Months have passed since Scott Weiland left us and his legacy is not one that sits comfortably with music critics. From their inception, Stone Temple Pilots were considered to be imitators of the Seattle grunge style, an inferior group of musicians looking to capitalize on a hot trend. Even when their music evolved, showing signs of diversity and complexity and they began coming into their own, as if that initial judgment were the final determination they were still considered second rate. The truth is Stone Temple Pilots could do one thing the way few bands could – they could write a song. “Creep,” “Big Empty,” “Interstate Love Song” and many others were some of the finest music written in the past 20 years. Their penchant for marrying styles, for creating heavy atmospheres and fascinatingly innovative versions of the soft to loud dynamic Cobain so adored as much belonged to them as it did to Nirvana. Beatlesque harmonies laid over heavy guitar chords like warm honey over hot steel were at the heart of STP’s appeal. Regardless of what Weiland’s dark lyrics were referencing, whether it was depression, drug addiction or loneliness, the band was miraculously able to convey his emotions musically in a way no band had done before. The connection between Weiland, the writer of lyrics, and the guitar work of the DeLeo brothers along with drummer Eric Kretz, the musical translators, made for a massively dramatic musical dynamic that resulted in an individual sound, unconnected to musical movements or trends. Their music was solely their own. While some great music was made when they were separated, surely the greatest output came when the four members were together as one. The rare musical gift each band member had was deeply dependent on the inclusion of each of his mates and only under those circumstances could they achieve their ultimate musical expression. Weiland designed many of the concepts and his classic delivery brought to mind those great artists like David Bowie, Jim Morrison, Robert Plant and so many others that came before him. He was a true innovator, possibly one of the greatest front men of his generation. And yes, contrary to what they want you to believe, it is ok to like the music of Stone Temple Pilots.
Creep - Stone Temple Pilots