Behind the catchy ruefulness of “Buddy Holly,” and the irony-rich wit of “Undone (The Sweater Song),” it appeared Weezer was going to become a mainstay in pop music. Rivers Cuomo”s infectious ear for melody and catchy love songs Weezer would surely be a staple of the post-grunge rock movement. They would tour and head back into the studio putting out a new album every year and a half. That is the way pop music works, right?
Following the commercial bust of Pinkerton, a concept album mirroring Giaccomo Puccini”s Madame Butterfly, in which Cuomo transformed the morally bankrupt Captain Pinkerton into a jaded rockstar who sleeps with different women from town to town Weezer completely vanished from the limelight. One magazine falsely reported that Cuomo had gone insane, burned all the Pinkerton master tapes and could be found holed up in a studio bouncing a rubber ball off the walls.
Instead, Weezer did indeed part ways after their supporting tour for Pinkerton. Drummer Pat Wilson took his side project the Special Goodness, on the road, Brian Bell set out to make a name for the Space Twins, and Matt Sharp ultimately left the band in favor of his side project the Rentals who had a minor radio hit with “Friends of P” on their debut album Return of the Rentals.
Cuomo and Co. found a new bassist in former Juliana Hatfield bassist Mikey Welsh, and set out to record a new record in 1998. A few weeks into the sessions Pat Wilson walked out due to the lack of the rehearsals.
Spring of 2000 brought Cuomo”s recall to the estranged member of the pop-quartet saying he had material he was ready to present to the band, and start Weezer back up as a full-time endeavor again. The band regrouped, rehearsed and set out on a few small club dates.
In the summer of 2000 Weezer played a few early club dates in California, then were asked to join the Warped Tour for a leg, and when the success of both outings grew Weezer launched into a nationwide club tour. The summer nationwide canvassing met Weezer head on and they proceeded to sell out everywhere they played, tickets for Chicago and New York lasted just minutes on internet pre-sales.
Fresh off of their summer tour Weezer headed into the studio to record their follow-up to Pinkerton. They tabbed Ric Ocasek (Cars” frontman, and producer of Weezer”s eponymous debut) for production duties. Entering the studio in the wake of Christmas Weezer wrapped mastering the day before their Yahoo sponsored spring tour kicked off last month.
When the new album was played at Interscope offices three weeks ago it was met with a completely different response than Weezer had expected. Just a few days into recording the new record, Interscope executives stopped by the studio to hear the new material, and proceeded to voice their discontent with Weezer”s new material. However, when they were played the completed version of the record they recanted their previous statements, “loving” the new material. However, Interscope promptly and quizzically pulled the original release date of April 17th 2001, leaving the release date in a musical purgatory where the band has hung for the last four years.
Corporate giant Yahoo offered to sponsor a spring tour before Weezer had even entered the studio to record their third record. This unity between Weezer and corporate American icon Yahoo upset many of their fans fans that take pride in the obscurity that Weezer”s absence has garnered.
Weezer”s time away resulted in steady sales for Pinkerton, and recently the album was certified platinum, proving abscence makes the heart grow fonder.
Weezer storms into Detroit for the second time in nine months this time at the State Theatre on Thursday accompanied by special guests and unsigned California quintet Ozma, and torch toting indie-rockers The Get Up Kids. Both bands were chosen via an online fan poll thru Weezer”s official website.