"Oo-ee-oo I look just like Buddy Holly,
Oh-oh, and you're Mary Tyler Moore,
I don't care what they say about us anyway,
I don't care bout that."
Oh-oh, and you're Mary Tyler Moore,
I don't care what they say about us anyway,
I don't care bout that."
— "Buddy Holly"
Influences:Weezer is an Alternative Rock/Power Pop/Emo band formed in Los Angeles in 1992, with its current lineup consisting of Rivers Cuomo (lead vocals, guitar), Brian Bell (rhythm guitar, backing vocals), Scott Shriner (bass), and Patrick Wilson (drums, occasional guitar). Its past members were Jason Cropper (guitar, 1992-1994), Matt Sharp (bass, backing vocals, 1992-1998) and Mikey Welsh (bass, backing vocals, 1998-2001). Sharp is as well or better known as the frontman of his own band, the Rentals.Discography:
- The Blue Album (1994)
- Pinkerton (1996)
- Weezer (The Green Album) (2001)
- Maladroit (2002)
- Make Believe (2005)
- Weezer (The Red Album) (2008)
- Raditude (2009)
- Hurley (2010)
- Death to False Metal (2010)**
- Everything Will be Alright in the End (2014)
- Weezer (The White Album) (2016)
- Pacific Daydream (2017)
"Your trope is a heart breaker..."
- Adorkable: Rivers Cuomo can be this in some of his more naive lyrical moments. Pinkerton deconstructs this trope, where the protagonists of the songs go past adorkable and right into creepy.
- Album Title Drop: Everything Will Be Alright In The End was their first album to have one, and it actually happens twice: Once it's part of a Spoken Word in Music intro to "Ain't Got Nobody", the second time it's actually sung in "Foolish Father".
- Alcoholic Parent: "Say It Ain't So."
- Audience Participation Song: "El Scorcho" ("why you wanna go and do me like that/come down to the street and DANCE with me!") "The Greatest Man that Ever Lived" (during the sections directly after each tempo change).
- The 'hip hip' part of "Island in the Sun."
- "I've HAD it!" from "The Good Life."
- The "oh OH!" chorus of "Perfect Situation."
- Badass Boast: "The Greatest Man that Ever Lived"
- A lot of The Red Album can be described this way. See "Troublemaker," "Everybody Get Dangerous," and "Cold Dark World."
- Buffy Speak: One of Rivers' trademarks is occasionally breaking into this during his lyrics. It's especially evident on their first two albums - the later ones somewhat hid that aspect beneath Word Salad Lyrics.
- Cloudcuckoolander: Rivers, at least in his online series Let's Write a Sawng.
- Clothing Damage: "If you want to destroy my sweater... (whoa whoa whoa!)"
- Concept Album: Pinkerton drew much of its influence from Puccini's opera, Madame Butterfly; and of course, there's the scrapped Songs From the Black Hole.
- Everything Will Be Alright In The End is at least a loose one: Rivers Cuomo has stated in an interview that all of the songs on the album are parts of three song cycles with common lyrical themes: Belladonna (songs about girls), The Panopticon Artist (songs about the band's relationship with fans and the music industry), and Patriarchia (songs about fatherhood, heavily informed by his reconnection with his own father).
- Credits Gag: Pinkerton includes the credit "Karl Koch - Karl Koch" (a long-time friend of the band who runs their website, among other things). The EPs The Lion And The Witch and Winter Weezerland both credit Rupert Peasley as a producer: "Rupert Peasley" was the Fan Nickname for the man depicted on the cover of Maladroit.
- A Day in the Limelight: The Red Album lets Brian, Scott, and Pat shine.
- Brian sings "Thought I Knew", the bonus track "It's Easy", and shares lead vocals on "Dreamin'" and "Everybody Gets Dangerous".
- Scott sings "Cold Dark World", the bonus track "King" and shares lead on their cover of The Band's "The Weight".
- Pat sings "Automatic" and the cover of Talk Talk's "Life's What You Make It".
- Though, Pat did co-write a couple of Blue Album songs, namely "My Name Is Jonas" (co-written with Jason Cropper, too) "The World Has Turned And Left Me Here" and "Surf Wax America". He also co-wrote Blue outtake "Lullabye for Wayne".
