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Ranking: Every Weezer Album from Worst to Best

on March 01, 2019, 8:55am
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10. Weezer (The Red Album) (2008)


Weezer (The Green Album) is only 35 minutes. If you omitted tracks 7, 8, and 9 from Weezer (The Red Album), it would be the same length, not to mention damn-near perfect. And while our cowboy hats (or fedoras, if you’re a Brian Bell fan) go off to Cuomo for letting his bandmates take the pen and the mic on one song apiece, it was still a little jarring to hear a different lead voice that far into Weezer’s career. Also, all of the songs written solely by Cuomo dealt with some form of nostalgia, giving Red a fairly strong concept that got broken up by the three cuts in the middle. And that’s not just nostalgia for friends or relationships either. “Heart Songs” bittersweetly rattles off the musical influences of his youth, and the genius epic “The Greatest Man That Ever Lived (Variations on a Shaker Hymn”) finds Weezer emulating some of those very same bands, including Weezer. –Dan Caffrey


09. Hurley (2010)

weezer hurley Ranking: Every Weezer Album from Worst to Best

Troll us once, shame on Weezer; troll us twice, maybe it’ll actually be a great troll the second time. “Mom made my sex, she knitted it with her hands/ Sex-making is a family tradition/ Going back to the caveman days/ They were walking around in a haze/ Until they figured it out and they said, ‘Gosh dang this is great!’” That’s Cuomo on “Where’s My Sex?”, a masterpiece of self-flagellation and pretty much all you need to know about the album on which it appeared. Hurley’s predecessor and counterpart-in-transparent-cheekiness, Raditude, gave so few fucks about the Weezer legacy it was offensive; Hurley was so thoroughly devoid of them it was almost seriously impressive. –Steven Arroyo


08. Weezer (The Teal Album) (2019)

Weezer, 80s Covers, Teal Album, Covers Album

For maybe the first and last time in history, tracks from TLC and Ozzy Osbourne have found a home on the same record thanks to The Teal Album, where Weezer assembles an eclectic mixed bag of songs and covers them with an impressive attention to detail. The level of care they undertook in covering each track is apparent through the fact that each musical element that made the original versions so beloved is thoroughly replicated — whether it be the signature jaunt of Electric Light Orchestra’s “Mr. Blue Sky”, the sharp sting of Ozzy’s “Paranoid”, or the warm, resonant charm of Ben E. King’s “Stand by Me”, Weezer paid expert homage to all that made each track special. Yet, the songs on The Teal Album stand out because they also surpass mere carbon-copy status. The tracks are personalized enough to make it distinctly identifiable as a Weezer album and do so while simultaneously upholding the sanctity of the original tracks. Weezer’s ability to walk that line, even though it is certainly a difficult line to walk, makes The Teal Album a worthwhile curiosity in their discography. –Lindsay Teske


07. Pacific Daydream (2017)

weezer pacific daydream new album Ranking: Every Weezer Album from Worst to Best

Holistically, there forever remains a razor-fine divide between Weezer’s most enchanting work and its most humdrum output, a kind of Weezer-specific horseshoe theory where a praising description of their finest record doesn’t sound all that different from a critique of their least interesting. But if you ever wanted to hear Weezer at their professionally sharpest, this is surely it. It’s no surprise that Cuomo is a fan of pop smashes like Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe”, as Pacific Daydream might be more Train than Ozma. Cuomo doesn’t owe anything to the alternative scene, if such a thing can even exist anymore in the era of everything all the time everywhere. After two albums of chumps like me exaggerating sighs of relief, churning out self-satisfied think-pieces of “oh, thank goodness, the boys have finally come home,” it might be that Cuomo gave us the damn records we wanted, so he could just go back to writing fun pop songs about summer. I doubt it, though. Given the two-step, this might be the record that definitively proves there’s simply a duality to Weezer that’s long been mistaken as before and after. This is who Cuomo and crew have always been, and it’s not their fault we decided to make them gods of the garage. –Jake Kilroy


06. Weezer (The White Album) (2016)

weezer white album Ranking: Every Weezer Album from Worst to Best

After winning over critics with 2014’s Everything Will Be Alright in the End, Weezer wasted little time in following up their success, delivering another solid entry and yet another self-titled album. Produced by Jake Sinclair, who previously engineered a couple of the band’s past singles, The White Album similarly revisits Weezer’s glory days, only Cuomo is less fantastical with regards to his metaphors this time around. He’s no longer sharing lullabies and bedtime stories, but working from his sandy journals as he pays homage to the great state of California. As usual, Cuomo’s at his best when he’s singing from his heart (“California Kids”, “L.A. Girlz”) as opposed to the radio (“Thank God for Girls”, “King of the World”), but that inner struggle has come to define him — he’s always looking for the right hook, the right melody, and the right rhythm. He certainly doesn’t come up empty on The White Album; he even strays off the beaten path a little (see: closing, gorgeous seashore ballad “Endless Bummer”), and that’s a good thing for him and an even better thing for us. –Michael Roffman


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