Weiland sticks to his guns at Showcase Live

A review of Scott Weiland at Showcase Live! on December 3

, Editor-in-Chief

Scott Weiland, troubled but immensely talented rock star, does things his own way. He made that perfectly clear last Wednesday night at the second half of WBCN’s Xmas rave show by delaying his show forty minutes and then filling the set with material& that mattered more to him than the crowd on hand. It made for a inconsistent, though solid, show with moments of classic Weiland genius and awkward snoozers.

If you were going to Showcase Live! with the idea of hearing Stone Temple Pilots or Velvet Revolver, Scott Weiland made it perfectly clear that you were at the wrong show. “For those of you that expect Velvet Revolver or STP, that’s not what you’re gonna get,” he declared before explaining, “What you’re gonna get is a taste of everything that has inspired me and this band over the last 20 years.” To be fair, that should not have surprised anyone. Weiland has been in town with both bands over the past couple of years, most recently with STP at WBCN’s River Rave – which was at the start of a six month/sixty-plus city reunion tour that wrapped up just two months ago. More importantly, he’s supporting his brand new solo album, Happy in Galoshes.
It did not help that he declared this after showing up forty minutes late – again not much of a shocker (though no Axl Rose, he certainly has never been punctual). Scheduled to start at 10, the crowd was instead given a marathon of 80’s hair and metal anthems before members of WBCN’s Toucher & Rich show hit the stage to introduce Weiland just before 10:40 (and for the record, the Opie and Anthony following made their displeasure known for the station’s recent format change).

With cigarette in hand and clad in a wide-brimmed& hat, white dress jacket, tie, velvet vest, and jeans, Weiland casually walked on stage and acknowledged the crowd by saying, “Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for coming.” Then along with his four-piece band he eased into a lackluster cover of The Smiths’ “Reel Around the Fountain”. Much like Happy in Galoshes itself, the show was all over the place and thus the set that followed was a bumpy ride. He excelled with “Paralysis” (arguably the best song off the new album) and “Blind Confusion”. The low points came during a tepid “Blister On My Soul” and “Beautiful Day”, a snoozer that closed out the main set in bizarre fashion. And then there were the more experimental tunes, like the electronica fused “Big Black Monster” (which he described as a Prince/PJ Harvey hybrid) and a cover of the Flaming Lips’ “Waiting For Superman”.

Halfway through the set, the crowd& joined in unison chants of “S-T-P” (though many others just heckled), and Weiland gave in and launched into “Interstate Love Song”. Not surprisingly, the crowd erupted and it was easily the highlight of the night., but that was it for STP material. Still, even without the more expansive catalog or larger& stage show, Weiland still proved why he is regarded as one of rock’s best showmen. He danced across the stage with his signature moves and managed to captivate the crowd with his delivery& even during the lowest moments of the night.
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For many fans, that was the benefit of seeing Weiland perform in such an intimate venue. However, for others, that novelty wore off quickly as he continued to sideline the hits from the Stone Temple Pilots catalog. It’s unlikely placing one in the encore would appease those attendees but it surely would have been great to have one precede show closer “Missing Cleveland” (the current single and clear standout of the new album).
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Unfortunately, what the crowd got was Scott Weiland and Scott Weiland only, and all found out decisively that that does not mean the same thing as Scott Weiland, frontman of STP or Velvet Revolver.

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