[Review] Weezer (2001)

28 minutes of pure power-pop joy that made the last five years melt away like ice cream in the sun.

Kronomyth 3.0: A Rivers runs through it.

Weezer called. Said they were sorry for the disappearing act but that they’re doing fine, just fine. I want to be angry with them, but I’m just happy to have them back. Funny thing is, they haven’t changed much after all this time. A thirty-minute disc after a five-year absence? Enigmatic. Disappointing too, when you consider some of it might have been jettisoned, so look at the lesser tracks as packing material for heavy hitters like Photograph and Hash Pipe.

When Weezer is “on,” as they are half of the time on The Green Album, they’re wonderful. Who else would think of a line like “Crab at the booty, t’aint gonna do no good?” What this album establishes is that the world needs Weezer. Yes, even just thirty minutes of Weezer, because they’re that sweet.

They’re not simple; that’s a deception. As Teenage Fanclub showed, it’s not enough to write a handful of good pop songs. What you don’t write—noisy solos, experimental interludes, trite ballads—is just as important. The pleasure to be had in hearing a Smile slide into Simple Pages without some heavy metal posturing in the middle is Weezer’s pleaser.

If you enjoyed their first album (and I’m pretty sure everybody on the planet did), this is a streamlined successor. It’s not as heavy, not as angry as The Blue Album. It’s not the revelation either. The joy of The Green Album is in having our prodigal son returned to us. Welcome back, Weezer.

Original elpee version

A1. Don’t Let Go
A2. Photograph
A3. Hash Pipe
A4. Island in the Sun
A5. Crab
B1. Knock-Down Drag-Out
B2. Smile
B3. Simple Pages
B4. Glorious Days
B5. O Girlfriend

All songs written by Rivers Cuomo.

UK CD bonus track
11. I Do

The Players

Brian Bell (guitar & vocals), Rivers Cuomo (vocals & guitar), Mikey Welsh (bass & vocals), Patrick Wilson (drums). Produced by Ric Ocasek; engineered by Ken Allardyce, additional engineering by Carlos “Loco” Bedoya; mixed by Tom Lord-Alge.

The Pictures

Art direction by Chris Bilheimer. Photography by Marina Chavez and Karl Koch.

The Plastic

Released on elpee, cassette and compact disc on May 15, 2001 in the US (Geffen, 3045-2), the UK (Geffen, 493 061-2) and Thailand (Geffen, 493 045-4). UK CD features one bonus track. Reached #7 on the US charts (RIAA-certified platinum record) and #31 on the UK charts.

  1. Re-released on 180g vinyl elpee in 2012 in the US (Mobile Fidelity).
  2. Re-released on super-high material compact disc on March 21, 2012 in Japan (Geffen, UICY-25182).
  3. Re-issued on elpee in 2016 in the US (Geffen, 80025154-01).

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