Stone Temple Pilots (2018)
Stone Temple Pilots first album with new singer Jeff Gutt is definitely an interesting one for the band as they had to take a huge step. The band said they were not going to continue the band unless they found the right singer. You can see why they picked Gutt as he sounds like Weiland in a lot of ways. Gutt’s voice doesn’t always come out clear through the music but its probably meant for that way. This album will remind you what you knew about STP in a lot of ways. There’s nothing I would think of as the next “Plush” or “Interstate Love Song” but it got the classic STP sound with good guitar riffs and good vocals. Most the songs are upbeat rockers with a few exceptions. Most the of the album seem to remind me of Shangri Lee Dee Da, No. 4, and even their first self titled album.
The album opens up with “Middle of Nowhere” and they start off loud and fast. It’s a great opener and gets you excited to hear the rest of the album. One thing notable in the song is the musical break with excellent guitar work. A lot of modern music does not sound like this these days so its great to hear something like this. First single “Meadow” is I guess what you would expect from a band like this these days. Like I said it’s not going to be a big hit like their past singles, but it is something that would please fans and is what you would expect out of this band. It is has notable guitar work like the rest of the rockers on the album but distinguished itself from a lot of the other ones with more mainstream appeal. On first listen a lot of the rockers sometimes sound similar, but you will get a pleasant surprise when you hear “Thought She’d Be Mine.” Some rock bands similar to Stone Temple Pilots might struggle with ballads since they are known so much for their rock songs but not for STP. This one shines on the album coming after like 5 rockers in a row. Not saying it is better this way, but Gutt’s vocals are a lot more clearer here than anywhere before and he does it good. It is a good storytelling song that lasts around 5 minutes. This will remind you of one of STP’s classic ballads similar to the ones on No.4 like “I Got You” (the music, not the lyrics). “Roll Me Under” is pretty much a rock song but slower than a lot of the other ones being more of a mid tempo/rock song. It will remind you of No.4 most likely with hard guitar riffs similar to the work on “Down” from that album. “Never Enough” I could see as being one of the next singles. It is a rocker where the vocals come in clearer than a lot of the other ones. It is pretty melodic too for an STP song with emotional vocals. Not that would be unusual for the band, but sometimes they focus a lot on the guitar riffs. This one has a strong melody as well as good guitar riffs. “The Art of Letting Go” is another great ballad. They really shine on this and this one earlier. These are more mainstream than the rockers. I would say they could be singles but STP doesn’t really release ballads for singles besides “Sour Girl.”
This does have a lot of things you would expect off of an STP album. Like I said some of the rockers sound the same, but that might just be how it sounds to me on the first listen. Due to that though I found myself liking some of the slower songs better because they were something different. All in all it seems like a good comeback album for the band and should do well. They certainly found someone who’s sounds a lot like Weiland and that could be hard.