Recommend if you like: Vampire Weekend, Panic at the Disco, remembering the 90’s
Expectation: The 10th album from beloved 90’s rock band, Weezer. After releasing 2 critically & commercially successful albums at the start of their career, every album Weezer has released in the 2000’s has been met with a more mixed reaction, with the general consensus being that they all (barring possibly 2002’s Maladroit) have catered too much to a radio-friendly sound. While the radio friendly elements were still present on this album’s singles, they seemed to have finally made them work, giving me hope for this album.
- California Kids – Despite playing into the aesthetic that Blink-182 have been moving toward for several years, Weezer somehow pulls this track off. Its kind of dumb, but its fun and upbeat, making for a decent opener.
- Wind In Our Sail – Weezer seems to have listened to a Fun song and said “Lets do that”. It goes alright.
- Thank God For Girls – Weezer listened to Panic at the Disco, too. Better than their Fun song, and amusing lyrics.
- (Girl We Got A) Good Thing – Weezer listened to the Beach Boys. Its legitimately cute.
- Do You Wanna Get High? – Closer in sound to Weezer’s “classic” style, though still matching the upbeat, polished sound of the rest of the album.
- Summer Elain and Drunk Dori – The Weezer of the last decade makes an appearance. It isn’t awful, just very forgettable.
- LA Girlz – Another old-school inspired melody like Good Thing. Cuomo finally seems to have reconciled his “quirky nerd” persona with his desire to be a rock star, to some extent.
- Endless Bummer – First of all, this track title sums up Weezer in 2016 better than anything I could ever imagine myself. The dorky, “child at heart” image it conjures matches well with the feeling of the album. The song itself is nice, though forgettable.
Overall: While this album isn’t guaranteed to win back jaded Weezer fans from the 90’s, its a step in the right direction for the band finding an audience again. Some amount of the band’s endearing quirkiness comes back, and its enough to put the band’s efforts in a different light. Its obvious that the band has heard the changes in rock music in the two decades since their debut, and they almost seem to just want to join in on the fun. The album isn’t a true return to form, but it might still be a return for Weezer into rock fans’ good graces.