Alt-rock nostalgia hung heavy in the pot-scented air Saturday night at Irvine’s Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, where recently resuscitated versions of Sublime, Stone Temple Pilots, Hole and Devo played KROQ-FM’s annual Weenie Roast concert.
“You guys remember this little ditty,” Courtney Love assured the sold-out crowd before revving up the serrated grunge pop of Hole’s 1998 hit “Celebrity Skin.” And sure enough, the audience roared in recognition, seemingly grateful for something familiar after a handful of tunes from “Nobody’s Daughter,” the unremarkable Hole album Love and a cast of new bandmates released earlier this year.
Other acts echoed Love’s acknowledgment of a creeping sense of cultural obsolescence.
“Here’s one you might remember,” said Mark Mothersbaugh of Devo, introducing that group’s early-MTV staple “Whip It.”
Later, Stone Temple Pilots frontman Scott Weiland pulled a telling fake-out, baiting fans with the prospect of “another new one” from the group’s just-released self-titled effort, then launching into “Plush,” its 1992 smash. The feeling of relief inside Verizon was palpable.