Stone Temple Pilots Reveal Jeff Gutt as New Vocalist at Los Angeles’ Troubadour Show
Stone Temple Pilots have their guy! The band kept their new singer under wraps over the last month, but have finally played their first official show with Jeff Gutt fronting the band. The band put on the show at the Troubadour in Los Angeles with the audience made up of fans who were subscribers to SiriusXM along with several media outlets.
Just last month, bassist Robert DeLeo told Rolling Stone, "We've been working with someone – I don't want to name names yet – and we're making music. I don't know if he's well-known or unknown; I don't look at him as 'well-known.' But we're writing music and we're hopefully looking at finishing a record and putting it out soon."
Fans packed into the Troubadour to witness the unveiling and the band got right to work. The now bleach-blonde Gutt took the stage with spiky hair, wearing sunglasses and a plain black shirt with a "Hello, My Name Is Jeff" sticker attached. Gutt's name has been bandied about in the past as a possibility for the group, but they've also done a good job of throwing fans off the trail a bit as well.
Gutt was a one-time contestant on The X Factor and played in the band Dry Cell, and he seems like a great fit within Stone Temple Pilots. His lower register resonates well with what fans had come to love about the Scott Weiland-led Pilots era of songs, and he has the confidence and stage presence in equal amounts as well. Fittingly, the first song of the night was STP's "Down" which opens with the lines "Pleased to meet you / Nice to know me." As he pointed and rallied the crowd during the song, even putting his hands behind his ears to elicit more response, the audience definitely began to take to the vocalist and by the conclusion of the second song, "Wicked Garden," there was a celebratory applause.
After the third song of the evening, the band addressed the blonde-haired elephant in the room for the first time, telling the audience that they'd be seeing a lot more of Jeff, who introduced himself to the crowd. The band dug deeper into their catalog for songs like "Coma" and "Piece of Pie," but mainly stuck to the favorites. "Plush" got a stellar new arrangement with Dean DeLeo's guitar and Gutt's vocal taking center stage for nearly three quarters of the song, giving each a stellar showcase, before Robert DeLeo's bass and Eric Kretz's earth-shaking drumming brought things up briefly. Dean also worked in some slide guitar mastery disguising a bit of the "Big Empty" opening before that first recognizable moment. And tracks like "Interstate Love Song," "Vasoline" and "Sex Type Thing" felt fresh as ever.
The evening also featured one raucous special guest, as Gutt welcomed fellow Detroit icon Wayne Kramer and his red, white and blue guitar to the stage for a blistering rendition of MC5's "Kick Out the Jams." Stone Temple Pilots also debuted a brand new track titled "Meadow" during the night. The slick new rocker being serviced to radio features an instantly catchy lick from Dean DeLeo that rides the groove laid down by brother Robert's bass. The song will appear on the band's next album. All in all, it was a solid first night for the new look STP, with the audience chanting their name after the final notes rang out.