Weezer’s 10 Best Deep Cuts

on October 24, 2017, 12:00pm
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Feature photo by Philip Cosores

Deep Cuts collects all the forgotten and often hidden gems in a band’s catalogue. This time around, Michael Roffman and Justin Gerber take a look through Weezer’s extensive catalogue and come back with plenty of surf wax.

A long time ago, in a galaxy that’s now far, far away, Weezer had a small catalogue. Back in the early aughts, you could spend a breezy afternoon with their body of work and walk away with enough time to catch a matinee. Things have changed, though, and now they’re sitting atop 11 studio albums — four of which have used their iconic color scheme, namely blue, green, red, and white — and six EPs. It’s not surprising seeing how Rivers Cuomo has delivered a new album from the California beach boys almost every year. What’s surprising is how so much greatness has been lost in the ether, and that’s why we felt it was imperative to head into the garage and find our favorite heart songs.

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10. “Hold Me”

Make Believe (2005)

Make Believe still gets a lot of grief, but we’d argue there’s lots to love. Sure, “Beverly Hills” and “We Are All on Drugs” are kind of miserable, but songs like “Perfect Situation” and this here ditty toss Rivers Cuomo in a Delorean and plop him right in the middle of the Enchantment Under the Sea dance. Cuomo has always sounded best being the coolest kid in the ’50s, and “Hold Me” is that image to a tee. That chorus! Chills! –Michael Roffman

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09. “Miss Sweeney”

Weezer (2008) Bonus Track

There’s an alternate reality in which the Red Album bonus tracks replace the non-Cuomo tracks, making it one of the band’s finer efforts. Oh, well. At least we got the bonus tracks. “Miss Sweeney” cribs from “Susanne” for its chorus, but it’s the strange rapid staccato (it makes sense, I swear) of the verses that make this a breath of fresh air in the all-too-obvious-pop era that’s marred much of the band’s recent oeuvre.–Justin Gerber

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08. “You Gave Your Love to Me Softly”

Angus Soundtrack (1995)

If you’ve never seen Angus, try to find it on cable sometime. It’s a nice little movie about a total no-name wandering around unhappily because he’s too overweight to win over the most popular girl in school. At the time, this then-portly writer imagined those Hollywood hacks finally made a movie for him. Anyways, in addition to a sizzling Green Day B-side (“J.A.R.”), the soundtrack also featured this slice of alt rock heaven from Weezer with a chorus that sounds a wee bit like “Surf Wax America” — but who cares. Fun fact: Cuomo initially gave them a track called “Wanda”, but it was turned down for being too literal of an interpretation of the movie. Oh well. –Michael Roffman

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07. “Space Rock”/”Slave”

Maladroit (2002)

Technically two tracks, but in my heart they are one. Unheralded set found in the back half of Maladroit, “Space Rock” is musically the heavier of the two with its false-note doo-wop interludes. “Slave” is a bit more picked up and features one of the band’s simpler choruses (“Who put on your heart?”), but it fits the deliberately exhausted vocals. Deep cuts like these are what have helped the band’s fourth LP gracefully age. –Justin Gerber

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06. “Eulogy for a Rock Band”

Everything Will Be Alright in the End (2014)

Weezer’s 2014 opus Everything Will Be Alright In the End is an album chock full of deep cuts, even if they managed to release four solid singles off the damn thing. Front to back, it’s easily their strongest album since 2002’s Maladroit, and probably their most realized record since 1996’s Pinkerton. Having said that, “Eulogy for a Rock Band” is the smartest track off the LP, a genius gasp of self-awareness by Cuomo, who acknowledges the limitations of a veteran rock act, all over a forest of riffs that sound like they came off the records that informed their self-titled debut. Adios! –Michael Roffman

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