Waiting For The End

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"Waiting For The End"
Single by Linkin Park
from the album A Thousand Suns
Working title Meadowlands
Recorded 2008-2010
Released October 1, 2010
Format CD, Digital
Length 03:51
Stems Guitar Hero: Warriors Of Rock (A Thousand Suns)
Rock Band 3 (DLC)
Neko Keyboard Sounds and Samples[1]
Open Labs SoundSlate Pro
Leaked Multitracks
Time signature 4/4
Tempo 85
Key E Major
Live debut September 07, 2010
Last played October 27, 2017
Writer(s) Linkin Park
Producer(s) Mike Shinoda, Rick Rubin
Label Warner Bros.
Linkin Park singles chronology

The Catalyst (2010) Waiting For The End (2010) Burning In The Skies (2011)

A Thousand Suns track listing
  1. The Requiem
  2. The Radiance
  3. Burning In The Skies
  4. Empty Spaces
  5. When They Come For Me
  6. Robot Boy
  7. Jornada Del Muerto
  8. Waiting For The End
  9. Blackout
  10. Wretches And Kings
  11. Wisdom, Justice, And Love
  12. Iridescent
  13. Fallout
  14. The Catalyst
  15. The Messenger

"Waiting For The End" is the eight track on A Thousand Suns and the second single from the album. It features a heavy use of electronic elements, primarily revolving around the synths that make up most of the instrumental. The song builds slowly with a reggae-influenced drum beat, ultimately climaxing with a guitar solo featuring heavy use of an octaver and a pitch splitter. The song charted relatively high on the charts, even hitting the number one spot on the US Billboard Alternative Chart, and number two on the US Billboard Rock Chart.


Chester said that "Waiting For The End" and "Iridescent" were tied as his favorite song on the album, stating that he felt the two were very beautiful, and that he particularly loved the summertime vibe in "Waiting For The End" and the lyrical content.[2] Discussing the song, Mike said that "Waiting For The End" was a very interesting song for people to hear on the record, as "people who are fans of our band haven’t heard a song that mixes these kinds of emotions and these kinds of lyrics. One minute it’s blazing loud, and the next minute it’s super dark and quiet and even a weird mix of hopeful and fearful. And to me, it’s a very three-dimensional song, and I think it became that kind of a song because of the insane writing experience on it."[3]

The track originally started as drums and rap and was pretty boring to him, but he thought it had potential. As he and Chester thought of the possible vocal lines for the song, the line "Waiting for the end to come" stood out to him and that line ended up helping them finish the rest of the track.

"We were listening to the album version of this next song before the show and as we were listening to it we were kind of singing along a little bit and I was just really just enjoying the sound of Chester's voice on it. It's just so good. And I remember - this is actually the song, the way we do it here is a mashup so it's two different songs - but the first thing you'll hear is the Linkin Park song, and I remember what happened was when we were working on the song that this part that we play here was the track. That was the beat that I had made on my laptop and I had a cool rap verse over it that I really liked it, but it wasn't a song, it wasn't really the thing. And sometimes there were these moments. A lot of times he would bring me things and he would be like, you know, 'What do you think of this? What do you think of this?' And he was really deferring to me. He was waiting for me to say 'Oh yeah, that's the one, that's really good' And because a lot of times it was like I bring him stuff, I'd be like 'That's great,' you know. 'Sing it.' And once in a while he would bring something in that was really cool. I was playing the beat and he was like 'Oh man, I had this thing that I recorded the other day.' He pulls out his phone and he's flipping through little things that he recorded on his phone. And the moment he pressed play I was like 'Oh wow! That's the song!' Like 'That's what this song is missing!' And that's the beauty of when you're working with other friends, when you're working with other writers, other people who make music who come with something special and something magical. It wasn't even in the way necessarily that he sang it. Was just the idea of it. It was just so pure and so great."[4]

