Weezer is one of those bands that has been able to stick around and continue to make memorable music for years. While other rock bands from the 90s have died down, these guys have kept working and have stayed in conversations longer than most would have guessed. Even when they make bad music, people still talk about it. As a huge fan I figured I would do a run down of their discography before I review their new record this weekend.
This is the only album in Weezer’s discography I would consider actually bad on almost all levels. This is the sound of a group of grown men trying to write songs for young kids and just failing miserably. There is nothing worth praising here, none of the tracks stand out in a positive light, fans will be insulted, outsiders will think it’s trash, this is just not good. Also, Lil Wayne’s guest spot on here breaks my heart. I hope they never get this low ever again.
8. Make Believe
This album gets a lot of hate for being the album that Weezer “sold out” with. While it is not great, I enjoy Make Believe more than most and like the mellower sound it was going for. Lyrically this is not amazing, and I only enjoy “Beverly Hills” because of nostalgia, but you could do worse than this.
After Raditude, Weezer needed something to cleanse the palates of all the fans they had turned off. This was definitely a good way to remind people of why they loved them. The album itself is a tad forgettable in their discography but it is still a fun time when it’s on. I still think “Memories” is one of their better recent songs and I love the concept of naming an album after a character from Lost. Just shows why people love Weezer’s personality still.
6. Weezer (Green Album)
A bit of a comeback record for Weezer, this had the band treading more familiar territory. The absence of bassist Matt Sharp is noticeable but it definitely does not make the album bad. I actually find this record to be a nice little collection of songs that are all varying degrees of good. “Hash Pipe” and “Island In The Sun” are great additions to any Weezer setlist. I also love the closer “O Girlfriend” which is my personal favorite of the album. The short length of this, not even hitting 30 minutes, is pretty disappointing though.
Definitely a hidden gem in Weezer’s discography, this album is overlooked by most likely because it is not associated with a hit single. Even without any big stand out tracks, this album manages to remain more aggressive than the band’s other work and is very consistent in quality. It is a fun, short listen that hardcore Weezer fans should appreciate.
4. Weezer (Red Album)
This is such an underrated album in my eyes, and that is likely because of it’s like of single material. After the misstep many saw Make Believe as, this was a strong effort to appeal to fans. The lyrics focused on more personal subjects, and the inclusion of longer ballads really worked here. It might not be as great as the classic albums we are about to get to, but it is still a great, full-fledged Weezer album.
3. Everything Will Be Alright In the End
While many of Weezer’s best work since the turn of the century have been great at reminding their fans of why they love them, this is one that seems to be pushing forward rather than looking back. While keeping its promise made on “Back to the Shack” and going back to what makes them great, they are still able to make a fun rock album that is full of great tracks and memorable sounds. I am so happy this record exists and gives me so much hope for the band’s future.
2. Weezer (Blue Album)
This is definitive Weezer. Their first and most iconic album is full of personality and songs that to this day define Weezer. “Buddy Holly,” “Undone (The Sweater Song),” and “Say It Ain’t So” are all tracks that should be on every 90s alternative rock playlist. The deep cuts are just as memorable to me, with “My Name is Jonas,” “Surf Wax America,” and “Only in Dreams” getting just as much playtime from me. If I were to recommend one Weezer album to someone, it would be this. It captures everything that makes them great in just 10 tracks.
While The Blue Album might be the best “Weezer album,” I cannot deny that this is easily the best record the band ever made. It is less accessible, more gritty and distorted and goes deep into the dark themes that were only hinted at in their debut. This album was a failure when it was released and I am not going to act like I do not understand why. But for me, this is one of the greatest albums of all time and is one I cannot see myself ever growing tired of. This is a beautiful response from Rivers Cuomo to the feelings of loneliness that accompany fame. He does not hold back either, delving into his feeling on meaningless sex on the opener “Tired of Sex,” fantasizing over a Japanese fan who wrote him a letter in “Across the Sea” and falling in love with a lesbian on “Pink Triangle.” The singles “The Good Life” and “El Scorcho” are just as iconic to me as any of their hits and deserve much more love than they get. This is as good as this kind of music can get and I am so glad Cuomo was able to make such a brave and uncensored masterpiece.