Mudhoney Frontman Calls STP a 'Copycat Band'

Mark Arm also rips Bush and Silverchair.

logo
Ultimate Guitar
0
Discussing the early days of grunge, Mudhoney frontman Mark Arm singled out a few acts he considers the scene's copycats, most notably the Stone Temple Pilots.

The frontman is considered to be the one responsible for coining the word "grunge," and as he explains it, the term initially didn't refer to the specific musical genre. "Before it became a noun it was used as an adjective," Arm told Tone Deaf. "You know, like, 'It's a grungy sounding guitar,' If you just sort of apply that to a small group of bands in Seattle, some of who sound slicker than others, that really works for me. But I don't really care about it."

Mark continued, taking a brief jab at a few prominent acts along the way. "A couple of years ago we were getting questions about the grunge movement and that just sort of seemed strange to me," he said. "What most people were talking about was a handful of bands that started in Seattle, and then maybe afterwards there were sort of copycat bands around the world - Bush in the UK, Stone Temple Pilots in California, and Silverchair in Australia.

"I think what was happening in Seattle was an organic thing because these were a small group of people going to shows and seeing each other play. It wasn't a movement. It wasn't like a worldwide thing."

Would you consider any of these bands a copycat act? Let us know in the comments.

60 comments sorted by best / new / date

comments policy
    hudsonstradlin
    that's not at all how he meant it. grunge is the Seattle sound of the late 80s, early 90s. when bands had the same sound but were not from Seattle, that's who he's calling copycat bands. don't try to stir up sh-t where it doesn't exist, UG.
    codyjt5150
    Whoever the editor is need to be fired. Misleading titles are lies. It's almost like UG is a subsidiary of Fox News or something.
    Eifler121
    The headline isn't misleading at all. He calls STP out explicitly. Other bands, too, but STP is the biggest.
    Pyrotechie
    It doesn't mean he's actually BASHING them, you dingus. He's bashing misuse of the word "Grunge" on bands that weren't from Seattle.
    vikkyvik
    ...And nowhere in the article or title does it say he WAS bashing them. I actually don't find the title particularly misleading.
    bit64
    UG misleading title skill just leveled up.
    slush
    Most of the time I'd agree with you, but I think the headline was actually pretty accurate this time.
    bit64
    the title makes it sound much more aggressive,in my opinion.Furthermore,he is not calling just STP copycats.That is why i call it misleading,not inaccurate.
    j-mac71
    not at all, thats paraphrasing at its very worst. He meant copycat-ing the grunge sound not copycat-ing his own band which is what the title suggests. If the title had the operative 'seattle grunge copycat' in some form it wouldve been accurate. needless to say I'd like more articles on bands ive never heard of on this site, not bands who are in their 2nd+ decade
    a drummer
    Misleading title..again STP was "grunge" for core, Which doesn't even sound grungy. They just got a lot of "Nirvana ripoff" flak for their song Creep. By the time they released Purple, they we're just a big Alternative Rock band that proved to be just as influential as some of the big Seattle bands.
    StellarMILRock3
    If this guy knew ANYTHING about Silverchair he would know they grew into anything but a copycat band. Their first two albums yes, they did sound very grunge. But in Neon Ballroom and Diorama they progressed into something so much bigger and more dynamic. Plus, Daniel Johns was 15 and 17 years old when those first 2 albums came out, cut him some slack the kid was probably just young, angsty and loved grunge!
    Vicryl 2.0
    and then young modern came out.
    StellarMILRock3
    Ugh sometimes I try to forget that. I've never had one of my favorite bands growing up disappoint me with a new album as much as when Silverchair released Young Modern.
    javdoc
    Not sure why we're still having this discussion 20 years on, but his perspective is correct, at least as far as who was on the Seattle scene and who came after, aping the same kind of sound. Bush being the most blatant copy of one of the Seattle bands. STP at least wrote some good original songs of their own, but for sure they were trying to capture the Seattle vibe. I can see why some of the Seattle guys would take it as an insult, but it's also complimentary at the same time....
    swave75
    I think as STP made more music their sound changed. "Core" is nothing like "No. 4". By the time they made "No. 4" they had quit sounding like whatever was popular and just wanted to be their own band. Mark Arm is sort of right though the Smashing Pumpkins were from Chicago and they are right up there with the Seattle grunge movement. He forgot to mention them.
    Mud Martian
    A more accurate title for this article is already partly in the article. "Mudhoney Frontman Discusses Early Days of Grunge". It never ceases to amaze me how this and many other news sites will twist an incredibly harmless statement into sounding like an aggressive verbal assault. This has nothing to do with him calling STP a copycat. He simply stated that there were copycat bands following the explosion of Seattle's music scene into the mainstream. Simply a fact, not an insult. Grunge was a short-lived thing, but it set a foundation for many great bands to build off of for years after it "died". Even today, there are tinges of it's influence throughout the modern rock scene, even if grunge itself is the music of a former generation's youth, and most of today's youth wouldn't enjoy it. Of course, I see very little reason to really be talking about Grunge anymore. It's all been said and done already.
    Redsectoreh
    No shit. It's called post-grunge for a reason.
    badfish_lewis
    Makes more sense to blame it on the media for lumping pretty much every new rock band from 88-94 into one large pot and slapping a label on it.
    soundgarden1986
    Core is pretty obviously hopping on the grunge train but honestly, everything after Purple is pretty not grunge. And it's not like Mark Arm was the first person to say this anyway
    KingV911
    First time I heard of these guys is when Chris Farley was up on stage saying "Kill whitey!" and "I sure could go for somepeanut butter cups about now...".
    Jmoarguitar
    They could very well be a copycat band, doesn't meant hey didn't write some kick ass stuff. Their later stuff wasn't as hot though.
    Jrhammett
    blah blah so what grunge is a genre as most people know it and if you bands dont want to be famous then dont play gigs i guess. its funny how bands who arent realavant always talk about not being about money and fame. for the record i do like mudhoney!
    Anjohl
    Weiland was nothing but a vocal chamaleon. Sometimes apeing Vedder, sometimes Cobain, sometimes Layne, whatever would get them airplay. STP were the complete antithesis of alternative. It's funny, STP were to that era what people accuse KISS of being, yet the former gets no flack for it.
    fras1788
    andddd the award for the Most Misleading Title goes tooooo..... UG! CONGRATS!!!
    AlexGreat123
    This is why the term grunge is a shit description. For those of us who listen to a lot of the bands from the time the only similar thing between the bands was probably loads of distortion and the lyrical content.
    Jacques Nel
    If it weren't for a Nirvana DVD I watched, I wouldn't have even known who this guy was.
    DickHardwood
    Kurt Cobain would have hated you.
    Redsectoreh
    Comments like this always make me laugh; when people speak on Kurts behalf like they personally knew the guy.
    DickHardwood
    I wasn't really going for that, I just wanted a creative insult and I guess it backfired. Happens.
    ytrappin
    kurt cobain hated everything but heroin and his daughter. he would of hated to have you speak for him while we're at it.
    lefty311
    UG now posting articles that are improperly titles, but also taking interviews out of context all in the name of PAGE CLICKS!