up at the end. That was a lot of fun; I felt like that song really captured what the vibe of the band about."[9]

Speaking about the different elements on the song, Mike Shinoda said, "When mixing a Linkin Park song, there are always layers, and they major issue is figuring out what will the hierarchy of sounds will be. On our earlier material, live drums, guitar and bass took the stage. Still, if you listen to the beginning of Hybrid Theory, “Papercut” had jungle and hip-hop elements in the song. [Linkin Park's] intention was always to show people what we liked to listen to. As time passes, the balance gets shifted in different directions when our interests change. The sound of Linkin Park at any given time is usually a reflection where we’re at at the moment. Of course, we try and stay respectful of whatever genre it is that we’re playing with. The final sound of our tracks is not a “surface-y” thing, its definitely more analytical."[10] He afirmmed the reason they put together different types of music isn't to sell records, it's because they actually enjoy it. "At least for us, if we’re ever dabbling with something that unfamiliar to us, there’s a real honesty there with our guys. Back in the day with Hybrid Theory, we were plugging in a little jungle and drum & bass thing into our songs—like “Papercut” you can really hear it. I don’t think I can even name 10 jungle songs or artists off the top of my head, but at the time we were so into it. We were getting all these sets of all this stuff, these 90-minute mixes of shit that we couldn’t name, and it was awesome."[11]


CD Single

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1 Papercut Bennington Chester Charles, Bourdon Robert G, Delson Brad, Hahn Joseph, Shinoda Mike 3:05
2 Points Of Authority (Live on BBC Radio One) Bennington, Bourdon, Delson, Hahn, Shinoda 3:25
3 Papercut (Live) Bennington, Bourdon, Delson, Hahn, Shinoda 3:12
4 Papercut (Video) Bennington, Bourdon, Delson, Hahn, Shinoda 3:13

Cassette Single

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1 Papercut Bennington, Bourdon, Delson, Hahn, Shinoda 3:05
2 Points Of Authority (Live on BBC Radio One) Bennington, Bourdon, Delson, Hahn, Shinoda 3:25

Music Video

The music video, co-directed by Nathan "Karma" Cox and Joseph Hahn, was originally made for the UK, but premiered in the US during a Family Values Tour special. The production company they worked with was Anonymous Content.

Joe has said the video isn't one of his favorites, calling it "a mishmosh of two guys kind of throwing ideas out there" and saying it was intended to be a lot darker but the label wanted a different thing, completely diluting it.[12]


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


Title Album Length Recorded Released Notes
Papercut Hybrid Theory 3:04 2000 October 24, 2000
Papercut Papercut 3:05 2000 September 25, 2001
  • No guitar feedback at the end.
Papercut Hybrid Theory 6-Track Demo 3:09 2000
  • The CD dates from April 25, 2000.
  • No drumming in the intro.
  • Louder background synth.
  • Different vocal take.
  • Ends on a different lyric.
  • Released on LPAssociation for free download on September 15, 2012.
Paper Cut Studio Finals 5/7/00 3:11 2000
  • The CD dates from July 5, 2000.
  • Louder background synth.
  • Drums during bridge are louder.
  • Scratching extends into the bridge.
  • Released on LPLive for free download on April 9, 2011.
Papercut Hybrid Theory - Instrumentals 3:07 2000
  • Official instrumental version.


Title Album Length Recorded Released Notes
Ppr:kut Reanimation 3:26 2001 July 30, 2002
  • Remix by Cheapshot and Vin Skully (credited as Jubacca).
  • Features vocals by Rasco and Planet Asia.
Ppr:kut "Reanimation" Internal Demo 2:56 2001
  • The CD dates from late January or February 2002.
  • Remix by Cheapshot and Vin Skully.
  • Very few things in common with the final remix, like the arrangement of the guitar parts in certain spots and the bass part that comes in during the bridge.
  • Released on LPLive for free download on March 21, 2013.
Big Pimpin'/Papercut Collision Course 2:36 2004 November 30, 2004
  • Mash-up with Jay-Z.
  • Samples Hossam Ramzy's "Khusara Khusara".
Big Pimpin'/Papercut Collision Course (Clean) 2:36 2004 November 30, 2004
Linkin Park Vs. David Banner Rock Phenomenon 2:35 2006 March 27, 2006
  • Mash-up of David Banner's "Like A Pimp" with Linkin Park's "Papercut" created by DJ Vlad and Roc Raida.
  • "Like A Pimp" samples The Showboys' "Drag Rap" and UGK's "Take It Off". This last one samples Barry White's "Love Serenade" and Beside's "Change the Beat (Female Version)".
Papercut (8 Bit Rebellion Version) 8-Bit Rebellion! Ringtones 0:29 2010 April 17, 2010
  • 8-bit version.
  • Intro only.
Papercut (8 Bit Rebellion Version) 8-Bit Rebellion! Ringtones 0:31 2010 April 17, 2010
  • 8-bit version.
  • Chorus only.
Ppr:kut Reanimation - Instrumentals 3:26 2001
  • Official instrumental version.


