#RealLife is a monthly feature where Consequence of Sound staffers join forces with a diverse cadre of writers to share personal stories inspired by one legendary album. This month we’re tackling Weezer’s self-titled debut, sharing stories for every song on the proper album, as well as three of its well-known B-sides. Some of the stories may be inexorably linked to the album itself, others may just share its themes, tone, and atmosphere. Regardless, they’re all real.
I’m guilty of trashing Weezer. They’re also one of my favorite bands. Aside from Aerosmith and Nirvana, they were probably my first favorite band. I’m still guilty of trashing them, though, of drawing a jagged, black line between Pinkerton and everything that came after. And I know that’s unfair, but it’s hard not to feel betrayed by a group of guys who, with the release of “The Green Album”, abandoned me and my 12-sided die in the garage to go frolic with tigers on some island in the sun. “It’s like I don’t even know you anymore,” I sneered at my stereo.
And that’s unfair. And reductive. I’m aware of this. But I’m sorta weird about Weezer. After I saw them play the entirety of their self-titled debut LP–affectionately known as “The Blue Album”–back in 2011, I got stoned and babbled about how I’d “closed a chapter” with them. I know, but as a kid it wasn’t the actual songs that resonated so much as how weird they all were. And how weird they looked on the cover. And how weird everything about that record was. And how it made me feel like it was okay to be weird.
And I remember lying in sleeping bags at Jeremiah’s house, my friends and I softly singing “In the Garage” as we drifted off to sleep, smiling at Kitty Pryde and Ace Frehley, content in the fact that we weren’t the only ones playing stupid songs and writing stupid words.
It’s hard to believe “The Blue Album” turned 20 this week. It’s maybe harder to believe that it still sounds as good now as it did then. And isn’t that a relief? Because unlike the people in your life who drift into another guise you can’t comprehend, with music there’s always this remnant to return to that remains unchanged.