Velvet Revolver is everything good and bad about rock music. Over the years the band members have all saturated themselves with the life-style afforded many non-discerning rock stars. If you read any publications about the band you will find a history of drug and alcohol abuse, and hedonistic living. It seems that they have pulled themselves off of the self-destructive freeway and decided to survive and make some great music.
Velvet Revolver are Scott Weiland (formerly of Stone Temple Pilots) on vocals, Slash (formally of GnR fame) on guitar, Duff McKagan (also formally from GnR) on bass, Matt Sorum (again formally from GnR) on drums, and Dave Kushner (formally of Wasted Youth) on guitar. All of this to say that the band is made up of former super groups. With this fact there have been great expectations attached to this band. Their first release “Contraband” lived up to these expectations and then some. With the combination of Scott Weiland’s crooning vocals and Slash’s driving force guitars it was hard to go wrong. But now with the release of their sophomore effort, released July 3rd, 2007, can the revolvers again do justice to the expectations?
The new album is called “Libertad“; I will have to admit I had to look up what it meant. It is just Spanish for liberty. The album itself feels more commercial than their first so it makes me wonder if they were given freedom on this album or is this the direction the band decided to go following “Contraband”. I am not saying that the commercial feel is a bad thing but I tend to find more experimentation from a group when they follow up a successful debut. (Contraband sold over 3 million copies) Although it is hard to refer to an album by these guys as a debut since they have all been recording music for over twenty years or more.