Title Album Length Recorded Released Notes
Papercut (Live From The BBC) Crawling

Hybrid Theory (iTunes)

3:21 January 12, 2001 April 30, 2001
  • From Radio One's "Evening Session". First transmission date: January 11, 2001.
  • This recording is sometimes mistaken by fans as a studio demo version.
Papercut (Live) Papercut

Hybrid Theory (Special Edition)

In The End (JP EP)


3:12 March 24, 2001 September 25, 2001
  • Produced for Radio One.
  • Labeled "Papercut (Live At Docklands Arena, London)" on Hybrid Theory and In The End.
  • Labeled "Papercut (Recorded Live At Docklands)" on Compilation.
Papercut Live In Texas 3:06 August 02, 2003

August 03, 2003

November 18, 2003
  • Recorded live August 2nd 2003 at Reliant Stadium in Houston, TX and August 3rd 2003 at Texas Stadium in Irving, TX on the Summer Sanitarium Tour.
Big Pimpin'/Papercut Collision Course July 18, 2004 November 30, 2004
  • Censored.
  • DVD only.
Big Pimpin'/Papercut LP Underground 5.0 2:32 July 02, 2005 November 21, 2005
  • Recorded live at Live 8 in Philadelphia, PA. July 2, 2005.
  • Jay-Z accidentally sang the beginning of verse two when the first chorus begins. This was fixed on the CD.
Papercut (11/18/07 LP Live Shanghai) Minutes To Midnight (Asian Tour Edition) 3:47 November 18, 2007 November 21, 2007
  • Downloadable MP3.
  • Download codes expired on December 17, 2008.
Papercut Road To Revolution: Live At Milton Keynes

Hybrid Theory (Mastered For iTunes)

3:50 June 29, 2008 November 21, 2008
  • Bonus content on the Road To Revolution DVD. Audio released on January 15, 2013 as part of the "Mastered For iTunes" version of Hybrid Theory as "Papercut (Live At Milton Keynes)".
  • Filmed at the National Bowl, Milton Keynes June 29, 2008.
Papercut Live In Madrid 3:18 November 07, 2010 April 1, 2011
Papercut (Live) iTunes Festival: London 2011 - EP 3:15 July 04, 2011 July 8, 2011
Papercut Live In Red Square 3:11 June 23, 2011 July 21, 2011
  • Released as a prize for the "Iridescent" "Super-Fun Trading Fun-Cards" game. After all six cards were collected, the person could enter the codes of each card at linkinpark.com to get a free download of the full show.
Papercut (Live From Paris, 2010) Hybrid Theory - Live Around The World 3:08 October 25, 2010 May 31, 2012
Papercut Live At Admiralspalast Berlin, Germany June 05, 2012 March 29, 2013
Papercut (Live At Download Festival 2014) Hybrid Theory - Live At Download Festival 2014 3:13 June 14, 2014 August 12, 2014


"Papercut" has been a staple in Linkin Park setlists since 2000. Throughout the first half of 2000, it served as the opening song, after a shortened version of "Cure For The Itch". After "A Place For My Head" took over as the show opener for the latter half of the year it moved down to a mid-set position. In 2001, the band added an interlude before the song, entitled the "LEE Interlude", which was performed until the Ozzfest. The song remained in its mid-set position throughout the year the rest of the year. It retained its position in 2002, as well.

