Take a look at the evolution of Weezer. See how simple, yet perfect they were in the mid-90s? It was the pop answer to grunge that society so needed in the 90s. After Kurt offed himself, he kind of offed grunge in the mainstream after that.
But Weezer was our savior. It was the “emo” of the time. Not that I’m at all comparing Weezer to the shitty-ass mass produced anthems of the black-haired pussies of the mid-00s. But Weezer WAS the youth culture. Who didn’t connect with the Blue Album? And who didn’t think that Pinkerton didn’t get the praise it deserved when it first came out? I mean, Rolling Stone readers fucking voted Pinkerton the second worst album of 1996. Were they all smoking crack? This was before Whitney Houston came out and said “crack is whack!”
What makes old-school Weezer better than new school Weezer is that even though the Blue Album and Pinkerton were released when I was still so freaking enamored with Ren & Stimpy and Nickelodeon slime, those songs never get old. They’re still relevant. People still feel the same. Youth culture never really changed all that much. And I can’t tell you how many times I hear “Buddy Holly” on 107.7 The End during the week. It’s a lot.
So what’s the point of this post exactly? Well, Raditude just came out, and I have mixed feelings. Based on its Weezer-ness, it sucks, but based on its all-around musical merit, it’s adequate. I wouldn’t say great, but not bad. It’s confusing me, hearing Rivers singing about partying and being all “I’m your daddy,” like maybe Rivers is having a mid-life crisis. Maybe he’s getting so close to 40 that he had to write all these songs that would resonate with the hip youths of today’s MTV crowd. Like another review said, not sure where, but I’ll put it in quotes anyway – “It’s like all Rivers is doing to trying to make songs that would sound kickass on Rock Band.”
In a way, I’m hoping that this is a weird mid-life crisis, like my aunt’s crazy dolphin tattoo on her ankle and my dad’s sudden urge to listen to indie rock and wear jeans with flaps over the pockets. Maybe Lil Wayne was Rivers’ key to those who go apeshit over Lauren Conrad instead of Carson Daly how it’s supposed to be.
Seriously, take a listen to Can’t Stop Partying. It’s hella catchy and danceable, but not the same band that once rocked out with the Muppets and wrote a song about a damn sweater.
I liked Weezer’s quarterlife crisis. Their mid-life crisis is getting kinda old. Make Believe was when it all started, and the Red Album was a small redemption from it, cause it was so damn catchy, but now Raditude is going in a whole new direction (crossing my fingers that its an ironic one). Maybe I need to see Weezer live to “get” the whole idea behind Raditude. Because I’ve heard from MULTIPLE sources that Weezer is fucking AMAZING live.
I want to be critical, because that’s technically what I am, but I don’t want to be so critical that I come off as a Pitchfork groupie. Seriously, Pitchfork has gotten ridiculous. Sure when it comes to good albums, they mostly get it right, like with a 9.6 they gave Merriweather Post Pavilion (still reminds me, I have to make my list of the best albums of the DECADE!), but when it comes to albums that are so-so, Pitchfork surely judges mainstream albums much harsher than indie ones. I’m not trying to toot my own horn here, but I’m pretty sure Pitchfork is just a bunch of self-righteous hipsters sitting in their office on their Macs trying to find ways to make the album reviews all about their own flowery prose (it takes one to know one, I know.) And I’ve been reading some other reviews to get a feel of how people are reacting to it, and I don’t wanna hear any, “bands change all the time, they can do whatever they want,” because as much as that’s true – we all truly love the mid-90s era Weezer. I’m not against bands evolving – but all-around change is another thing (All-American Rejects is another example. Their new album makes me really sad, and Tyson needs to get rid of the glitter and put the damn bass back over his shoulder, damnit!).
I’ve had such a weird couple weeks that I felt like I needed to sit down late at night and write about something that I truly know about, and that I don’t have to recollect anything to write a comprehensive blog post. And music is that thing. I just hope – PRAYING TO AN IMPERVIOUS GOD – that I can get myself a pass to Deck the Hall Ball (oh right, The End hasn’t “officially” released any information about it yet, but I just saw a few days ago on Right Arm Entertainment that Muse, Phoenix, Vampire Weekend, Metric, and 30 Seconds to Mars will be playing. Oh, and guess what? They just changed it to “acts TBA.” Someone must have dropped the ball. OOPS. And it’s also a clue that Red, the morning DJ has been hinting at. Just the other day she said right as “1901” started playing, “I wonder when Phoenix is coming to Seattle. I hope it’s soon.” Don’t even, Red. Don’t even.)
Wow, I went off on a longer tangent than I thought right there.
You take a listen for yourself – most of the songs are on HypeMachine. Do you approve of Weezer’s possibly desperate, possibly ironic want for hip-ness?
I’m still split myself. But I do have Pinkerton to keep me happy. And of course River’s “Alone” home recordings. Those are splendid.