- Pat also wrote the Raditude track "In The Mall," though Rivers sings it.
- Darker and Edgier: Pinkerton was much darker thematically and rougher musically than its predecessor: the self-titled debut. The initial backlash was so great that the following Green Album marked a decided turn towards Lighter and Softer the band hasn't really returned from.
- Dork in a Sweater: "Come Undone" aka "The Sweater Song".
- Drugs Are Bad: "We Are All on Drugs".
- "Do You Wanna Get High?" also seems to imply this.
- Easter Egg: The Green Album booklet folds out to a poster of the band onstage - hidden among the crowd are the silhouettes of Mike Nelson, Tom Servo, and Crow T. Robot. The same album also has the word "No" hidden under the tray, which has caused speculation among fans about what it's supposed to mean - theories range from a reply to the text hidden under OK Computer's tray (which ends with the question "would you like to come home with me") to a message to fans that the album would not be another Pinkerton. The band have not confirmed any of these theories, and the only comment came from webmaster Karl Koch, who simply said: "No means no".
- Similar to the "No" example, but more ambitious, Pinkerton has a map under its CD tray with "Isol Della Farfalla e Penisola Di Cane." which is Italian for: "Island of the Butterfly and Peninsula of Dog.", a ship named the U.S.S. Pinkerton, Mykel and Carli Island, a reference to the founders of Weezer's fan club, more Shout Outs to Madame Butterfly and the names of musicians who influenced the band during recording. (Brian Wilson, Yngwie Malmsteen, etc.)
- Epic Rocking: "Only in Dreams".
- Earn Your Happy Ending: Everything Will Be Alright in the End was met with near-unanimous love from the fanbase- their first album in over fifteen years to not cause some kind of Broken Base.
- Flanderization: The chief criticism directed at Weezer's albums after Pinkerton (especially Green, Maladroit and Make Believe) is that Rivers Cuomo "dumbed down" his songwriting to a Strictly Formula process after the more ambitious Pinkerton completely tanked. This three-part essay elaborates on that theory.
- Guest-Star Party Member: The band's archivist Karl Koch has several appearances on albums, such as being responsible for the piano destruction at the end of "Undone - The Sweater Song" and playing percussion on "Butterfly". According to Koch, the latter's because "Butterfly" was the last song recorded in a crunch at around 3 AM, when the only people left in the studio were Rivers, him, and engineer Dave Fridmann.
- I Am the Band: Rivers has always had a dictatorial streak as a frontman (Matt Sharp left the band due to this), but it reached an apex around 2001-2002 when he took complete control of the band. Rivers himself admitted he turned into a Small Name, Big Ego around this point thanks to his obsession with "conquering the world" with his music. It seems he's let up a bit lately, considering the other members' contributions to The Red Album and the co-writes on Raditude and Hurley.
- Long-Runner Line-up: The band hasn't changed since 2001 (though only Rivers and Patrick Wilson are founding members)
- Lyrical Dissonance: "Surf Wax America" is an upbeat, high tempo song about a guy who avoids obligations so that he can surf all day... only to be pulled in by undertow and killed.
- "Cold Dark World" has lyrics promising to be there for a love interest no matter what, set to slow, ominous minor key music. The music and lyrics were written separately by different members of the band, and they just found the juxtaposition interesting.
- Miniscule Rocking: "My Evaline", a 44 second barbershop cover released as a B-Side.
- Mondegreen: One of the more widespread ones came from "Hash Pipe"'s chorus, where the lines "I've got my eyes wide" and "You got your Big G's" were misheard as "I've got my ass wipe" and "You got your big cheese".
- Scott Shriner apparently had one for "Surf Wax America" when he was still a new addition to the band: The version from the live EP The Lion And The Witch has him singing the bridge backing vocals as "We will write a postcard to our friends and family and freebase" (instead of "...in free verse"), and ends with Rivers correcting him.
- "In the Garage" has "I've got Peter Criss" misheard as "I've got me a dress".
- Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Generally in the 4 to 5 range. Pinkerton, however, is mostly a solid 6 (with "Butterfly" being a 1). "Get Me Some", "Everyone" and several songs from Maladroit also reach a 6. Pacific Daydream is their softest album, with most songs from it sitting at a 3.
- Notable Music Videos: Every single one, except the ones associated with the Pinkerton album (see Crowning Moment Of Awesome on the YMMV page).
