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Weezer – Weezer (Teal Album)

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Melody Bot, Jan 29, 2019.

  1. Melody Bot

    Your friendly little forum bot. Staff Member

    This article has been imported from chorus.fm for discussion. All of the forum rules still apply.

    The internet giveth and the internet taketh away.

    Late last May, a 14-year-old Twitter user created an account dedicated to getting Weezer, now uniquely divisive in this stage of their career, to cover “Africa,” Toto’s 1982 hit and a resurging meme in the same lineage of Smash Mouth’s “All-Star” and Owl City’s “Fireflies.” Now, eight months later, the cultural tides have shifted. “Africa” has been viciously chewed up and spit out by the merciless internet machine, largely due to the outrageous popularity that accompanied Weezer’s studio cover. The song peaked number one on the Billboard Alternative Songs chart, the band’s first number one hit since 2007’s “Pork and Beans.” The band closed shows with it, made a bizarre, self-referential music video starring Weird Al for it, and even teased the song’s release with a superior cover of another Toto single, “Rosanna.”

    In less than a year, “Africa” became the sort of meme your family would recognize or bring up in casual conversation, essentially nullifying the status it once held and finalizing its new residence in the lexicon’s void.

    Just as it seemed “Africa” fatigue had run its course, Weezer shocked fans and skeptics alike with the surprise release of Weezer (Teal Album), a short collection of “largely faithful readings of pre-90s songs.” And the album is just that; harmless, serviceable, and at times, a good amount of fun. Touring with The Pixies, the band performed genuinely impressive renditions of The Turtles’ “Happy Together,” a-ha’s “Take On Me,” and Black Sabbath’s “Paranoid,” all of which appear here in loving form. As straightforward as these covers are – outside of the occasional power chord or re-imagined solo – the band generally sounds like they came to work and have fun here.

    But hell hath no wrath like the internet scorned. As unreasonably hostile as it trained us to be, folks who felt they seemingly couldn’t escape the “Africa” fandom lashed out at the band for cashing in on the single’s success. Thrillist called the album “irritatingly bad,” Pitchfork asked whether the band would “ever stop being disappointing,” and members of this very forum questioned what someone could get out of these covers. But it’s simply not that deep. Considering its streaming numbers and timeline (less than two months before the arrival of The Black Album), The Teal Album is, yes, undoubtedly a calculated move, but also little more than a chance for fans of this strange and unpredictable rock band to hear them take a swing at some beloved favorites.

    For better or for worse, this sounds like a Weezer album. We’ve heard the band navigate synths like the ones on Eurythmics’ “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” before, in the largely underappreciated Make Believe gem, “This is Such a Pity.” Where a “No Scrubs” cover from most other bands might seem dated and ill-advised at best, Weezer comes through with self-aware, TLC-approved rendition. But nothing compares to the band’s rousing take on Electric Light Orchestra’s “Mr. Blue Sky.” Simultaneously polished and distorted, the cover is such a success, it does begin to make you lament how The Teal Album could’ve sounded under different circumstances.

    The point is, Weezer is not immune to criticism – look no further than a truly unfortunately-timed cover of Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean” – but for delivering everything it promises, The Teal Album is an absurdly easy target. I don’t know if it was ever really cool to like Weezer, or if it ever will be, but in an age where anonymous hostility has been normalized, on a site where we gather to bond over one of the few things we have to look forward to come release day, it’s never a bad time for a reminder that it’s okay to let ourselves, and others, enjoy the little things.

     
    beachdude, RyanPm40 and AshlandATeam like this.
  2. Big thanks to @Jason Tate for publishing this because I feel like reading it killed him haha

    I'm a little rusty, but this felt like an easy one to get myself back into gear. Just feels good to be writing again.
     
  3. It's a really well written piece! You should totally write more. And write about bands I like :crylaugh:
     
  4. Thank you!! I'm working on another as we speak, so you can plan on it. Gonna have to start going by Hollywood rules, one for you and one for me hehe
     
    Jason Tate likes this.
  5. BradBradley

    Regular

    I absolutely love their cover of Mr. Blue Sky. I could see where a cover of No Scrubs would get received really well live.
     
  6. Dust Of Fallen Rome

    Regular

    I say this as a Weezer fan since the age of 12 and one who's forgiven and even actively enjoyed some of their dumbest and most banal music at various points; this is straight up awful.
     
    HueyLewis likes this.
  7. reachingfor

    Regular Supporter

    Great review!
     
    beachdude and Aaron Mook like this.
  8. TJ Wells

    Trusted Prestigious

    Yeah, well written, but this thing just sinks like a stone.
     
    Dust Of Fallen Rome likes this.
  9. CMilliken

    Trusted

    Great review and fun album.
     
    Aaron Mook likes this.
  10. Former Planets

    Aaaachem! Supporter

    I listened to it once and had no strong opinions other than "I don't think I'll listen to this again."
     
  11. Drew Beringer

    @drewberinger Moderator


    @Aaron Mook see the strategy is to sprinkle in writing about music you like (Better Oblivion Community Center) along with music you dislike (Bring Me The Horizon)

    I've perfected this over the nearly 15 years of writing on your sites (also holy shit)
     
  12. ClydeJohnson

    Newbie

    Thank you for writing this review. I could go on and on about my thoughts and feelings and background. However, I will just say this is refreshing in a world where it seems like being negative and “deep” is in vogue.
     
  13. Dust Of Fallen Rome

    Regular

    I mean, it's pretty much the realistic reaction to be "negative" at this point when we live in this political and social climate...?
     
  14. Dust Of Fallen Rome

    Regular

    I think this might be the first thing I've heard this year that actually contributed to making my depression worse...
     
  15. smowashere

    Trusted

    I enjoyed this album. It's just fun.
     
  16. Former Planets

    Aaaachem! Supporter

    lol wow. I thought that was a pretty innocuous comment...
     
    beachdude and slimfenix182 like this.
  17. Dust Of Fallen Rome

    Regular

    I just have a dark sense of humour about myself. Pay no mind.
     
    TJ Wells likes this.
  18. brothemighty

    Trusted

    Fireflies a meme on the level of All Star lol you guys wish
     
  19. HueyLewis

    Regular

    These tunes could have really used some personality. I kept waiting for some twists and turns but they played everything straight. So boring and a real missed opportunity.
     
  20. farva2

    Regular

    i heard a podcaster say listening to this is like seeing a good cover band playing at a bar or wedding and performing the songs in the way you want to hear them. That’s right on the money for me! Fun and harmless listening.
     
    beachdude and slimfenix182 like this.
  21. TJ Wells

    Trusted Prestigious

    But...you’re not at a bar. Why wouldn’t you just listen to the originals?
     
  22. Maybe I like the originals, and they're always there for me to listen to, but occasionally, I like to listen to a band I enjoy cover them? I still don't see how this is a tough concept to grasp
     
  23. slimfenix182

    FUCKIN SAVAGES IN THAT FUCKIN BOX Supporter

    Huey Lewis you're just mad cause you wanted Weezer to cover your song instead of NFG
     
    HueyLewis and beachdude like this.
  24. beachdude

    I'm not brave Prestigious

    “You like Huey Lewis and the News?”
     
  25. theredline

    Regular Supporter

    Amen.