Were it not for the well-publicized substance abuse and legal troubles of singer Scott Weiland, Stone Temple Pilots -- the unlikely headliner for the tour Korn and Limp Bizkit founded -- wouldn't fit this bill. At least the band has grown over its five albums and several forced hiatuses, moving further into psychedelia and fulfilling the promise of its work -- which, for all of the accusations of Pearl Jam plagiarism, ultimately comes across as the grunge-pop answer to the Guess Who. This is a time for being kinder and gentler; after all, niceness and longing are about all the market will bear after the terrorist attacks. And so, STP's presence in Family Values' top slot works accidentally. Not only will STP add some sugar to the bitter cup that is the festival's lineup; it will also try to gain favor with the audience that abandoned it and what used to be called "alternative" for the rap-rock posturings of the curiously absent tour founders. Limp Bizkit's Fred Durst isn't on this year's tour because he's busy working with Bono on a recording of Marvin Gaye's "What's Going On?" He's also using his band's website to plead with his disgruntled fan base to not take out its anger over September 11. In other words, he's being the pop star he's claimed he's not, even long before he incited a riot at Woodstock '99 by saying he felt like "breaking some shit." He's better off in the studio with Bono, rethinking his toilet humor and watching the ticker on MSNBC to see how far his stock may have fallen.
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