- One-Man Song: Buddy Holly.
- Parental Abandonment: "Say It Ain't So" is about this.
- Plagiarism: Rivers admitted that the verse melody of "Undone - The Sweater Song" accidentally ripped off Metallica's "Welcome Home (Sanitarium)".
- Preacher's Kid: The unreleased "Preacher's Son"
- Precision F-Strike: "Can't Stop Partying", said by Lil Wayne. Rivers himself uses "goddamn" in "Undone - The Sweater Song" (Goddamn/I am), "Across the Sea" (Goddamn, this business is really lame), "El Scorcho" (Goddamn you half-Japanese girls/Do it to me every time) and "Falling for You" (Holy sweet goddamn, you left your cello in the basement), the latter also including "hell". The effect is similar since Rivers himself pointed out that he usually avoids swearing:Weezer came up at a time when Jane's Addiction released Nothing's Shocking — everyone was trying to be controversial. We looked back to rock & roll's pre-drug days — to the clean images of the The Beach Boys — that felt, ironically, rebellious.
- "My Brain Is Working Overtime", which was only performed live during one tour, included the lyric "tell the world to fuck itself" - it's only commercial release was a Rivers Cuomo solo demo that omitted the verse with that lyric entirely. In 2016, the non-album single "I Love The USA" became the first officially released Weezer song where Rivers himself delivered an f-bomb: "I love the USA/ Fuck yeah, this place is great". Even then, they also released a censored version replacing "fuck yeah" with "eff yeah".
- Prior to "I Love the USA" Rivers did say "fag" in the song "Dope Nose" (Fag of the year/Who could beat up your man).
- Pretty Fly (For a White Guy): Rivers Cuomo, at least occasionally. Weirdly, he seems to have been incredibly conscious of this trope and refused to make any of Weezer's songs 'funky' because he thought he'd be accused of it, white people attempting to be "funky" with bad results being a Running Gag between him and Matt Sharp. He apparently didn't realize that his lyrics sometimes went into this territory, but he did relent on three occasions: for the song "Hot Tub", the Reggae riff that underpins the verses of "Say It Ain't So", and covering Ice Cube's "The Bomb" (a home demo that was released on the first Alone compilation).
- Race Fetish: Part of Pinkerton's famously uncomfortable honesty includes Cuomo admitting to having one of these for Asian women. He would later marry a woman of Japanese ethnicity.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: 'Back to the Shack' directly addresses the criticisms lobbed at the last several albums before it and assures the listeners who hate those albums to any extent that it's going to get better with their writing and production. It did.
- The same song also addressed fan criticism of then-recent concerts: From 2009-2012 they started bringing a second drummer, Josh Freese, on tour, so that on certain songs Patrick Wilson could play lead guitar or keys and Rivers could put his guitar down and roam the stage freely while singing. Fans seemed to prefer seeing the members stick to their usual instruments, hence the lyric "Maybe I should play lead guitar and Pat should play the drums".
- Rearrange the Song: "Weekend Woman" from Pacific Daydream is a drastically reworked version of "Burning Sun", a ''Green Album' outtake that leaked long beforehand.
- "Thought I Knew", Brian Bell's Step Up to the Microphone song on The Red Album, was originally a song by his side project The Relationship. The Weezer version changed it from a minor key to a major one because the band felt it fit the feel of the album better that way.
- Rockers Smash Guitars: The inner booklet of The Blue Album shows a photo of the band's garage, and the headstock of a guitar Rivers had previously smashed to pieces.
- Scatting: The earliest demo of "Burndt Jamb", where the vocals consisted entirely of combinations of "do" and "ah". The Maladroit version added proper lyrics, but there was still some scatting in the backing vocals ("doot do do do")
- Self-Backing Vocalist: Rivers did this on Green, in contrast to the Vocal Tag Team method the band used in The '90s.
- Self-Titled Album: Four of them! They are usually told apart by the main color of their covers (1994: "Blue Album", 2001: "Green Album", 2008: "Red Album", and 2016: "White Album").
- Shout-Out: "In the Garage" is basically an extended, geeky shout-out to all the things Rivers loves (Kiss, Dungeons & Dragons, X-Men...).
