Stone Temple Pilots & Blue October at The Woodlands, 7/19/2014
When it was first announced that Chester Bennington would be singing with the Stone Temple Pilots, the public raised a collective eyebrow and even avid Linkin Park fans wondered if he possessed the chops for the job. But Bennington slowly won over fans, both old and new.
With an appreciation for the band's original sound but also a swagger all his own, he strode out onto the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion stage Saturday night alongside the rest of the band's original lineup to the elation of the crowd.
Unlike many contemporary rock concerts, Bennington's vocals were subdued, set alongside the bass and guitar levels instead of high above them. As fans gleefully sang along to the likes of "Sex Type Thing," "Vaseline," "Big Empty" and "Dead & Bloated," it became clear that Bennington had resolved himself not to reinvent the wheel.
STP has been doing its thing for some two and a half decades now. And as elucidated in numerous interviews, Bennington is just excited to be a part of one of his favorite groups.
So while he might strut about the stage as if he owns it, what he's really doing in swaying the cameras and the crowd's attention toward the other band members, offsetting the audience's tendency to focus on the vocalist.
And yes, his vocals were on point. No, he wasn't Scott Weiland, but Bennington gave the original vocalist his due without adding too much of his own flair, instead allowing the band to perform as one cohesive unit.
Even when the band was performing new tunes, fans were gleefully cheering them on. For an hour and a half, Bennington spoke sparingly and instead allowed the music to speak for itself. It was exactly how it was supposed to be.
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