Music Reviews

Weezer Van Weezer

(Atlantic / Crush) Rating - 7/10

Let’s be honest, most bands just don’t have it.  A few are lucky enough to capture fleeting greatness, only to lose the formula – usually forever. And then there’s Weezer. Now three decades deep into a career defined by an uncanny ability to veer between the extraordinary and the downright terrible – sometimes in the same song – Rivers Cuomo evidently knows what it is, but he’s consistently shown a preference for dancing to his own tune. That’s great for him, of course, but like many of you I’d tuned out and downgraded my expectations some time ago. Consequently, Van Weezer is a pleasant surprise. Non-ironic references to 70s and 80s hard rock abound, with the only borderline egregious moment being the wholesale lift of Randy Rhoads’s Crazy Train riff. The whole thing mostly works, though, thanks to the generous application of a Blue Album power-pop filter. I Need Some of That channels The Cars (like much of Weezer’s finest work) and is the clear standout here, but there’s plenty more to raise a smile.