At the crescendo of the chorus on "Waiting For The End", vocals are mixed with pedals, guitars, and scratching to create a unique robotic effect. While Delson played the riff, Shinoda manipulated an Electro-Harmonix HOG (harmonic octave generator), which was connected to an expression pedal to control the octave sweep and a resonant filter to add some edge. Layered on top of the guitars is a track of Hahn scratching Bennington's chorus. The HOG is used again on the song's spacey, pad-like guitar, but followed by an EHX Holy Grail reverb pedal and a Fulltone Tube Tape Echo.[5]

In 2015, after Mike revived Fort Minor with "Welcome", he stated that "Waiting For The End" is one of the songs in Linkin Park's discography since the coming of the project that had elements of Fort Minor in them.[6]


Multiple remixes of the song were done. The Glitch Mob's remix of the song appeared on the song's single. An EP of different versions of the "Waiting For The End" remix by DJ Lynnwood & Dave Dresden was released, which included the extended, edited, and instrumental versions of the remix. Dresden said, "A proper follow-up to our collaboration on the Silversun Pickups "Lazy Eye" remix. This remix was commissioned by the label but the whole project was shelved. Enjoy this exclusive track for your DJ set."[7] KickDrums also did a remix of the song, which was uploaded to their official Soundcloud page. The single was also remixed by the San Diego-based remixing duo Dirty Pop.[8] The track can be found in the 2011 compilation Fresh Club Music Vol.11. Producer DrewG said, "I've always been a huge Linkin Park fan since the day Hybrid Theory went on the shelves of the local Sam Goody that I worked for. Life changing record... I can't tell you how many hard times that album got me through."[9]


CD Single

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1 Waiting For The End Linkin Park 3:51
2 Waiting For The End (Glitch Mob Remix) Linkin Park 4:54

Digital Single

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1 Waiting For The End Linkin Park 3:51
2 The Catalyst ("Guitarmagedon" DIOYY? Remix) Linkin Park 3:06

Music Video

Mike Shinoda said "Waiting For The End" is one of his favorite videos Linkin Park have done.[10]


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


Title Album Length Recorded Released Notes
Waiting For The End A Thousand Suns

Waiting For The End


3:51 November 2008-August 2010 September 8, 2010
Waiting For The End (Non Rap Version) Waiting For The End (Non Rap Version) 3:17 2010 2010
  • Radio edit.
  • Shorter intro.
  • Mike's first verse is missing.
Waiting For The End (Extended Version) 4:58 2010 2010
  • Extended intro.
  • Additional beats throughout the song.
  • Extended outro.
  • Music video found on a "Promo Only" DVD.
Waiting For The End A Thousand Suns Instrumentals 3:56 2008-2010
  • The CD dates from September 15, 2010.
  • Official instrumental version.


Title Album Length Recorded Released Notes
Waiting For The End (The Glitch Mob Remix) Waiting For The End 4:53 2010 October 1, 2010
  • Remix by The Glitch Mob.
Waiting For The End (DJ Lynnwood & Dave Dresden Remix) (Extended) Waiting For The End (DJ Lynnwood & Dave Dresden Remixes) 6:30 2010 June 8, 2011
Waiting For The End (DJ Lynnwood & Dave Dresden Remix) (Dubstrumental) Waiting For The End (DJ Lynnwood & Dave Dresden Remixes) 6:30 2010 June 8, 2011
Waiting For The End (DJ Lynnwood & Dave Dresden Remix) (Edit) Waiting For The End (DJ Lynnwood & Dave Dresden Remixes) 3:56 2010 June 8, 2011
Waiting For The End (DJ Lynnwood & Dave Dresden Remix) (DJ Friendly Edit) Waiting For The End (DJ Lynnwood & Dave Dresden Remixes) 5:13 2010 June 8, 2011
Waiting For The End (KickDrums Remix) 3:10 2010 April 30, 2012


Title Album Length Recorded Released Notes
Waiting For The End (Live In Madrid) A Thousand Suns: Puerta De Alcalá 4:04 November 07, 2010 January 25, 2011
Waiting For The End Live In Madrid 3:52 November 07, 2010 April 1, 2011
Waiting For The End (Live) iTunes Festival: London 2011 - EP 4:10 July 04, 2011 July 8, 2011
Waiting For The End Live In Red Square 4:05 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.
Waiting For The End (Live From Berlin, 2010) A Thousand Suns - Live Around The World 3:56 October 20, 2010 June 12, 2012
Waiting For The End Live At Admiralspalast Berlin, Germany June 05, 2012 March 29, 2013