Quiet Riot got me started with the banging of my headEddie Rabbitt sang about how much he loved a rainy night
- And of course Hurley for Lost, the cover of the album being a picture of actor Jorge Garcia.
- "Devotion" has the line "I'm no six foot hot look all American man", a shout out to the somewhat obscure Kiss song "All American Man" (in which Paul Stanley says he is "a six foot hot look all American man").
- "El Scorcho" is named after Del Scorcho brand sauce, quotes a line from "Don't Believe the Hype", name-drops professional wrestlers Johnny Grunge and New Jack and references Cio-Cio San, the protagonist of Madame Butterfly from whence the album Pinkerton derives its concept. There is also a line referencing Green Day. Apparently the girl that this song was written about had never heard of them. How cool is that?
- Every YouTube video ever (of the late 2000's) in the "Pork and Beans" video.
- And "Heart Songs" is a long shout out to Rivers' musical influences, to the point where a single line will most likely namecheck at least 2 songs or musicians. For instance:
- Slayer is also mentioned at the beginning of "(If You're Wondering if I Want You To) I Want You To", albeit just as a shirt logo.
- The Blue Album B-side "Susanne" originally included a shout-out to Kurt Cobainnote , and his rival Axl Rose. The lyrics were revised after his suicide to replace Cobain's name with Rose's bandmates Izzy and Slash, but whenever the band plays "Susanne" live they use the original lyric instead.
- The photo of the band's garage in the booklet of The Blue Album shows a poster of British Steel on the wall.
- A line from Summer Elaine and Drunk Dori ("She touched my ankle, Paranoid Android!") references Radiohead.
- Step Up to the Microphone: Every member gets a shot at singing lead on The Red Album.
- Studio Chatter: If you listen to the multitracks for "El Scorcho," you can hear the rest of the band cracking up in the background. Also, the famous "el scorcho... rrrrocknroll!" at the beginning of the song seems to have been part of a conversation the band was having about Taco Bell sauce that just got left in the mix.
- There is also the dialogue in-between verses of "Undone (The Sweater Song)".
- This was intentionally utilized on The White Album. As Rivers explained on the Song Exploder podcast, producer Jake Sinclair would have the band gather around a microphone to improvise harmonies and banter. This is most noticeable in "Summer Elaine and Drunk Dori" (Specifically Brian saying "you witch!" and someone imitating a piano after the line "Sweet piano melodies play").
- Surfer Dude: "Surf Wax America" is a sarcastic take on the subject.
- Take That!/Writer Revolt: "Pork and Beans" is one against record executives.
- As is The British Are Coming
- Take That, Audience!: "Space Rock" stemmed from some of the frustration Rivers Cuomo had while interacting with fans on message boards - Hence "You wanna cry when you're dealing with the kids / they know it all, and they're pinning you to the boards".
- I've Had it Up to Here could also be seen as this. "I tried to give my best to you, but you put up your ears. Now I just can't take no more, I've had it up to here." And, later. "If you think I need approval from a baseless drum, that's where you're wrong."
- Three Chords and the Truth: Especially in The Green Album and Maladroit, which clock at less than 30 minutes.
- Vocal Tag Team: During the Blue and Pinkerton era, it was Rivers on lead and Brian and Matt doing backing vocals (Matt's were usually falsetto), and some song parts spotlight them more than Rivers (the breakdowns of "Surf Wax America" and "Holiday").
- While occasionally utilized after Pinkerton, as of The White Album, it seems they've fully gone back to this approach (albeit with Scott on falsetto instead of Matt).
- A Wild Rapper Appears!:
- Lil Wayne's verse on "Can't Stop Partying"(and Chamillionaire's verse in the alternate version), Omitted in the Acoustic Version.
- Rivers himself does this at the start of "The Greatest Man That Ever Lived".
- Word Salad Lyrics: Weezer lyrics are generally pretty straightforward, but then there's "Dope Nose", which Rivers Cuomo admits has "no meaning whatsoever".
- Most of The Green Album and Maladroit qualify as this - they're occasionally criticised for stubbornly refusing to make any sense.
- Some of Maladroit's outtakes, which the band posted on their official site while still working on the album, got particularly strange lyrically - For instance, from "Big Chip" (also known as "Don't Pick On Me"): "'cause I don't believe in a burn like that \ I pick up my donuts for free".