The other day I was watching/listening to a great interview Rick Beato did with Robert DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots. As soon as that interview was over, I immediately went into STP mode and started with Core all the way to the final album with Scott. While listening to all these great songs and albums, I went back to Core when it was all done because there has always been a song on that album that to me has never gotten the due it deserves. The song I’m talking about is “Sin.” This track is right smack in the middle of the album and it’s a truly remarkable song. Then when you combine the instrumental track “No Memory” before “Sin” it makes for one hell of a combination. “Sin” is one of those songs in the STP catalog that shows just how good of a band they really are. From Scott’s vocals, lyrics and melodies on this one, to the sort of behind the beat but right in the pocket drums of Eric Kretz, then you have the bass parts by Robert DeLeo that adds this really cool pseudo jazz/70’s rock element that makes the guitar work of Dean DeLeo brighter, plus the guitar solo towards the end is just so perfect for the song. A song like “Sin” is a perfect deep cut. It’s also one of those songs I wish got played live more, it’s that good!
Yesterday I had a Stone Temple Pilots song stuck in my head (it was “Trippin On A Hole In A Paper Heart” in case you were wondering). While I had that song replaying in my mind, I found myself delving into the very underrated and unsung masterpiece album that is Tiny Music… From The Vatican Gift Shop (which I will get into on another day because that album is truly great). During that time in 1996, while out promoting the album, Stone Temple Pilots stopped by the Howard Stern show for an interview and performance. Howard, who you can tell is a fan of the band and had them on the show throughout their career, as well as just Scott Weiland, mentioned that he loved their recent cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Dancing Days,” and low and behold, STP would go on to perform it that day on the show (they also performed “Seven Caged Tigers” as well). I truly think this cover is spectacular. I don’t know how many times I’ve listened to this version over the years but, it’s definitely up there. I just love the honest and pure approach STP had to their music and time together. It’s performances like this that make me miss Scott Weiland. What a talent and voice! You are missed Scott!
Stone Temple Pilots (Led Zeppelin)- Dancing Days on Howard Stern:
There are always albums in a bands career and catalog that will define them but there are certain ones that will always stand out among the rest. Stone Temple Pilots have that type of catalog. Their debut album, Core is a quintessential rock album every rock music fan should own but, the one that should really be in every collection is their second album and their masterpiece, Purple. We all now about the year 1994 and all the great albums that came out and Purple is most definitely on that list. Through the years as I’ve listened more and more to this album, there are always specific songs and moments I always go back to. For example my favorite song on the album “Lounge Fly” is such an amazing song. And the other song that has been a close second favorite “Silvergun Superman” has one of the best guitar solos on an STP album. Guitarist Dean DeLeo is not only underrated as a player but his style of play looks so flawless. When you hear him play it’s distinctly him. You can tell the difference especially if you listen to Velvet Revolver try to play STP songs, the guitar tones and styles don’t match Dean (and that’s not a knock on Slash, he just doesn’t have the same “feel” as Dean, especially for these songs. Solo wise on “Silvergun Superman” it’s got this really cool late 60’s early 70’s psychedelic rock vibe to it with a bit of a southern charm a la The Allman Brothers and a dash of Jimmy Page from Led Zeppelin. After you are done with delving into the greatness that is “Silvergun Superman” go back and listen to Purple, and you’ll hear why it’s a true masterpiece.
Stone Temple Pilots- Silvergun Superman (Album Version):
Stone Temple Pilots- Silvergun Superman (Live 1994):
It’s always fun to take songs of the same name and put them on back to back and contemplate about which one is better. There are so many of them out there and some are definitely better than some. One that I did recently were the songs “Sin” by Nine Inch Nails from Pretty Hate Machine and by Stone Temple Pilots on their album Core. Now these are both totally different but are quite good songs. The NIN one will always take the top prize for me. “Sin” the NIN version is in my top 10 all time favorite NIN songs.
