Purple (Stone Temple Pilots album)

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Studio album by Stone Temple Pilots
Released June 7, 1994
Recorded "Big Empty" recorded May 25, 1993 at the Record Plant, "Lounge Fly" recorded July 12, 1993, rest of album recorded in March 1994 at Southern Tracks Recording, Atlanta, GA, "Pretty Penny" recorded at Harptone Studios
Length 46:59
Label Atlantic
Producer Brendan O'Brien
Stone Temple Pilots chronology
Tiny Music... Songs from the Vatican Gift Shop
(1996)Tiny Music... Songs from the Vatican Gift Shop1996
Singles from Purple
  1. "Big Empty"
    Released: May 22, 1994
  2. "Vasoline"
    Released: June 1, 1994
  3. "Interstate Love Song"
    Released: September 9, 1994
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic4/5 stars[1]
Christgau's Consumer Guide(dud)[4]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music4/5 stars[2]
Entertainment WeeklyB−[3]
Rolling Stone3/5 stars[5]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide3.5/5 stars[6]
Select2/5 medals[7]

Purple is the second studio album by the American rock band Stone Temple Pilots, released on June 7, 1994 by Atlantic Records. The album, building off the foundations laid by the band's debut album Core, was a huge success for the band, debuting at #1 on the Billboard 200 chart and remaining there for three weeks, eventually selling over six million copies. It spawned a number of successful singles — "Vasoline" and "Interstate Love Song" both topped the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart and hit number 2 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart, while "Big Empty" also cracked the top ten on both charts. Lesser known album cuts "Pretty Penny" and "Unglued" were also released as promotional radio singles.

Background and musical style[edit]

The album's first single, "Big Empty", made its debut at STP's MTV Unplugged acoustic performance in 1993. The song would later appear on the soundtrack to The Crow. The Crow soundtrack reached number #1 in 1994 and a couple of weeks later, Purple reached the top of the charts, thus making two for the band in 1994.

The lyric "She said she'd be my woman, she said she'd be my man" from "Lounge Fly" also appears on the Mighty Joe Young Demo, in the song "Spanish Flies". Paul Leary of the Butthole Surfers is credited with playing the ending guitar solo in "Lounge Fly".

While Purple features elements of grunge like its predecessor, Core, the album displays the band developing a sound influenced by other genres, such as the psychedelic rock evident in "Lounge Fly" and "Silvergun Superman", the country vibes of "Interstate Love Song" and blues rock elements of "Big Empty". Allmusic's Stephen Erlewine wrote that "Purple is a quantum leap over [Core], showcasing a band hitting their stride." Erlewine also described "Interstate Love Song" as a "concise epic as alluring as the open highway" and "Big Empty" as "a perfect encapsulation of mainstream alienation."[8]


The cover for the album features an animated photo of a child riding on a Qilin accompanied by a quintet of fairies above the creature and the child, taking place on a cloudy background. The album title is written as a Chinese character, zǐ (紫), on the cover, and nowhere else on the packaging (with exception of the UK and European limited edition vinyl release).[9]

No track listing appears on the back cover, which instead displays the image of a cake with the phrase "12 Gracious Melodies".

On the cover of the cassette version of Purple, the child is holding the Chinese character in his hand, and it is not in the corner. There are two pressings of the actual disc in Purple CDs. One version has flowers on it and another has dragon scales.[10]

The vinyl LP release is made from colored vinyl - transparent purple in the US and UK release and a limited edition opaque marbled vinyl in a softer shade of purple available only in the UK and Europe.[11]

On analogue formats (LP and cassette) of the original release, the album title is shown as simply Stone Temple Pilots on the tape shells and LP labels.


In 2005, Purple was ranked number 438 in Rock Hard magazine's book of The 500 Greatest Rock & Metal Albums of All Time.[12] In 2006, the album was ranked number 73 on Guitar World magazine's list of the 100 greatest guitar albums of all time. In May 2014, Loudwire placed Purple at number six on its "10 Best Hard Rock Albums of 1994" list.[13] In July 2014, Guitar World ranked Purple at number 24 in their "Superunknown: 50 Iconic Albums That Defined 1994" list.[14]

Track listing[edit]

All lyrics written by Scott Weiland.