"Waiting For The End" was debuted at the KROQ Kevin and Bean Breakfast Show, before the A Thousand Suns tour officially started. Once the tour officially started in New York City, "Waiting For The End" was always played after "Jornada Del Muerto" at ever full show for the rest of the cycle, with the only exception being the band's show in Madrid, 2010, where it was played after "When They Come For Me". The song was frequently played for radio and TV performances, including Saturday Night Live, and even the A Thousand Horizons event, though the song wasn't technically performed by the band at this show. Instead, both the studio version and the Glitch Mob Remix were played over the speakers. "Waiting For The End" was the only A Thousand Suns song to be played at every show of the cycle.

"Waiting For The End" was one of the few songs to survive past the A Thousand Suns cycle. Starting with the Living Things cycle, "Waiting For The End" was given a new intro with Mike rapping the third verse of "Until It Breaks" over a modified version of the verse beat, and a new outro dubbed the "Wall of Noise Outro", which featured Chester singing the final refrain over a steadily building instrumental. This version of "Waiting For The End" was played at every show throughout 2012 and 2013 except for the KROQ Dressing Room rehearsal, where the outro wasn't played, and the Rio+ Social, where the studio version was played for the only time during the Living Things cycle. Both sets of the 2012 European tour had "Waiting For The End" after "Points Of Authority". The song opened the Sirius XM's Town Hall performance. Once the band kicked off the Honda Civic Tour, three new sets debuted, two of which stuck around until the end of 2013. Both Sets A and B initially had "Waiting For The End" after "Points Of Authority", and later "Lies Greed Misery". Set C had "Waiting For The End" after "When They Come For Me". A shortened version of "Waiting For The End" was performed for the first, and only, time at the iHeart Radio show, dropping the first chorus and second verse. The one-off setlist for KROQ Almost Acoustic Christmas 2012 had "Waiting For The End" after "Lies Greed Misery". The sets for 2013 featured mostly the same setlists as 2012, and "Waiting For The End" didn't move positions.

2014 featured "Waiting For The End" in the same form as the Living Things tour. The three shows in January all featured "Waiting For The End", the first and last having the song after "New Divide", and the headlining set having it after "When They Come For Me". The new, experimental start to The Hunting Party touring cycle had "Waiting For The End" in a new position, after "Burn It Down". It was played in this position every time the song was played until Set B debuted during the Carnivores Tour, where the song was after "Numb". The mostly cancelled 2015 North American Tour featured almost identical sets to the ones at the end of 2014, and the position of the song didn't change. However, starting with the summer shows in 2015, "Waiting For The End" was played in new positions. The festival sets had the song after "Faint", and the headlining setlist featured the song in the encore for the first time, after "Crawling". Starting with the 2015 Chinese tour, "Waiting For The End" opened the encore for the first time, since "Crawling" was dropped, which is the first time the song opened the encore. It opened the encore for every show of both the 2015 Chinese tour and the 2015 European tour except for the final show in Roma, Italy, where the song was played after "A Place For My Head" due to it being played by fan request. The song was originally on the setlist for the band's show at BlizzCon, but was dropped last minutes due to time constraints, making the band's show at Monster Mash the last time the song was performed on the touring cycle.

The One More Light tour cycle was the first cycle where "Waiting For The End" was consistently dropped from a setlist, the band not performing it during festival sets. However, the track was present during headlining shows, where a new intro featuring a mashup with "Remember The Name" was performed. During the One More Light European Tour, "Waiting For The End" ended up being performed at some festivals. At Linkin Park's Hollywood Bowl tribute show, Mike performed a brand new piano intro before kicking into the Apaches Intro with "Until It Breaks" for the first time since 2015. Sydney Sierota from Echosmith and Steven McKellar from Civil Twilight (who joined the band earlier in the set during "Nobody Can Save Me") performed the song with the band.

