Hands up if you thought Weezer’s last album Raditude was…well, shit. Yeah, I thought so, which is a shame because I do love this band. So when the new album Hurley was announced, I didn’t get the same level of excitement for this band as I have in the past. Named after a character from the TV show Lost and featuring his big hairy mug on the cover, Hurley was streamed on the band’s MySpace page for a few days before its release. So, the question is, have Rivers Cuomo and the boys redeemed themselves or have they continued on into mediocrity?
The album starts off well. The first three tracks are pure Weezer in sound. Memories, Ruling Me and Trainwrecks are great pop rock numbers that Weezer are capable of writing. Instant hooks and singable choruses, you start to remember why you like this band when listening to these tracks.
Unspoken is an acoustic number with a rock guitar finish; the kind of tracks Weezer have always had throughout their career. An okay track, but a touch disappointing after the strong start.
Where’s My Sex shows where Rivers sometimes fails in songwriting as this is an atrocity suited to the previous album. (think I’m Your Daddy) The music and tempo is disjointed and is difficult to listen to. Run Away doesn’t grab you in as instantly as the first few tracks but has potential to grow on you. Mid paced rock number that holds more than just filler.
Hang On has a big orchestral timpani style opening and features that forlorn never-give-up on-our-love theme that is scattered throughout Weezer’s career. Smart Girls has a nice drum loop and huge pop punk sound similar to the opening three tracks and the album starts to turn itself around again.
Brand New World is the longest track on the album clocking in at 3:56. Again, very mid-paced rock with a bit if synthesizer in the background and does nothing to offend or please. Probably a track that will get skipped in time.
Final track Time Flies features a mandolin and some Spanish sounding guitar and actually shows when Weezer’s experimentation works, which in their eight-album career they tend to fall behind on. Probably not the best track to end the album on, but nonetheless enjoyable to listen to.
Final verdict- sorry kids, this is not another Pinkerton. It’s not a bad album. Better than Raditude; nowhere as good as the self-titled colour albums (Red, Green and Blue). For fans, look at this one to sit around the Maladroit/Make Believe in interest and listenability. Again, in a few months you’ll only play a handful of tracks and more than likely skip the rest. I still maintain a greatest hits album from Weezer could be the best disc ever. Or maybe they should just make EPs and leave off all the shit songs.