Earlier this week in San Fransisco, The Shins commenced their highly-anticipated “Oh, Inverted World 21st Birthday Tour.” In addition to running through the entire tracklist of the seminal 2001 album, the indie rock veterans had a few surprises in the mix, including a cover of the 1994 Stone Temple Pilots hit “Vasoline.”
Stone Temple Pilots sure seem like a random choice for The Shins to cover. Though both bands are undoubtedly highly influential in their own right, the former was largely affiliated with the ’90s grunge movement in their early years, while James Mercer has become perhaps one of the most important voices in this century’s indie rock. But “Vasoline,” which appeared on STP’s sophomore album Purple, is still a banger, so we’re certainly not complaining.
The Shins do a pretty good job handling the grungy sound of “Vasoline,” too, wah-wah bass pedals and all. In some endearing fan-captured video footage, you can see Mercer reading the lyrics straight from his phone, beaming in-between verses. (Normalize not knowing the words to songs!) Watch The Shins do “Vasoline” below.
The Shins will continue their “Oh, Inverted World 21st Birthday Tour” through September; get your tickets at Ticketmaster, and read Consequence‘s recap of the first night here. Last month, Noah Weiland — son of late STP singer Scott Weiland — released his debut solo EP Last Kiss Before Detox.