by Kenneth Edison, Editor-in-Chief
Follow him at @krazo1
Leave it to Weezer, one of the most woefully inconsistent bands in the business, to follow up one of their best albums with one of their worst.
Weezer’s entire discography has been hit or miss since they debuted their preppy yet endearing sound in 1994 with the “Blue Album.” They followed that up with their best album to date, “Pinkerton,” but in the nearly 20 years following that they dropped albums that sacrificed the band’s initial charm for poorly performed, wannabe radio hits.
However, Weezer bounced back in a big way in 2014 and again in 2016 with their albums “Everything Will Be Alright in the End” and “The White Album,” respectively. These records returned to the band’s original appeal, with frontman, Rivers Cuomo, writing witty and loveable tracks that were reminiscent of the band’s initial brushes with greatness.
Despite the recent rebound, the band’s latest project “Pacific Daydream” disappointingly throws all of that out the window once more. Weezer seems to have gotten back in the business of radio play over all else, as they have released a collection of 10 awkward tracks that are just begging to be adopted as a catchy summer anthem.
The first single from this album to be released, “Feels like Summer,” really set the tone for the entire project with its dreadfully out of place EDM inspired synth beat that does not mesh with Weezer’s sound at all. Songs like this are dominant on the album, riddled with typical 2010s pop clichés like vocal “wo-o-ahs” in place to cover up the abundant lack of clever songwriting throughout.
Other tracks like “QB Blitz” showcase an unusual case of truly poor writing on the part of Cuomo with cringey lyrics about not having friends to do algebra homework with. Keep in mind, this is a 47 year old man writing these lyrics.
Songs like these showcase one of Weezer’s most consistent problems. Despite being in the industry for 20 plus years, they refuse to mature. As popular YouTube music critic Anthony Fantano put it, “20 years as a band and Weezer is still singing about that feel when no gf.”
Tracks like “Mexican Fender” guiltiest of this problem as the band tries to put out relatable tales of teenage romance. With lyrics about going to a guitar shop and hanging out with a girl at her boyfriend’s house, one has to wonder how distant of a memory Rivers is calling on here, and how sincere can he possibly be about the subject matter he writes his songs about.
In the year 2017, the best the band can hope for is to come off as a bunch of dads reminiscing about the good old days. But when they release albums like “Pacific Daydream” they come across more like a bunch of old dudes creepily trying to hang out with their kids’ high school friends.