Let’s Talk About the New Scott Weiland and the Wildabouts Album
I’ve always been inexplicably drawn to Scott Weiland and I always will be. Part of it’s easy to explain: he sang on at least a dozen songs that are important to anyone between the ages of roughly 28 and 35, and the attachment is sentimental. There’s the iconic frontman angle — few performers were as captivating to watch in their prime — and there’s the obvious sex symbol attraction: girls want to bone him, guys want to be him. And of course there’s the modern-day trainwreck / TMZ aspect, too: you just can’t look away.
So I approach Weiland’s new band The Wildabouts with as much anticipation as trepidation, the former because I’m a fan and want to like whatever he releases, the latter because I’m keeping my guard up in case of a let-down. The Wildabouts will release their debut album Blaster on March 31st, and they’ve been letting tracks out for the world to hear over the past few weeks. Are they any good?
If you’re expecting a tripped-out freakfest like 1998’s 12 Bar Blues or 2008’s all-over-the-place Happy in Galoshes, don’t: Blaster is a straight-forward rock and roll album that sounds roughly like you’d expect sorta-tough-guy rock n’ rollers wearing John Varvatos to sound. It’s what you’d expect from Weiland at this point in his career — maybe what he’s always wanted to make? — and it feels honest. But none of the three tracks I’ve heard so far are particularly memorable; they’re perfectly fine rock and roll ditties, but they don’t really stick. Weiland is always gonna sound like Weiland but the STP comparisons are inevitable, and the Wildabouts just don’t seem to have that same knack for hooks that the DeLeo brothers do. Not that I’m trumpeting STP-with-Chester Benington as superior to The Wildabouts… that combo is insufferable.
Check out the three tracks from Blaster that’ve been released so far and see whether you think I’m off-base or not. “White Lightning” is the strongest of the bunch, IMO. Blaster comes out on March 31st.