The 2001 parody movie, Not Another Teen Movie had it’s moments of hilarity but, the best part of the movie truly was the soundtrack. There are so many great cover songs on it. One of my favorites from it is Scott Weiland’s version of Depeche Mode’s “But Not Tonight.” The song is originally a B Side to the “Stripped” single by Depeche Mode. It was written during the bands Black Celebration era. Scott’s version is quite different but, it’s equally impactful. There’s a real warmth to Scott’s version too.
Yesterday was marked 4 years since we lost Scott Weiland. It still sucks that he couldn’t get past all his demons to still create beautiful words and melodies. That being said though, we still have all the other great songs and albums he was a part of. Just like this very memorable performance from when Scott and Dean DeLeo were on Headbangers Ball and performed “Plush” acoustically. So take a few moments and enjoy this and celebrate the musical legacy Scott left us.
STP- Plush (on Headbangers Ball):
To this day, I will always remember the first time I heard “Lady, You Roof Brings Me Down.” I was sitting in my room doing my homework and listening to the radio and then there it was. I thought to myself, this doesn’t sound like Stone Temple Pilots but, that’s Scott singing. I was absolutely engrossed by what I was hearing. Then the song ends and the DJ says that it’s a song from Scott’s upcoming solo album and from the film Great Expectations.
Fast forward a bit and I now have Scott’s solo album, 12 Bar Blues in my stereo and I’m playing it on repeat. There was something odd and strange about this album and at that age I wasn’t quite sure what I was hearing and where this influence was coming from. So, I did what I’ve always done and really looked into it. To me 12 Bar Blues was an album Scott made to pay homage to those that really influenced and inspired him over the years. There is a real David Bowie and Iggy Pop element to the record among many others like Lou Reed and some in the R&B world.
The album was also made while Scott was deeply into his addiction and you can hear those nuances in the instrumentation, chord progressions, melodies and lyrics. You could tell, even back when STP made Tiny Music From The Vatican Gift Shop, that Scott was looking to explore different styles and sounds to break away from the “rock” sound, and he managed to create something that really stood out in a good way. When you listen to songs like “Desperation No. 5,” “Barbarella,” “Where’s The Man,” “Cool Kiss,” and “Mockingbird Girl” you can really hear the escape Scott was plotting as well as the influence. The album as a whole is a true piece of art and deserves to be acknowledged as such. For Scott’s first foray into making a “solo album” he really set a high bar for himself and others in his genre to follow.
I woke up this morning with Stone Temple Pilots in my head. Specifically the song “Atlanta.” So naturally I did what I always do and put that song on and then just let Number 4 start from the beginning. While listening to STP it got me thinking about their B-sides. Check out their B-sides over the years and songs that were previously unreleased.
Only Dying (from Core- Originally intended to be on The Crow Soundtrack):
All In The Suit That You Wear (from Thank You- Originally intended for the Spiderman Soundtrack):
Stone Temple Pilots have released another new song from their upcoming self titled album due out March 16. It’s very well known that no one will ever come close to Scott Weiland and his talent, melodies, and lyrics, that’s just irreplaceable. Stone Temple Pilots seem to have found the right guy for the job though. On the two songs released so far, “Meadow” and the new one “Roll Me Under” Jeff Gutt fits the profile of what the next singer of STP should sound like. He’s right in the range vocally of Scott so it won’t be a stretch for him to sing the older songs. The new song “Roll Me Under” sounds like a classic STP song. At least it’s not anything as bad as their work with Chester Bennington.
Stone Temple Pilots during their career wrote some of the best closing songs. The ones from Core (Where The River Goes), Purple (Kitchenware and Candybars), and Number 4 (Atlanta) are all cemented in my mind when it comes to great album closers. Each one of these songs is the perfect compliment to those great albums, especially “Kitchenware and Candybars,” and “Atlanta.”
Take a listen to these great songs and fall in love with those albums again!