If you can’t get the image of Scott Stapp’s sex tape with Kid Rock out of your head – and shame on you for even looking at it! – perhaps his new music will help erase those images out of your mind. On November 5 Stapp releases his latest solo album, “Proof of Life.”
This is Stapp’s second solo outing, a full eight years after “The Great Divide,” his first stab at going it alone. Musically, Stapp is better known for his role as front man for Creed, which is famous for hit songs like “With Arms Wide Open” and “Higher.” Stylistically, it’s tough to differentiate Stapp solo from Stapp with Creed. If you like Creed, you’ll also enjoy “Proof of Life.”
Say what you will about Stapp’s personal life, and too much has probably already been said, but the man is one fine gravelly lead singer. When he sings with great compassion on the empathetic “Only One,” you’re convinced he really cares. “I will be the first hand reaching out,” he offers, “I will be last one giving up.” He could also be taking Christ’s role in this song. But whoever he is, he’s effective.
However, Stapp is not always so convincing lyrically. With “Jesus Was A RockStar,” Stapp comes off more like a bad Third Day imitator, on a song more on Third Day’s level and below him. Anything that refers to Jesus as anything other than God in flesh is a little demeaning to the Holy One. Just as Jesus is not our homie, he’s also not a rock star.
Stapp knows a thing or two about the pitfalls of being a rock star. Most importantly, though, he still has the goods to sing like an honest-to-goodness rock star. “Proof of Life” is living proof that the boy’s still got it.