The song returned on the Meteora touring cycle in 2003, where it continued to be performed mid-set. Beginning at Smokeout and carrying out through the rest of 2003, "Papercut" finally escaped the middle of the set and was moved to the beginning of the show, opening them for the first time on its own (in 2000, it succeeded "Cure for The Itch") with a brand new intro, featuring Joe, primarily. As 2004 rolled around, the song returned to its regular position at the middle of the set. Beginning on the Meteora International Tour, in the summer of 2004, the song received a new extended intro, which consisted of strings and the beat of the song. In 2005, the song was performed as its Collision Course counterpart, "Big Pimpin'/Papercut", both performances with Jay-Z. The song was moved further down into the set in 2006, and gained a new, longer version of its extended intro from 2004.

The song returned for the Minutes To Midnight touring cycle, where its setlist position stayed the same and it retained its long intro from 2006. The song was featured in all three setlists on Projekt Revolution 2007 and the following tours. In 2008, for the first time, "Papercut" was consistently dropped. It was not featured in Set T, Set S, or the original draft of Set R (it was added in to Set R in Frankfurt, Germany). On the preceding Minutes To Midnight North American Tour, Chester fell sick in the middle of the tour, causing the band to drop "Points Of Authority". In its place, they added in "Papercut" and added the extended outro of "Points Of Authority" onto "Papercut". On the summer European tour, the song was only performed on Set X and Set Z, whereas it was dropped in Set Y. The song remained consistent in the Projekt Revolution 2008 versions of those three setlists, as well. In 2009, the song was dropped altogether from the setlists on the International Tour. However, at the show in Macao, China, the first verse of "Papercut" was performed over the extended intro of "Bleed It Out".

"Papercut" returned on the A Thousand Suns touring cycle, starting on their South American Tour. It was performed after "Wretches And Kings", making it the second "full" song to be performed in the set. The song made its way to the following A Thousand Suns European Tour, but halfway through the tour (starting in Köln, Germany), it began being rotated with "Lying From You", as a response to the band reading a thread on the LPLive forums ("The Messenger" was rotated with "Leave Out All The Rest", too). In 2011, in Atlanta, Georgia, "Papercut" opened after "The Requiem" and "The Radiance", making it the first time since 2003 that the song had opened a show. Throughout the tour, the song traded places with "New Divide" and "Faint" as the show openers. With the debut of Set B-11, "Papercut" found its way to the encore for the first time ever. The song retained its opening and encore positions throughout the rest of the A Thousands Suns World Tour.

In 2012, beginning the Living Things World Tour, "Papercut" was performed third in the headlining set, and second to last after "One Step Closer" and before "Bleed It Out" in the festival set. On the Honda Civic Tour, the song became part of a medley, featuring a shortened version of "Lying From You" transitioning directly into a shortened version of "Papercut". Both halves of the medley went from intro through first chorus to the bridge through the outro. The medley featured in both the original versions of Set A and Set C, and Set B. In Set A, it was originally performed after the "Victimized (w/ QWERTY)" mashup, before the medley was split up into the full versions of both songs, where "Papercut" was featured in the third slot of the setlist. In Set C, it was performed in the same spot originally, but the medley was again split, with "Papercut" being performed second in the encore. Set B is the only setlist in which the medley stayed consistent, when the band performed it in the encore, before the final song, "One Step Closer". As Set A and Set B moved onto 2013, "Papercut" remained in its position in Set A. Halfway through the Living Things New Zealand and Australian Tour, starting at the Soundwave performance in Flemington, Victoria, "Papercut" was added to Festival Set B after "A Place For My Head" in order to take advantage of their full set time. The new, full version of Set B did not debut until the Living Things Asian Tour, in Pasay, Philippines, where a full version of "Lying From You" replaced the medley in the encore.

