Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Music Review: Stone Temple Pilots - Stone Temple Pilots

In the nine years that have passed since last we heard from recently reunited arena alt-rock giants Stone Temple Pilots, all four original members have kept themselves busy. Singer Scott Weiland had a successful run as singer for supergroup Velvet Revolver (featuring members of Guns N’ Roses) for two albums and released his second solo record (in 2008), while the DeLeo brothers (guitarist Dean and bassist Robert) had a milder sense of achievement with supergroup Army of Anyone, featuring Richard Patrick of Filter as lead singer and Ray Luzier (lately of Korn) behind the kit.

Drummer Eric Kretz mainly worked behind the scenes at his L.A.-based Bomb Shelter Studios, mixing and engineering tracks for a varied list of acts, including Fu Manchu, Damian Marley, Slayer, and Death Cab For Cutie, and also San Francisco rock band Spiral Arms, whom he also reportedly played with.

After reuniting for select shows in 2008, the band, with Weiland focused and drug-free, wrote, recorded and produced its sixth album, simply self-titled (Stone Temple Pilots) last year, finished it up in early 2010, and released it May 25 on Atlantic Records.

Number one rock single “Between The Lines” is the heaviest track on the new disc (drop-d tuning), but it doesn’t have the overdriven sound of (1992) debut album Core and instead has a ‘60s pop/rock vibe to it. You can also spot in the bridge a little resemblance to Nirvana’s “Stay Away” in the vocals. And it all makes for an excellent choice for an album opener and lead single.

True maximum hard rock riffage can be found on “Hazy Daze,” which finds Weiland contrasting the pleasantness of this album highlight with unhappy lyrics, largely about his father.

“Huckleberry Crumble” channels the band’s inner Aerosmith, “Same Old Song And Dance” in particular, while “First Kiss On Mars” sees Weiland sound amazingly and exactly like his hero David Bowie.

This article was first published in full late last week at Blogcritics Magazine. Find the review at this link.

No comments: