Review Summary: A meme in labor
Have I listened to the entirety of The Teal Album
？ Nah. But that doesn’t make me unqualified to spend a little time cobbling together a few short paragraphs on the first Weezer self-titled album that really just signifies itself. Try as it will to convince you that you’re listening to a band interested in taking some sort of exterior inventory, even if just for laughs, The Teal Album
’s actual success is in ratifying the band’s newest era of navel-gazing, an era best defined by Rivers Cuomo’s humble contentedness with the fact that the band exists. His view of the band is a cheap one, even by the fringiest standards of relevance; but if he could be pumped about a Weezer-themed SNL skit that he hadn’t seen, surely his fans should be just as obliged in their willingness to ascribe value to his output.
Let’s consider their covers album by way of their album covers, specifically those of their self-titled releases. There’s something about this band’s smug self-reflexivity that has aged poorly or at least has confused its charming effect with its deliberately effortless design. In the 2019 Weezer-verse we have the band trying to pose for a picture they want to look like a candid of themselves trying to pose very consciously as Weezer. The goofy minimalism of The Blue Album
's cover, on the other hand, endeared audiences to a gang of clean-cut rascals who in blurring the line between what it means to bank on or to buck a counterculture suggested a kind of “who, me？" attitude that we’ve read into them since. Each new self-titled reintroduces their contract with their own self-renewing mythology. With each color-coded LP, we feel like we learn something essential, somehow, something that seems new about a band that exists on preexisting fictions. But The Teal Album
is the first Weezer album that feels purely autoerotic. It’s out there, and you can listen to it. Whatever you think about these ten covers, it’s almost certain you’ll be thinking more about the idea behind them than about the things themselves.