Purple established that Stone Temple Pilots were not one-album wonders but Tiny Music...Songs from the Vatican Gift Shop illustrates that the band aren't content with resting on their laurels. Without abandoning their trademark hard rock, STP have added a new array of sounds that lend depth to their immediately accessible hooks. Dean DeLeo layers his guitar tracks to create distinctive, multi-textured sounds that make his riffs more powerful. Though there are hints of grunge scattered throughout the album, what makes Tiny Music impressive is how the band brings in elements of psychedelia, trancy shoegaze, jangle pop, and other forms of melodic alternative guitar pop. By accentuating their pop tendencies in both their riffs and melodies, they are able to slip in a number of creative arrangements which manage to expand their musical repertoire significantly. Although the lyrics are nearly as ambitious as the music, they simply don't have the same weight. But with a band like Stone Temple Pilots, the music is what matters and Tiny Music showcases the band at their most tuneful and creative.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine