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Weezer’s Pinkerton, a heartfelt release

Brian Foy | Tuesday, October 7, 2003

Remember when Weezer came out with “Buddy Holly” and “Say It Ain’t So” and everybody bought the Blue Album? Then, they seemingly fell off the face of the Earth before they resurfaced with “Hash Pipe” and “Island in the Sun” from the Green Album?Well, Weezer didn’t fall off the face of the Earth, but instead recorded one of the best albums that almost nobody has heard. Weezer’s sophomore release Pinkerton is the most honest album of the last decade and maybe the greatest display of sincerity ever recorded on one album.When I heard Pinkerton, I was immediately taken back by “Tired of Sex.” The song is a slow-brewing, simple track about Rivers Cuomo’s desire to find a girl that he can love so that he can stop just having sex. When the song closes with the line “So why can’t I be making love come true?” I knew this was not the same Weezer I had heard before or have since. “The Good Life” is Weezer at their finest, with a catchy guitar riff and lyrics like “I should have no feeling, ‘cuz feeling is pain.” Rivers is pouring himself out on the album and is coming from some very deep places to do this. “Across the Sea” might be the strongest song on the album, as it mixes multiple layered instruments with heartfelt lyrics. “Why are you so far away from me? I need help and you’re way across the sea.” set the tone for the chorus and the song as a whole. My favorite song on the album is “El Scorcho” because of its increasing pace music and identifiable lyrics. Every time I hear “I’m a lot like you, so please Hello, I’m here, I’m waiting I think I’d be good for you and you’d be good for me” I am reminded that everyone goes through difficult things in life. The most humorous and comforting song on the album might be “Pink Triangle.” The chorus opens up with “I’m dumb, she’s a lesbian. I thought I had found the one.” Anyone who has been wrong about someone that they thought they knew can take solace in these lyrics. Rivers has obviously been through some troubling times, and from the lyrics it sounds like they are worse than any I might go through.Weezer’s Pinkerton was heartfelt and true before guys like John Mayer ruined the entire genre by taking it way too far. Rivers proves you can be emotional and sentimental without being overly sappy. Musically, the bass, drums and guitar all follow the same pattern, so we are not dealing with Mozart, but The Beatles’ music wasn’t the most complex, either. Pinkerton is an outstanding album because of its lyrical content, not its musical complexity. Pinkerton proved that Weezer is not a typical band and that they have musical substance. They were willing to push the envelope and take things in a different direction. The problem is that the general public has been slow to receive this album, but it is gaining popularity and developing a cult status. Weezer’s Pinkerton is not only the best album you’ve never heard, but it’s also my favorite album.

Contact Brian Foy at bfoy@nd.edu