A few weeks ago I traced the career of the Stone Temple Pilots up to their new release, creatively titled Stone Temple Pilots. Of all their releases, I've looked forward to this one the most. The band seemed to have a fire and was ready to bring some much needed RAWK to the marketplace. And any time you can catch Scott Weiland on an upswing is a good thing for music.
Nine years away from their previous release, the sluggish Shangri La Di Da, STP returns with a strong showing. A big plus, in those nine years the other 3/4ths of the band didn't do squat. Well, that's not entirely true but it may as well have been. In any case, the DeLeos seem ready and armed with great riffs for Weiland to build on. Weiland himself is in fine form, at least as good as on his previous solo album. He seems awake and alert, delving into his glam rock influences to pull out his unique brand of rock mysticism.
And like all Stone Temple Pilot releases, they wear their influences out in the open. Nirvana, The Beatles, Mott The Hoople, David Bowie and Aerosmith all get copied yet STP has enough guts to make them their own. The grunge influence isn't quite as heavy allowing more room for poppier melodies on some cuts like "Cinnamon". STP has put together a uniformly solid disc, there aren't any highlights yet the album as a whole makes a good impression.
Will STP continue past this year? Who knows and who cares. They're here now and have delivered their best disc since 1996's Tiny Music.