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Stone Temple Pilots

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Founded in 1992 in San Diego by vocalist Scott Wieland and bassist Robert DeLeo, the Stone Temple Pilots exploded onto the music industry while riding the coattails of the Grunge scene of the early 1990s.

While they fell into more of a post-grunge genre, the Stone Temple Pilots (STP for short) has a more unique sound, comparable to the likes of Led Zeppelin and the Doors. Robert DeLeo and his brother/lead guitarist Dean DeLeo’s frantic craftsmanship of their riffs, specifically, gave STP an eclectic and psychedelic sound.

Drummer Eric Kretz’s slow and groovy style, and Weiland’s low vocals and picturesque vocals filled out the rest of the bands old-school sound.

STP released their debut album, Core, in 1992, and instantly became a rock powerhouse. Off of the success of the singles “Plush” and “Creep,” Core would go on to sell over eight million copies in the U.S. Though commercially and fan friendly, STP’s sound was disliked my many critics due to their similarity in style to previous Grunge bands.

In 1994, STP released their sophomore effort, Purple, once again to great commercial success. “Interstate Love Song,” the bands highest charting single to date, was a high-energy and radio-friendly rocker that peaked at fifteen on the Billboard’s Hot 100. Two other singles, “Vasoline” and “Big Empty,” also received great airplay. One cannot help but continue to draw comparisons to Led Zeppelin with tracks like “Pretty Penny,” a slow acoustic-driven song.

The Pilot’s sound took a more psychedelic turn after Purple, and Weiland dealt with a drug problem, which would then lead to on-and-off legal issues. The band broke up temporarily in 1995, but soon got back together, and STP released their third album, Tiny Music . . . Songs from the Vatican Gift Shop. Another multi-platinum success for the band, Tiny Music . . . was a more frantic album than the past two, with songs such as “Big Bang Baby” and “Trippin’ on a Hole in a Paper Heart.”

Still battling his personal demons, Weiland recorded a 1998 solo album, 12 Bar Blues, while the remaining members of STP recruited vocalist Dave Coutts to record a self-titled LP under the band name Talk Show. To the surprise of many, Stone Temple Pilots then reunited, although shortly after completing 1999’s No. 4. Weiland was sentenced to a year in a Los Angeles county jail for violating his probation, which stemmed from an earlier conviction for heroin possession. Even so, a newly rejuvenated Stone Temple Pilots and a sober Weiland emerged stronger than ever during the new millennium. The band got back to basics with Shangri-La Dee Da, released in summer 2001. Two years later, STP issued the ambitious greatest-hits package Thank You. The audio-only edition featured fifteen tracks – thirteen hits spanning the group’s entire career, an acoustic version of “Plush” dating from 1992, and the new track “All in the Suit That You Wear” - while a special CD/DVD format included three hours of videos, live performances, and behind-the-scenes footage.

Stone Temple Pilots took another break between 2003 and 2008, during which time Weiland found renewed success as the frontman of Velvet Revolver. After clashes with his band mates resulted in his exit from the group, Weiland reunited with STP and embarked on a successful reunion tour in 2008, with ticket sales reportedly totaling $230,000 per show. The band returned to the studio one year later, emerging in 2010 with the release of Stone Temple Pilots, its self-titled sixth album. It reached number two on the U.S. album charts, and the band embarked on a worldwide tour which wound up being documented on the 2011 live video Alive in the Windy City. STP was planning to continue a tour in 2012, possibly playing their debut Core in its entirety, but these plans fell apart, and on February 27, 2013 the group announced they had fired Weiland. On the following day, the singer countered that this was all a ruse to boost ticket sales and that lawyers would straighten out the situation, but the remaining members of Stone Temple Pilots soldiered on without him, appearing as a surprise guest on KROQ’s annual Weenie Roast on May 18, 2013.

Their new vocalist is Chester Bennington from Linkin Park; he not only performed with the band, but he sang lead on the group’s new single “Out of Time,” from the new EP, which was available for download on May 19, 2013.

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