After Mike brought Fort Minor back after nearly nine years of inactivity, he played a one man show in Los Angeles. At this show, "Waiting For The End" was performed as a mashup with "Hands Held High". The first verse of "Waiting For The End" was performed normally before Mike started rapping the first verse and sung the chorus of "Hands Held High" over a modified version of the intro synth. After that, he rapped the second verse of "Hands Held High" over a modified form of the verse beat, rapping the line "When the rich wage war, it's the poor who die" five times to close the song instead of finishing the verse.

During the Post Traumatic Tour, Mike performed a mashup of "Waiting For The End" and the Fort Minor song "Where'd You Go." The only parts of "Waiting For The End" that were featured were the instrumental and Mike's first verse. Taka from the band ONE OK ROCK (who joined Linkin Park at the Hollywood Bowl for "Somewhere I Belong") join Mike for the mashup during his set at Identity LA. When Matt Harris joined the band, he began playing a new guitar part during the bridge of the mashup. Mike eventually began singing a "Waiting For The End" acapella with the crowd in Chengdu, China, the acapella quickly being turned into an extended outro of the mashup. Mike performed this outro in a similar fashion to how he performed the extended intro at the Hollywood Bowl. In San Francisco, Mike performed the first verse and chorus of "Waiting For The End" as an intro rather than an outro.


Linkin Park

Last Updated: August 26, 2018

Type Description First Played Last Played
Intro Apaches Intro w/ "Until It Breaks" Verse 3 May 4, 2012 October 27, 2017
Intro Piano Intro w/ Verse 1 + Chorus October 27, 2017 October 27, 2017
Outro Wall Of Noise Outro May 4, 2012 October 27, 2017
Outro Short Wall Of Noise Outro December 13, 2014 December 13, 2014
Alternative Shortened (No First Verse or Second Chorus) September 22, 2012 September 22, 2012

Fort Minor

Last Updated: December 25, 2015

Type Description First Played Last Played
Mashup Waiting For The End/Hands Held High June 29, 2015 September 8, 2015

Mike Shinoda

Last Updated: July 10, 2019

Type Description First Played Last Played
Intro "Waiting For The End" Sing-a-long November 06, 2018 November 06, 2018
Outro Short Piano Outro August 14, 2018 August 14, 2018
Outro "Waiting For The End" Sing-a-long August 22, 2018 March 26, 2019
Mashup w/ "Where'd You Go" May 12, 2018 March 26, 2019
  • NOTE: All extensions from Mike Shinoda sets are to the "Waiting For The End" / "Where'd You Go" mashup, not the individual song itself.

Live Guests

Last Updated: August 26, 2018

  • Benjamin Chandler (replacing Brad Delson)
  • Sydney Sierota (Echosmith)
  • Steven McKellar (Civil Twilight)
  • Takahiro Moriuchi (ONE OK ROCK)
  • Warren Willis (replacing Joe Hahn)


Awards and Nominations

Year Award Category Status
2011 Billboard Music Awards Top Alternative Song Nominated
2011 MTV Video Music Awards Best Special Effects Nominated
2011 Teen Choice Awards Choice Rock Track Nominated




In Other Media

  • "Waiting For The End" is featured in the 4th episode of Season 11 of the TV series CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, titled "Sqweegel".
  • "Waiting For The End" was released in 2010 as part of a DLC for the 2010 videogame Guitar Hero: Warriors Of Rock.
  • "Waiting For The End" was released in 2011 as part of a DLC for the 2010 videogame Rock Band 3.
  • "Waiting For The End" is featured in the 2012 film Schutzengel and was included in its soundtrack album.

External Links

  • Waiting For The End (Music Video): LPTV | WMG | MTV | VK
  • Waiting For The End (Lyric Video): LPTV
  • Waiting For The End (Pop Up Video): MTV
  • Waiting For The End (A Thousand Suns Tour 2011) - LPTV
  • Waiting For The End (Rio+Social 2012) - The Live Room
  • Waiting For The End (Telekom Street Gigs 2012) - WMT