Scott Weiland signed copies of his new memoir Not Dead & Not For Sale at Book Soup in West Hollywood last night before heading across the street to the Viper Room, where he performed a sold-out show.
A line of fans formed a perimeter around Book Soup on Sunset Blvd., patiently waiting to meet the infamous Stone Temple Pilots and ex-Velvet Revolver frontman. Weiland can now add “author” to his list of titles and achievements, which also includes being a designer for the clothing line English Laundry.
When we arrived, co-author David Ritz was by Weiland's side. Weiland seemed mesmerized by the painterly portrait on the cover and explained to us how he had to sit perfectly still for three minutes in order for a giant, vintage camera to take the exposure.
“Some people say it looks like Van Gogh,” Weiland said of the portrait, as if it weren't an image of himself.
We agreed with the famous comparison and were surprised we hadn't made the correlation sooner. Upon closer inspection, we also can see a bit of Bob Dylan in that photograph of Weiland as well.
In Not Dead & Not For Sale, Weiland discusses his battle with drug addiction, which started at age 14; his strained relationships with his family; the recording of Core; the monetary motivation to front Velvet Revolver; his undying admiration for ex-wife Mary Forsberg Weiland; and sexual abuse he encountered at age 12 from a high school senior. There are plenty of lyrics, photographs and torn half-pages (that act as dividers) as well.
Onto the show!
To not mention the opening bands would be a musical travesty, since many people who attended last night's show are feverishly googling the opening acts right now.
Max and the Marginalized emerged first, delivering fast-paced, politically-charged punk songs. The band writes and records a new song every week and all songs are available for download via “the honor system” on their blog.
Their goal is to release their songs immediately in order to spark conversation about world issues and ignite change. It's a little difficult to catch this message at a live show (especially if you are unfamiliar with their music) but, on paper, their lyrics pack a hard punch.
We thoroughly enjoyed the lead singer's Kool-Aid red hair, X-Ray Spex shirt and burgundy Doc Martens! Further proof that grunge is making a comeback.
The second act, Lonely Trees, really stood out.
If The Cardigans and Metric had an indie love-child, the result would be Lonely Trees. This five-piece band stole the show (and our hearts). In fact, we're listening to their music as we type this. Their songs are hauntingly melodic and dreamy (not to mention, hella catchy). Most indie bands can lull you to sleep, but Lonely Trees stays upbeat and demands your attention.
We dug their style and wanted to covet guitarist and singer Christian Stone's vintage Boy Scouts shirt. Lead singer Annalee Fery exudes an adorable indie Zooey Deschanel vibe and contorts her body and fingers as she sings, which provides sort of an odd, but highly intriguing stage presence.
Perhaps they intentionally saved their best song for last last night. Their drum-heavy song “Flutter” sounds radio-ready to us. We have a feeling this band isn't going to remain 'unsigned' for long.
The crowd grew a little hostile and pushy in between sets. A girl-fight almost broke out, followed by a verbal altercation between the girls' boyfriends(?), and ended with a verbal altercation between the boyfriend and girlfriend. Oh, the drama of bringing your opinionated girlfriend to a show with you!
We asked a tall guy if we could stand in front of him for the first three songs and he muttered something about being there since 3 PM and how he's heard that line before and how he almost ripped a camera out of a photog's hands at another concert. Luckily, we managed to shoot the show without having to stand near him, but what was up with the crowd last night?!
Weiland and his band started with a catchy jam and then performed a myriad of cover songs including Radiohead's “Let Down”, Nirvana's “Francis Farmer Will Get Her Revenge On Seattle”, The Flaming Lips' “Waitin' For A Superman”, The Doors' Road House Blues and David Bowie's “Fame” and “Jean Genie.”
Fans who were expecting to hear a lot of STP and Velvet Revolver songs may have left disappointed, but Weiland did pull out “Unglued” as an encore.
More photos and the full setlist after the jump . . .
Waiting For Superman
Into Your Arms
But Not Tonight
I Am The Resurrection
Road House Blues
Francis Farmer Will Get Her Revenge On Seattle