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Pinkerton (Deluxe Edition)
Weezer

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Jun 14, 2019

This revolutionary album by the geeky pop-rock band took alt-rock in a completely new direction

Weezer (Blue Album), recently turned 25, and has attained a cult status with numerous critics rating it to be as one of the greatest albums of the decade. With two new albums this year, which continue the tradition of being self-titled and color coded, Weezer still attempts to ride on the nostalgic value of their debut album. However, these new records have failed to even remotely reach the heights that the Blue Album did. The videos of “Buddy Holly”, and “Undone-The Sweater Song” are still fresh in the minds of 90s kids who were brought up on MTV. This album launched Weezer into mainstream popularity. The simple album cover featuring the four band members standing in front of a plain blue back ground became iconic, and they retained this design for all their other self titled albums with a variation in the color according to the album name. The self-titled debut album by Weezer was an unexpected success. It came out at the time of the grunge wave taking over the scene, but the album was far from grunge. With the sweater clad and bespectacled Harvard educated lead singer singing about his failure to get women, and making tons of cultural references such as dungeons and dragons and comic book characters, Weezer brought in a new wave of nerd rock. It is this very anti-rock star element of theirs which made them fascinating and popular. The singer/song writer of the band Rivers Cuomo, who is known for his anti-social awkward demeanor, had a modest upbringing at the Satchidananda Ashram or Yogaville. Rivers claims the moment he heard the KISS record Rock and Roll Over to be a significant turning point in his life. Rivers was soon gravitated to artists such as Scorpions, Metallica, and Quiet Riot, and described himself as a metal head. He even started his own metal bands in high school. The metal roots can be seen in their songs such as Undone- the sweater song. By the end of high school, Rivers no longer restricted himself to metal. Apart from being a Beatles and Beach Boys fan, he began appreciating pop music such as Prince and Madonna. He was heavily inspired by bands such as Nirvana and Pixies, and started writing material which would soon find its way onto the Blue Album. Rivers met his other band members while playing with other bands across Los Angeles. The band member had varied music tastes, and all these different influences culminated in producing a distinct sound which had elements of rock, pop, metal, punk, emo, and garage. Before the release of the album, they performed much of their material but barely got any recognition. The first single released off the album was Undone-the sweater song. The song, along with its video became an instant hit on MTV. On this album, Rivers writes about his adolescence and youth, and attempts to create anthems for his generation. The three singles- Undone-the sweater song, “Say it Ain’t So”, and Buddy Holly, found their way onto the Top 40 charts in the USA. These hooks filled, earwormy pop-rock numbers to which one could sing along, were made for the radio. However, what makes this album timeless is not just the catchiness of it, but the lyrics which are surprisingly dark as compared to the uplifting sound of it. In contrast to dark sound of grunge which dominated the alternative music scene, Weezer gave a more melodic happy sound to emo music. Their music became a significant voice of an entire generation and appeased to not only the more casual radio listeners, but the emo kids as well. After the enormous success of the debut album, their second album Pinkerton, in which Rivers explores much darker themes and sounds, was completely different from their debut. This album was more confessional and personal, and came from a dark place in Rivers’ life, where he writes about sexual frustration, living an ascetic life, and of lonely days at Harvard. It did not perform well and received a lot of criticism at the time of its release. However, with the mainstream popularity of the emo scene, the album became an underground favorite. Pinkerton has been cited as an influence for a lot of emo bands of that time. With its brutal honesty and raw feel, Pinkerton, along with the Blue Album, is now regarded as one of their best albums. At the time of its release and even now, Rivers admits that the album was a mistake and an embarrassment. He scorns at the cult status that the album has now gained. After this album, Weezer returned back to the sound of the Blue Album. On their third self-titled Green Album, they stuck to their initial formula of peppy catchy songs with impersonal lyrics. Weezer continues to employ this formula of retaining a clean and happy sound, but none of their recent albums preserve the authenticity of the Blue Album.

Written by @Soulbyweekly from SoulByweekly
Mar 04, 2019

Like A Bunch Of Out-Of-Touch Dads, Weezer Release Yet-Another Dud With The Teal Album

When I was growing up in the nineties, there was nothing more beneficial to my ragamuffin adolescence than the introduction of Alternative- & Garage-Rock techniques in the Rock music space, this new breed of heavily-distorted, Punk-adjacent music beautifully summing up what it meant to be a kid in the age of baggy-panted skateboard culture. Bands like The Verve, Blur & The Smashing Pumpkins gave the subculture-obsessed youth of the time a sound of rebellion to voice their discomfort through, giving way for Hardcore, Emo & Hard Rock to bloom into the magnificent creatures they would become in the early-nineties – Of this melodic selection, Weezer stood above & beyond their competition thanks to the absolutely riveting basslines of Matt Sharp & the self-deprecating lyrics Rivers Cuomo would sling in each narrative, making for the perfect mix of angsty sensibilities & driving Power Pop tunes to really get your emotions burning at a fever pitch, but after their freshman self-titled Blue Album & my definitive favourite record Pinkerton, the band slumped into a decades-long period of monotony that never quite caught the magic of their earlier work, due in large part to the departure of Matt Sharp & Rivers’ increasingly enlarging celebrity ego; Suddenly, they were no more original than their contemporary Pop Rock brethren OK Go, upsetting die-hard fans like myself whilst assuring we’d see nothing but disappointment in the years that followed – Over time, they started leaning into the jokiness of their existence, delving into straight up Pop on albums like Raditude & conforming to Tropical industry trends on the much-maligned Pacific Daydream, but their more recent Teal Album takes the cake for cringeworthy songwriting, forfeiting originality in favour of appeasing the internet’s ravenous desire for them to become a living, breathing meme, quickly eviscerating any integrity they had lingering in the margins.

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