1."Meatplow"Robert DeLeo, Dean DeLeo3:37
2."Vasoline"R. DeLeo, D. DeLeo, Weiland, Eric Kretz2:56
3."Lounge Fly"R. DeLeo5:18
4."Interstate Love Song"R. DeLeo3:14
5."Still Remains"R. DeLeo, D. DeLeo3:33
6."Pretty Penny"D. DeLeo3:42
7."Silvergun Superman"R. DeLeo, D. DeLeo5:16
8."Big Empty"D. DeLeo4:54
9."Unglued"Weiland, R. DeLeo2:34
10."Army Ants"D. DeLeo3:46
11."Kitchenware & Candybars" (see below)R. DeLeo8:06
Total length:46:59


Purple tour concert ticket from 1994

The opening of track 3, "Lounge Fly", was used as the theme for MTV News's short MTV News Break segments for several years in the mid-1990s.

Track 11, "Kitchenware & Candybars", contains a hidden track named "My Second Album", which is a parody of most hidden tracks being unorthodox songs that a band wouldn't usually make. The lounge song was performed by Richard Peterson, a musician who happens to be a big fan of Johnny Mathis, hence the reference to him in the song as well as the similar cover of Olé.[15]

The Japanese release of this album contains a bonus track, a live version of "Andy Warhol", as track #12.


Stone Temple Pilots

  • Scott Weiland – all vocals, guitar on "Silvergun Superman", percussion on "Pretty Penny"
  • Dean DeLeo – electric and acoustic guitars, percussion on "Pretty Penny", drum ending on "Silvergun Superman"
  • Robert DeLeo – bass, guitars on "Meatplow", "Vasoline", "Pretty Penny", "Silvergun Superman" and "Kitchenware & Candybars", percussion on "Pretty Penny"
  • Eric Kretz – drums, percussion on "Vasoline", "Lounge Fly", "Pretty Penny" and "Big Empty"

Additional personnel

  • Brendan O'Brien – producer, recording, mixing, percussion on "Meatplow", "Interstate Love Song", "Silvergun Superman", "Army Ants" and "Kitchenware & Candybars", guitar on "Kitchenware & Candybars", mellotron on "Army Ants"
  • Nick DiDia – engineer
  • Caram Costanzo – assistant engineer
  • Clay Harper – mastering
  • Paul Leary – ending guitar solo on "Lounge Fly"
  • John Heiden – design
  • Dale Sizer – illustrations


Weekly charts[edit]

Chart (1994) Peak
Australian Albums (ARIA)[16] 1
Austrian Albums (Ö3 Austria)[17] 18
Canadian Albums (RPM)[18] 2
Dutch Albums (MegaCharts)[19] 32
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[20] 15
New Zealand Albums (RMNZ)[21] 3
Norwegian Albums (VG-lista)[22] 11
Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[23] 6
Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[24] 25
UK Albums (OCC)[25] 10
US Billboard 200[26] 1

Decade-end charts[edit]

Chart (1990–1999) Position
US Billboard 200[27] 99


Title Year Peak chart positions



Main. Rock

"Big Empty" 1994 50 7 3 63 47
"Vasoline" 38 2 1 24 21 28 48
"Interstate Love Song" 22 18 2 1 50 20 47 53
"Unglued" 16 8 64
"Pretty Penny" 1995 12


Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Australia (ARIA)[36] Platinum 70,000^
Canada (Music Canada)[37] 3× Platinum 300,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[38] Silver 60,000^
United States (RIAA)[39] 6× Platinum 6,000,000^


