The Joup Friday/Saturday Album (by way of an unrequested Joup Confession) weezer: ‘Everything Will Be Alright In The End


“What’s with these homies jacking my appellation?
Why do they got it on their front?”

Those despicable “Geek” T-Shirts…  as if ‘jocks’ hadn’t done enough to nerds throughout the ages, they have to re-appropriate their insult and adorn themselves with it, as well as other accoutrements like those clear lensed, thick rimmed glasses. I own a weezer T-shirt. Ain’t no one giving me kudos – ironic or otherwise – for wearing that testimony to social shortcomings.

As far as I can remember, despite being ‘geeks’ that achieved success and popularity on the coat tails of early 90s alternative rock, these ‘goddamn shorthairs’ were never cool despite the unprecedented melodic explosion of the exuberantly self deprecating, X-Men, KISS, and D&D-referencing Blue Album (which it could be argued was the catalyst for the aforementioned popularisation of ‘geek culture’). It was this album that a friend picked up and quickly dumped on me for an extended stretch. Two years after it’s release and it’s summary drubbing at the hands of critics, I sought out follow-up Pinkerton on the same day I bought Mercury Rev’s ethereal Deserter’s Songs, playing them back to back in constant rotation as my alternative soundtrack of choice for marathon jags of Donkey Kong Country III on SNES where I’d retreated after some failed inaugural steps toward consorting with the opposite sex. While the latter album best symbolised where my increasingly experimental tastes were headed, the self-loathing, involuntarily awkward and naively misogynistic Pinkerton resonated with me on a more meaningful level, embedding itself in my heart and fostering an devotion I would find it hard to shake to the present day.

And I’ve tried, God knows, I’ve tried, but every few years just when I think I’m out for good they ‘Michael Corleone’ me back-in with another Godfather III of an album.

Incidentally, I really like Godfather III.

After the agonising wait for a follow up curtailed with the heartless decoupage of ‘The Green Album’ I, like many of my time, wrote them off. It wasn’t only about catchy hooks, there was something blissfully innocent about the purity of the song melodies, there were deeply personal worlds just beneath the surface of the seemingly simple lyrics and an unabashed honesty and levity that was a delight in the aftermath of ‘Grunge’ and the burgeoning posturing of Britpop. Cuomo cut his teeth on Maiden, Slayer and Malmsteen before having his underlying early-Beatles and Beach Boys leanings streamlined into the zeitgeist by his discovery of Nirvana, Pixies, Sonic Youth and Sebadoh, bringing his musical education practically perfectly aligned with mine, surely it would be only a matter of time before he rebuilt his shattered confidence and returned to former glories? After the critical mauling of Pinkerton, Cuomo reportedly painted his apartment black and set about methodically trying to discover a ‘formula’ for the perfect Pop Rock song, filling notebooks-worth of data, with the ensuing results sounding predictably synthesised.

Revisiting those first two albums though has always sparked in me an adoration infused with a desperate hope that such undeniable talent can’t have been fully snuffed out, and as a result I find my interest piqued upon hearing news of any upcoming release. For ten years I’ve experienced exhilarating anticipations, that always culminated in crushing disappointment. Then I’d be thrown some bone hinting that I had them all wrong – one minute I’d see them collaborating with Kenny G, Dr Luke, and Lil Wayne, then the next taking to the high seas on a luxury ocean liner with the likes of Gene Ween, Dinosaur Jr, Holy Fuck and Lou Barlow, or would witness some jaw dropping display that had me convinced that perhaps the previous execrable LP was in fact Cuomo perpetrating some sort of Kaufmanesque mass trolling…

A few months ago I cautiously haunted message boards, intrigued by the promise of the title, but prepared for another inevitable let down…but it didn’t come, not this time – Cuomo seems to have flicked the switch I always hoped he still had in him.

In what is perhaps a nod to his much-discussed abandoned sophomore Space Opera ‘Songs From The Black Hole’, the record is thematically split into three sections making up a larger concept; the paternal-themed ‘Patriarchia’ , ‘The Panopticon Artist’ a smattering of self-referential songs about Cuomo’s fractious relationship with this audience, and Cuomo’s bread-and-butter boy/girl ditties under the ‘Belladonna’ umbrella, which here sound as though there might, for the first time since 2001, actually be some truth to them (meaning any hysterical comparisons to Pinkerton may be well-founded considering Cuomo doesn’t sound like he’s referring to his wife in any of them).

‘Everything Will Be Alright In The End’ winds up with the simultaneously emotional and ridiculous trio of operatic Metal-inflected jams pompously entitled ‘I. The Wasteland’ ‘II. Anonymous’ and (best titled of all) ‘III. Return to Ithaka’

Tradition dictates in this column that we nod to an album that has perhaps passed us by, but considering this one is 18 years late  I’d argue it counts. For those of you who at any time in their life had a fealty to the weez, this is a self-assured return to form set afloat on every scrap salvageable from the intervening years and in my opinion nothing short of the miracle some of us True Believers have been waiting for.

Tommy, I choo-choo choose you.

Chester Whelks

Chester Whelks

Chester Whelks is a peripheral figure on the fringes of existence. Predominantly bothering the local music scene of his native Manchester, England, he has a very finely attuned Justice-button, and knows how to call a spade a ‘Multi-Purpose Murder/Concealment Device’.

One Response to The Joup Friday/Saturday Album (by way of an unrequested Joup Confession) weezer: ‘Everything Will Be Alright In The End
  1. Shawn C. Baker Reply

    Great write-up. I have a strange relationship with this band – really a non-relationship, despite the fact that I dig some of their stuff but always remain somewhat suspicious, though I’m not sure why or of what. One thing is for sure, they have written some killer singles in their day. I’m a little bummed they appropriated the painting they did for a cover – I LOVE this monsters-added-to-thrift-store-paintings thing from recent years but this one has made the internet rounds enough to not need to be tied to anyone’s music, however good deal for the artist, who probably received a nice pay day for it.
    Here’s me giving some Weezer another chance. Thank you Chester!

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