Review Summary: Weezer return to form by doing what they've always done.
Look, folks. I think it's high time we – as in you, me, and just about everyone except for the nice people at your local payola “alternative” rock radio station who continued, and rightfully so, to push Weezer's singles long after the point where the entire internet music community turned on Rivers and company in a tsunami of post-Pinkerton
mudslinging – collectively apologized to Weezer. I get it. This is what happens when we allow ourselves to get lost in nostalgia. Yes, Weezer's Blue Album
so wonderfully encapsulate that golden age of teenage awkwardness that we all must go through to become semi-functional adults, but let's not forget that what made those records so endearing to so many is that Rivers stumbled through their themes just like the rest of us. It's not like he was some paragon of poetic contextualization and prose on the underlying angst of a kid who couldn't get laid. In fact, he was the embodiment of every single reason that a goofy kid with thick glasses and an unhealthy infatuation with KISS would find himself awash in sexual frustration. If anything, Weezer's latter day output cements this as fact. The only thing that has changed over time is that his success has found him in new situations to manifest his awkward teenage poetry. His notable clumsiness over the last decade, especially on Raditude
and The Red Album
, wasn't some pop-branding marketing shtick. It was the exact same ham-fisted lyricism that brought us “Falling For You”, but now coming from a middle aged man who just wanted to indulge in the available excesses of his fame.
Our collective sense that Weezer has somehow wronged us, by doing what they have more or less always done, is the driving force behind Everything Will Be Alright In The End
. Even its opening audio clip of a child waking up from a nightmare only exists to act like a “lol jk” text to their fans after the last decade of their career, and while there are certainly moments on Everything Will Be Alright In The End
that indeed make some call it a comeback, it doesn't change the fact there are songs on even Weezer's most loathed records that live up to the same mark that they've approached here; “The Greatest Man That Ever Lived (Variations on a Shaker Hymn)”, “Put Me Back Together”, “Unspoken”, and even “Pork and Beans” which tackles many of the same themes of growing older and finding yourself that Rivers uses here to great success on “Eulogy for a Rock Band”. Still, what makes Everything Will Be Alright In The End
work as a “return to form” kind of record, is it is the first time since “Hash Pipe” ruled the radio airwaves where the band actually rocks. It's a whimsical soundscape of 90's fuzz and the cheesy late 70's arena rock guitar harmonies that made Weezer both so cool and horribly uncool at the start of their career. All one has to do is look at the writing credits to see how the guitars are undeniably what the band thought separates the public's opinion on what is good Weezer and what is bad Weezer. “Foolish Father” and “I've Had It Up to Here” carry co-credits by Patrick Stickles of Titus Andronicus and Justin Hawkins of The Darkness respectively, and it is their indulgent attitude towards big guitars that make those songs stand out. Even the final trio of songs channel prog-pop group Fang Island in their completely ridiculous construction of solos on top of solos, but in that hokey self-gratification lies something that indeed makes everything alright: it's really fu
cking fun. And to be fair, that's all that matters. Lets face it. Rivers' lyrics are just as bad as they've always been, the band's sense of pop-song structure is still the backbone of every track, but that doesn't matter when everyone is having fun.