MUSIC REVIEW | Weezer – Everything Will Be Alright in the End (2014)

Weezer

Weezer have spent almost two decades under the very long shadow of their first two albums. Their debut Blue album was a nerdy oasis in a flood of 90s grunge. They proved you could keep the overblown guitars, but replace the drizzle soaked Seattle angst with a poppy geek aesthetic direct from Sunny California. A couple of years later, they released the then-ignored, since-revered Pinkerton. When I wrote about Pïnkerton, I said, “Weezer is one of the most consistent bands to emerge from the 90s. I’d never give their best album anything higher than an 8/10, and their worst is probably a 6/10. Pinkerton’s right in that range too.”


Well, it seems the band also disagrees with me and sees Blue and Pinkerton as their clear high watermarks, because their latest long player, Everything Will Be Alright in the End has one of the most literal, in your face mission statements I’ve ever heard on an album. Back to the Shack, the first single from the album opens with Rivers Cuomo declaring, “Sorry guys I didn’t realize that I needed you so much. I thought I’d get a new audience, I forgot that disco sucks. I ended up with nobody and I started feeling dumb”.

I like that kind of honesty, but it would mean more if it didn’t come after album opener Aint Got Nobody, the kind of party starter that would be right at home on their Red album. But those two songs perfectly set up what you can expect from Everything Will Be Alright. While Weezer may have been attempting a return to those early albums, I see it more as series of visits to everything they’ve done up to this point.

Lonely Girl and Go Away would seamlessly fit into Blue. While I’ve Had it Up to Here, with its herky jerky rhythms and strained falsetto vocals sounds like pure Green album to me. The British Are Coming and Da Vinci are very Pinkerton­-esque, and Cleopatra reminds me of Maladroit.

I’m not sure how I feel about a band making such a concerted effort to please the fans. I don’t want a band worrying about what I’ll think about an album once they release it. I want a band worrying about what they think about it as they make it. Do they love it, is it something they’re proud of, will they love playing it live for the rest of their careers? Because that’s the kind of passion that’s gonna seep through the songs and stick with the audience.

Thankfully, Cuomo and crew pandering to their fans has resulted in yet another solid, if not ground breaking, Weezer album. But that’s just fine with me. I love AC/DC, Bad Religion is my favourite band of all time, so obviously I’m cool with bands defining their sounds early, then sticking with it for decades to come. Like everything that’s come before, I’d never give their best album anything higher than an 8/10, and their worst is probably a 6/10. Everything Will Be Alright in the End is right in that range too.

Weezer

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