Artist interviews, music reviews: Ink Blot Magazine






Weezer: Pinkteron

Weezer at a glance...

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
First Recordings: 1992

Rivers Cuomo - vocals, guitar
Brian Bell - vocals, guitar
Matt Sharp - vocals, bass
Patrick Wilson - drums

Bands in the Family :
The Rentals, The Spacetwins, Special Goodness, that dog., Nerfherder, Juliana Hatfield, Ash, has them all.

After about a year and a half of trying to crack the LA club scene, Weezer were signed to DCG Records. They headed to the well-known Electric Lady studios to record their 1994 eponymous debut, which the Cars' Rick Ocasek on production duties. In the midst of grunge, Weezer emerged with the same churning rhythm section and sludgy guitars, but with self-deprecating humor that impish geeks everywhere could appreciate. MTV loved them and they even picked up Grammy awards for their single, “Buddy Holly”. Two years later, they released their self-produced album, Pinkerton (the title inspired by Madame Butterfly), which was darker and far more wonderful than their debut. However, Weezer shied away from commercial success and members went to work on other projects and lead vocalist Cuomo returned to his studies at Harvard. Bassist Matt Sharp amicably left the band to focus more on The Rentals and was replaced with Mikey Welsh from Juliana Hatfield's band. Their long-awaited third album is due in the spring of 2001.


DCG, Released 1996

With their first album, Weezer showed they were living out the American dream — four boys move west to California in order to become rock stars and wind up becoming heroes. That first record is great. It sounds like a blast: “Rock out to Kiss! I'll race you on my surfboard!” In the classic rock 'n' roll tradition, this second album reflects the repercussions of fame. (C.F. Oasis, (What's the Story?) Morning Glory and Supergrass, In It for the Money). Despite its bleak undertones Pinkerton is still very much a Weezer album: strange, fast, and loud, with sadness disguised by stinging humor.

Loosely taking his cue from the lead male in Puccini's Madame Butterfly, lyricist Rivers Cuomo insists that he really has become too pathetic to be worthy of your love. “El Scorcho” and “Getchoo” are all classic sturdy Weezer, embedded with that “girls are nothing but trouble” theme. The biggest kick in the ass comes on “Pink Triangle,” as Cuomo discovers his girlfriend is a lesbian. The humor is not lost though. Wonders Rivers, “Everyone's a little queer/ Why can't she be a little straight?

When the jokes subside, Pinkerton sounds completely disgusted with the rock 'n' roll lifestyle. “Tired of Sex” is hot, angry guitars and throbbing drums accompanying Cuomo's tormented screams. Disrupting a refreshing moment of tenderness in “Across the Sea”, Cuomo furiously blames the music industry for his general despair. A blatant, if not confusing sign of consuming discontentment, “The Good Life” is a stripped, sneering rocker wherein Rivers proclaims that now he wants to emerge from his hermit shell and be wild again. But it's the closing track, “Butterfly” that truly unmasks Weezer. With only an acoustic guitar for protection, Rivers admits that he can be hurtful and selfish. His voice strains and cracks as he humbly pleads for forgiveness. It really makes you wonder why Weezer love pretending to be one-dimensional.

If you like Weezer, check out:
Weezer- Weezer
Pavement- Brighten the Corners
Blur- Blur
The Breeders- Last Splash
The Cars- The Cars
The Pixies- Doolittle
Elastica- Elastica Weezer

-- Lori Latimer

Ink Blot Home
about | archives | contact | links

join our free newsletter!