Sound — 10
Shangri-La Dee Da was a goofy title for this album, but the band's sound was great on several tracks. Several heavy songs, several light-hearted acoustic-based numbers and a few experimental sounding songs gave this album a good mix. Dean had several good solos and melodic riffs as indicaed in the "Overall" section. Robert still plays great bass lines, sometimes heavy - sometimes jazzy, and writes well arranged music with Dean. Eric Kretz plays some of his best drum parts in this STP album, reminding me of several songs off the Purple album.
Lyrics — 9
Scott Weiland still shows his immense singing skills in this album, varying his voice from a soft singing tenor in "Hello, It's Late" and "Days of the Week"; a singing, shouting and speaking part in "Regerneration"; and swaggering low pitch raspy vocals in "Hollywood Bitch". He also touches on family aspects in his lyrics, for example "Hello, It's Late" and "Wonderful" touch on his relationship to his Wife Mary, and "A Song for Sleeping" is about his son who was a baby at the time. Overall I was really satisfied with his vocals, and I hope that he can keep himself clean and sober to continue making music like this.
Overall Impression — 9
This album was not as commercially popular as the first two albums but they continued to inject variety and superb musicianship. My impression of the tracks is as follows. 01.Dumb love: has a great heavy main riff and solo by Dean 02.Days of the Week: has a catchy pop acoustic/electric riff with good vocals 03.Coma: disturbing, with synth sound effects and heavy guitar riff and solo, similar to track 1. Not quite as good though. 04.Hollywood Bitch: the second single to hit Rock radio stations, and not a particularly strong one. It has intersting chromatic riffs and cliche lyrics about celebrities that lead fake lives to gain attention and status. 05.Wonderful: a pretty well written love song, but it could have had shorter PreChorus/Chorus to make it stick out more. Has some good melodic guitar playing. 06.Black Again: this song has an awesome guitar riff and could have been a good single, but its vocals and overall feel made it one of the softer songs. Robert's 5-string bass work was really good in this song! 07.Hello It's Late: it has nice shimmering chords and a short guitar solo, but again it is a softer song. 08.Too Cool Queenie: I thought that the lyrics of this one were the worst of the album, but the main guitar riff was ok. Has a fairly good solo too. 09.Regeneration: a very experimental song with simple guitar riffs, a series of shouted lyrics and constant bass drum beats that build to an immense chorus. The guitar lead parts in the middle of the song are also pretty cool. This was one of my favorites. 10.Bi-Polar Bear: probably my favorite. Has a jazzy-sounding acoustic main riff with soft drums and vocals that build to a rousing chorus with heavy distorted guitars and great drum fills! The guitar solo was also very tasteful and had some great minor scale licks in it. I even liked the way that the song ended, progressing back to a simple acoustic riff. 11.Transmissions from a Lonely Room: has a interesting layered riffs with both heavy sounding and pop/psychodelic-influenced passages. The layered r&b-influenced vocals are also interesting. 12.A Song for Sleeping: a softly played inspirational song with pop rhythms and a falsetto vocal that actually fits perfectly! A nice touch on the album, with good acoustic work in it. 13.Long Way Home: a rough sounding psychadelic song with eerie echoing vocals and a heavy guitar/bass riff. Definitely worth a listen. Overall the songs are original compositions, which I have always expected from this group. If you liked other STP songs or albums, or most post grunge modern rock artists, you will love this album.