OK, so we’re flying into March 2020 already? Hell, this year is roaring for sure so this month Spotify playlist is as follows.

First up we have Sick Bags and the track ‘Boys Bleed Too’ from the awesome NFT/Spaghetty Town Records EP ‘Only Thee Young Die Good’ if you love a blast of Punk Rock with plenty of Roll and a howling attitude then check it out.

Next up we have the magnificent Jeff Dahl and ‘The Violence Squad’ taken from his recent album ‘Electric Junk’.  A sparkling track from an equally sparkling album  – Worthy of any Spotify playlist.

Green Day slipped a brand new album out there as well recently and it seems to have shaken a few as to their expectations for what a “punk Band” should sound like.  Well, ‘Stab You In The Heart’ sees the band rip it up old school and what an excellent job Butch Walker did on the production front.  We love it.

Deathtraps make a noise and we love that. With a brand new album out right about now we dig into their back catalogue and bring you the awesome ‘The Death Of Rock And Roll’ taken off their second album ‘Gotta Get Some’ but you can check out the review of the new album here.

With the brand new album scheduled for release in April we got excited that a new long-player from new yorks Wyldlife was on the way so we added the last single ‘Neon Nightmare’ Can’t wait for ‘The Year Of The Snake’ to drop as I think you’ll be hearing a lot more from these boys this year.

Another band I caught up with recently is Empty Suits and their EP that blew me away,  We recently welcomed Dave Prince to the team and he delivered a review of the brand new Brian Fallon album ‘Local Honey’ so here’s the mellow tune ‘I Don’t Mind’.

Ben reviewed the new offering from Stone Temple Pilots ‘Perdida‘ so we’ve included the track ‘Miles Away’.  Also with a new album coming out soon is Dirtbox Disco so here’s a reminder of what they were all about and with Spunk Volcano now handling the vocals you can find out soon enough but we’ve heard it and you have nothing to worry about.

Having just landed the support on the Status Quo winter tour of the UK Rich Ragany & The Digressions also released a video for the title track so we’ve added it to this months playlist.

Also heading out on tour this month are The Bar Stool Preachers so why not warm up to ‘8.6 Days (All The Broken Hearts)’.

Bang Records are releasing the ‘In Heat’ album by The Fuzztones as it was intended so of course, we’re reviewing that in the coming weeks. It would be rude not to include the title track off that.  Continuing along the Garage Rock line Thee Hypnotics are treading the boards again so here’s the classic ‘Shakedown’. 

Finally, for March, we’ve got the lead track off the Biff Byford solo album ‘Me And You’.  A true legend of hard rock Biff has decided than now was the right time for a solo album.  Good luck to him we all have a bit of Biff in our hearts of that there is no doubt.  Enjoy our mixed bag kids and we hope you find something you like.

Give us a like or a follow or whatever you do on streaming services and hey buy an album and support the bands they deserve it. Thank you.

After the tragic death of Scott Weiland, I (like many other STP fans) had no interest in new music from the band with a new singer, especially an X Factor contestant. The recruitment of Jeff Gutt just reeked of Rockstar INXS to me and it felt like a betrayal on the legacy of their enigmatic frontman. No one could replace Scott Weiland, surely?

But, look at it from their point of view. Dean and Robert Deleo, along with drummer  Eric Kretz have a hell of a back catalogue, one that took them to the top of the charts back in the ’90s, and why should they not continue to write, record and tour as that band? Let’s face it, many bands have continued and even become more successful after the loss of their singer (AC/DC anyone?).

That said, I gave their last album a wide birth and had no interest in the band until word filtered through of an acoustic album they had recorded. Ever since their famous MTV Unplugged session back in 1993, it seems STP were destined to release an acoustic album, it was just a matter of when.

 

‘Perdida’ was self-produced by the band and recorded at Eric Kretz’ Bomb Shelter studios. Using vintage instruments and exploring themes of loss, death and goodbyes, (Perdida literally means loss in Spanish) the band has crafted an introspective album that sees them bare their souls, as they come to terms with the grief and sadness that has filled their lives in recent years.

Opener ‘Fare Thee Well’ is an uplifting, monumental song. Lyrically about lost love, yet full of sentiment and hope. The ghost of Scott Weiland is all over this track, Jeff’s vocals bare an uncanny resemblance, and there is no denying it. And it sort of makes me feel uncomfortable like I shouldn’t really be liking it…but I do, I really do, the hairs standing up on the back of my neck don’t lie.

Dean’s folk-inspired guitar intro leads to a heartbreaking melody that builds and builds to a glorious chorus, with almost gospel-tinged backing. The drums are powerful yet understated, giving a solid base for the instruments to breathe life into a song that is utterly beautiful after just one listen. It sets the tone for the album and sets the bar very high indeed.

With a ‘less is more’ approach to this album, the sparse arrangements create space and the rustic instrumentation is added only where needed to accentuate the songs. Here, the addition of flute, alt sax and guitarrone add another dimension to the STP sound.

The likes of ‘She’s My Queen’ could easily be a bombastic rock song with different production and arrangement, yet here stripped back to bare bones with open chords and lush harmonies, it shines.

‘Three Wishes’ could have sat nicely on the more experimental third album ‘Tiny Music..’. Dean’s signature slide guitar and Robert’s bass runs certainly hark back to that era of the band. Similarly, ‘I Didn’t Know The Time’ with its flute solo and jazzy, lounge feel is something the band has toyed with in the past and here it sits remarkably well.

Nylon string guitar takes precedence over the Spanish influenced title track, it comes on a bit too Euro-folk for its own good for me, but ‘Years’ with its lazy, sun-drenched California vibes, has an almost Beach Boys meets Simon and Garfunkel feel.

Big mention for the folky ‘Miles Away’ that flows on a killer vocal melody and swathes of mournful violin, giving a rustic Parisian feel, more in line with The Urban Voodoo Machine. This is a glorious song – make no mistake.

 

Stone Temple Pilots have delivered the album they have always hinted at making. And while ‘Perdida’ is a departure for the band and something that has been brewing for years, it is still very much Stone Temple Pilots by name and by nature. There’s a newfound vulnerability to the band that brings to mind Alice In Chains classic ‘Jar Of Flies’ acoustic album.

Hauntingly, the ghost of Scott Weiland looms over every chord they play and every note that Jeff sings, it probably always will. Haters are gonna hate, but I for one think that these songs are too good to ignore and am totally surprised and grateful that Stone Temple Pilots have delivered an album I never thought I would hear, and to be honest it has made me fall in love with this band all over again.

Buy ‘Perdida’ Here 

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