LINKIN PARK's Mike Shinoda spoke about the band's future during a brand new interview with Germany's Rock Antenne. Asked what his plans are for the coming months, nearly two years since the death of singer Chester Bennington, Mike said (hear audio below): "I don't know. Right now, I'm very flexible. These [solo] shows [in Europe in March] are the only shows that I've planned so far. I don't have any other tours planned. So I'm keeping things open right now to experiences and conversations. And I'm writing all the time. I've been getting in the studio and writing with some other people too — producing for other people and writing for other people."
He continued: "I see the other guys [in LINKIN PARK] here and there — not all together usually. Usually it's just one on one. But I'm sure we're gonna get together soon and just hang out — hang out and see what's up."
Asked if he would ever consider looking for a new singer for LINKIN PARK, Shinoda said: "That's not my goal right now. I think it has to happen naturally. And if we find somebody that's a great person that we think is a good personality fit and a good stylistic fit, then I could see trying to do some stuff with somebody. Not for the sake of replacing… I wouldn't wanna ever feel like we were replacing Chester.
"There's a couple of things," Mike added. "One, we all thrive making and performing music, and so to not do that, I think, is hard. It definitely would be hard for me. I didn't wanna spend the last year not doing it, and I knew that the band was not ready to do it, so I wanted to go do it myself. Similarly, though, I know the other guys, they love to get onstage, they love to be in the studio, and so to not do that would be — I don't know — almost unhealthy. If doing that means that we need to have some other people in the mix in order to do it and do it well, then we would do that. And the other thing is, out of respect to the fans. I think there are many fans that want to continue to see the guys onstage and wanna continue to hear the music, and if we put a show up online, they'll wanna come. So as long as that connection and interest is there, I think that's a driving force to figure it out. But, like I said before, it has to happen naturally. I'm not running out and putting up 'vocalist wanted' posters. I think that's wholly inappropriate and probably a terrible idea."
Shinoda, who released an EP, "Post Traumatic", in January 2018, followed by a full-length album bearing the same title in June, told The Oakland Press that he was leery for a while of putting anything out into the world.
"Grief is a personal thing, a personal experience," Shinoda said. "Relatively early on I had a feeling — I didn't know, but I had a feeling — that things would get better, or they just wouldn't stay the same. We'll obviously never forget our friend. We'll always remind everybody how special and talented he was. But at the same time it'd be unhealthy and irresponsible for us not to move on with our lives at a certain point.
"So I had a feeling that with that journey ahead, and not knowing what shape it would take, that it would be interesting, and to share it would probably be difficult but in the long run it would help some people. I just felt like it would be worth sharing."
Bennington was found dead in his Los Angeles-area home in July 2017 after hanging himself.
LINKIN PARK headlined an all-star tribute concert for Bennington in October 2017 in Los Angeles but has not announced any future plans for recording or touring.