  1. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Purple - Stone Temple Pilots". Allmusic. Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  2. ^ Larkin, Colin (2011). "Stone Temple Pilots". The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th concise ed.). Omnibus Press. ISBN 0-85712-595-8. 
  3. ^ David Browne (1994-06-10). "Purple Review | News Reviews and News". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  4. ^ Christgau, Robert (2000-10-15). "Stone Temple Pilots". Christgau's Consumer Guide: Albums of the '90s. Macmillan Publishing. ISBN 9780312245603. 
  5. ^ Ali, Lorraine (1994-07-14). "Stone Temple Pilots: Purple : Music Reviews". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 2008-12-02. Retrieved 2012-08-23. 
  6. ^ Sheffield, Rob (2004). "Stone Temple Pilots". The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th ed.). Simon & Schuster. p. 785. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  7. ^ Wilkinson, Roy (20 February 2013). "Stone Temple Pilots: Purple". Select: 87. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  8. ^ Purple - Stone Temple Pilots : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards : AllMusic
  9. ^ http://s.dsimg.com/image/R-2718967-1297953608.jpeg[permanent dead link]
  10. ^ Below Empty - FAQ
  11. ^ "Stone Temple Pilots - Purple (Vinyl, LP, Album) at Discogs". Discogs.com. Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  12. ^ [...], Rock Hard (Hrsg.). [Red.: Michael Rensen. Mitarb.: Götz Kühnemund] (2005). Best of Rock & Metal die 500 stärksten Scheiben aller Zeiten. Königswinter: Heel. p. 33. ISBN 3-89880-517-4. 
  13. ^ "10 Best Hard Rock Albums of 1994". Loudwire. May 20, 2014. Retrieved May 21, 2014. 
  14. ^ "Superunknown: 50 Iconic Albums That Defined 1994". GuitarWorld.com. July 14, 2014. Retrieved July 14, 2014. 
  15. ^ Ole
  16. ^ "Australiancharts.com – Stone Temple Pilots – Purple". Hung Medien. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  17. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Stone Temple Pilots – Purple" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  18. ^ "Top Albums/CDs – Volume 59, No. 23". RPM. Walt Grealis. June 27, 1994. Archived from the original on November 10, 2012. Retrieved December 14, 2012. 
  19. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Stone Temple Pilots – Purple" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  20. ^ "Longplay-Chartverfolgung at Musicline" (in German). Musicline.de. Phononet GmbH. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  21. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Stone Temple Pilots – Purple". Hung Medien. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  22. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Stone Temple Pilots – Purple". Hung Medien. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  23. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Stone Temple Pilots – Purple". Hung Medien. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  24. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Stone Temple Pilots – Purple". Hung Medien. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  25. ^ "Stone Temple Pilots | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  26. ^ "Stone Temple Pilots Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  27. ^ Geoff Mayfield (December 25, 1999). 1999 The Year in Music Totally '90s: Diary of a Decade - The listing of Top Pop Albums of the '90s & Hot 100 Singles of the '90s. Billboard. Retrieved October 15, 2010. 
  28. ^ "Stone Temple Pilots – Chart History: Pop Songs". Billboard. Retrieved December 14, 2012. 
  29. ^ Stone Temple Pilots - Hot 100 Airplay (Radio Songs) chart history billboard.com. Retrieved August 14, 2016.
  30. ^ "Stone Temple Pilots – Chart History: Alternative Songs". Billboard. Retrieved February 23, 2013. 
  31. ^ "Stone Temple Pilots – Chart History: Mainstream Rock Tracks". Billboard. Retrieved February 23, 2013. 
  32. ^ Peak chart positions for singles in Australia:
    • Top 50 peaks: "Discography Stone Temple Pilots". australian-charts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved September 12, 2012. 
    • Top 100 peaks to December 2010: Ryan, Gavin (2011). Australia's Music Charts 1988–2010. Mt. Martha, VIC, Australia: Moonlight Publishing. 
  33. ^ Peak chart positions for singles in Canada:
  34. ^ "Discography Stone Temple Pilots". charts.org.nz. Hung Medien. Retrieved September 12, 2012. 
  35. ^ Peak chart positions for singles in the United Kingdom:
  36. ^ Ryan, Gavin (2011). Australia's Music Charts 1988–2010. Mt. Martha, VIC, Australia: Moonlight Publishing. 
  37. ^ "Canadian album certifications – Stone Temple Pilots – Purple". Music Canada. 
  38. ^ "British album certifications – Stone Temple Pilots – Purple". British Phonographic Industry.  Select albums in the Format field. Select Silver in the Certification field. Enter Purple in the search field and then press Enter.
  39. ^ "American album certifications – Stone Temple Pilots – Purple". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH.