The 2001 Family Values Tour boasts two acts – Linkin Park and Staind – with triple-platinum albums currently in the Billboard top 10, though neither group is the headliner. That distinction goes to Stone Temple Pilots, who met the challenge at the tour’s second stop Friday, at the Allstate Arena near Chicago.
Led by Scott Weiland, Stone Temple Pilots played like a band with something to prove to the young crowd of some 15,000 fans, which – nearly a decade after the release of their debut album, Core, and in an era dominated by rap-rock and nÃ¼-metal – they do.
The quartet wasn’t above using borrowed star power to their advantage, bringing Richard Patrick of Filter onstage for an explosive version of that band’s 1995 hit, “Hey Man, Nice Shot.”
Weiland, who emerged in a priest’s collar but played most of the set shirtless, took several apparent shots at the other bands on the bill. “F
nÃ¼-metal!” he screamed before launching into the Pilots’ 1994 hit “Big Empty.” “How ’bout rock and roll?”
One song later, in a screeching tirade seemingly directed at Linkin Park, Weiland said, “I ain’t no motherf
ing rapper! But I got one thing in common with every one of you [fans]: rock and roll!”
As if to make clear just where the band is coming from, STP later covered Led Zeppelin’s “Dancing Days.”
Now touring in support of its fifth album, Shangri-La Dee Da, the quartet has plenty of its own hits to draw on, of course. Friday’s set included such familiar fare as “Creep” and “Trippin’ on a Hole in a Paper Heart.”
Staind preceded the Pilots with an hour-long performance that emphasized the moody metal of the foursome’s 2001 disc, Break the Cycle, including the recent hit “It’s Been Awhile.” Aaron Lewis sat on a stool to strum and sing “Outside” while the crowd’s cigarette lighters twinkled in the dark.
The band dipped into 1999’s Dysfunction for “Mudshovel” and the set closer, “Spleen.”
Released a year ago, Linkin Park’s Hybrid Theory is still lodged at #7 on the Billboard 200 albums chart. The Los Angeles band may have the less-than-glamorous middle slot among five acts on the Family Values Tour, but the rap-rock sextet was a fan favorite.
That was thanks in no small part to the energetic efforts of singer Chester Bennington, who leapt from amp cabinets and more than once waded into the crowd.
Linkin Park played their hits, including “One Step Closer” and “In the End.” They also reached back to their pre-major-label EP for “Step Up,” a little-heard number in which MC Mike Shinoda took a Weiland-like shot at rival rap-rockers: “Rapping over rock doesn’t make you a pioneer/ ‘Cause rock and hip-hop collaborated for years/ But now they’re getting readily mixed and matched up/ After a fast buck and all the tracks suck.”
The industrial metal outfit Static-X and newcomers Spike 1000 played the opening sets. Beginning with the October 18 show at the MCI Center in Washington, D.C., Deadsy will replace Spike 1000 in the first slot.
The tour began Thursday in Cleveland and continues through mid-November.