On The Hunting Party World Tour, "Papercut" was a constantly performed song throughout the tour. Throughout all of 2014 shortened version of the song, which lacked the second verse and second chorus, transitioning directly from a shortened, instrumental version of "Blackout". At the Stars Of The Season Gaia, the band jammed to the first verse of "Papercut", with guest Luis Ortiz from Million Dollar Listing New York rapping over it. The "Blackout" and "Papercut" duo stuck around at the beginning of 2015, where it was performed at the three shows on the ill-fated The Hunting Party North American Tour. When the band returned to touring in May for their short North American Summer Tour, "Papercut" received a brand new intro (titled the "2015 Intro") and opened each show, the first time the song had opened a show since 2011, and the first time the song had opened a show without any preceding interludes since 2003. At the band's show at BlizzCon at the end of the touring cycle, the 2015 Intro was changed around for a new remixed version of the "World Of Warcraft" in honor of the company's most popular game. This was the only time that intro was used.

"Papercut" returned on the One More Light world tour as the penultimate song in the setlist, being followed by "Bleed It Out". The full version of the setlist that debuted at the band's show in Santiago was the first time the song had been in the encore since the Living Things South American Tour in 2012. The song was also performed at the show in dedication to Chester Bennington, where Machine Gun Kelly came out to perform the song with the band. Jon Green performed during this song as well, doing the backing vocals at the end of the song, being the first time those vocals were performed live.

Mike included "Papercut" in his solo sets as a mashup with "Over Again", where he performs the first verse, second chorus, bridge, and outro over a more stripped down instrumental. He makes heavy use of a vocoder during the outro. The instrumental primarily featured just synths and drums until Dan Mayo and Matthias Harris joined Mike on tour starting with his Asian Tour. The song was consistently played near the end of the set, but starting with the second show of the US tour, "Papercut" became the most common main set closer. The medley of "About You", "Over Again", and "Papercut" also sporadically opened the encore starting in Charlotte.


Linkin Park

Last Updated: December 13, 2015

Type Description First Played Last Played
Intro Lee Interlude January 10, 2001 June 25, 2001
Intro Beatbox Intro June 1, 2001 June 1, 2001
Intro Long Show Opener Intro (Joe scratching over the beat of the song) November 15, 2003 November 25, 2003
Intro Short Intro (Short string intro with the beat of the song) June 3, 2004 September 11, 2004
Intro Long Intro (Longer version of the Short Intro) August 10, 2006 August 23, 2008
Intro 2015 Intro (Explosion sample followed by the verse riff of the song building up into the intro) May 9, 2015 September 6, 2015
Intro World Of Warcraft Theme Remix November 7, 2015 November 7, 2015
Outro Points Outro w/ "There They Go" Verse 1 (Regular outro of "Points Of Authority" added to the end of the song, due to the song being dropped) February 29, 2008 March 7, 2008
Outro Points Outro Jam (Regular outro of "Points Of Authority" added to the end of the song, due to the song being dropped) March 8, 2008 March 8, 2008
Outro w/ Extra Note After Ending (Segue into "New Divide" due to "Given Up" being dropped) November 7, 2010 November 7, 2010
Alternative Shortened (No 2nd Verse or 2nd Chorus) May 24, 2014 January 18, 2015

Mike Shinoda

Last Updated: July 10, 2019

Type Description First Played Last Played
Outro "Over Again" Ending May 12, 2018 March 26, 2019
Alternative Shortened (No First Chorus or Second Verse) May 12, 2018 March 26, 2019
Alternative Synth and Drum Instrumental May 12, 2018 July 28, 2018

Live Guests

Last Updated: August 25, 2018

  • Benjamin Chandler (replacing Brad Delson)
  • Jon Green (The Bonfires)
  • Machine Gun Kelly
  • Warren Willis (replacing Joe Hahn)



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

Additional Musicians

  • Ian Hornbeck: bass


  • Don Gilmore: producer
  • Jeff Blue: executive producer
  • Andy Wallace: mixer



In Other Media

  • "Papercut" is featured in the 2001 film The One.
  • A promotional poster for "Papercut" can be seen during a 2016 porn film starring Alyssa Lynn for WatchingMyMomGoBlack.

Cover Versions

Pakistani rock band Call covered "Papercut" during a performance for PlayTV's Play It Live show in 2007.[13]

To promote their And The World Stops EP, French metalcore band Early Seasons recorded a cover of "Papercut" which was made available on YouTube[14] and SoundCloud[15] in 2012. Their singer, Marty Degenne, have also done a vocal cover of "Blackout" which is available on the band's YouTube channel.[16]

External Links