Album Review: Scott Weiland "Blaster" 5-out-of-5 stars
Sun, 22 Mar 2015 20:10:08
Nobody does rock 'n' roll quite like Scott Weiland does rock 'n' roll. This is the man who drove Stone Temple Pilots to the pantheon with his lyrical poetry, vocal prowess, and inimitable swagger on classics such as Core, Purple, Tiny Music...Songs from the Vatican Gift Shop, and No. 4. He made Velvet Revolver’s Contraband and Libertad come to vivid life, and he’s had a string of potent solo releases. However, in many ways, Blaster belongs proudly alongside his best and most celebrated work in Stone Temple Pilots. You could consider it a spiritual successor to Tiny Music, as it often feels like it picked up where that album left off, crossing art rock panache with gutsy guitar energy. At the same time, it elevates that model itself, becoming even more "furry," as Scott likes to call it, at all the right moments.
Joined by The Wildabouts, his phenomenal band of guitarist Jeremy Brown, bassist Tommy Black, and drummer Danny Thompson, Scott personally infuses a new kind of energy into rock music. We constantly hear that the genre’s over, but it feels more alive than ever on Blaster, pumping through the speakers as loudly as possible too, mind you.
“Modzilla” couples a riff of Black Sabbath proportions with a raucous drum beat that allows Weiland to run wild with a rollicking authoritative verse and sweetly heavy hook. "Way She Moves" is a slink love ditty that combines bluesy fretwork with the singer’s booming dynamics just before "Hotel Rio" turns a syncopated chantable percussive stomp into a big bold rocker. “Amethyst” stands out amongst his most gorgeous compositions yet with it’s The Beatles-esque soul just prior to the trudging "White Lightning," which could've been ripped right from the Core cutting floor. The album’s standout is "Bleed Out," which sees Scott unleashed over an unfettered riff, making for a fast anthem on par with "Trippin' On a Hole in a Paper Heart."
"Circles" and 'Beach Pop' capture Southern California on wax as the record winds into one artful pastiche of everything that makes this music endure. After Blaster concludes, one thing is clear. There's literally nobody like Scott after all these years, and there never will be.
What’s your favorite Scott Weiland song?
Get Blaster on March 31, 2015 on iTunes!