There’s a very clear concept behind Weezer’s latest album, Weezer (The White Album): It acts as a picture of beaches and summer, using surfers and Tinder for lyrical inspiration while desperately grasping for the style and energy that defined their albums in the 90s, mixing modern issues and tropes in its lyrics with the classic Weezer style that fans may have been waiting for. While the album isn’t always as quality as one would hope, the commitment to a style and the recalling of a previous era of their work often makes up for The White Album’s shortcomings.
In terms of capturing the classic Weezer style, the album succeeds. While it doesn’t provide a wide variety of styles to experience, the ten songs on the album all capture the classic energy perfectly with punchy arrangements and catchy hooks that make the album entertaining even in its lower moments. King of the World notably features one of the albums stronger hooks, with lyrics that may deal directly to his wife’s anxieties yet offer a relatable twist that adds a universal appeal to its personal lyrics. Thank God for Girls is the album’s strongest moment lyrically, though, with its discussion of modern dating and comparison to the story of Adam and Eve making for an entertaining romp backed up by its solid instrumental.
Strangely, given the album’s penchant for uncovering classic Weezer styles, L.A. Girlz’s throwback to their previously explored wall of sound style is the album’s weakest moment, with its lack of thrilling hooks making it a slow burner with nothing to capture your attention. The following song Jacked Up is mostly soured by Rivers Cuomo’s vocal performance, with the inclusion of straining falsetto struggling against the song’s awkward and repetitive piano-heavy instrumental, making for another questionable moment. The static, similar style of all the songs in itself is another weakness; while it’s obvious across the entire album, it only really becomes an issue when the aforementioned songs appear given that the earlier songs are often highly enjoyable, making it a forgivable problem.
The White Album still features a lot of compelling material, though, and largely succeeds at meeting the goals set during its creation. With the best songs frontloaded onto the album, the weaker second half makes the overall composition feel awkward. However, it also means that the album leaves a much better impression as it starts, and in the end this is what wins out; The White Album may not be Weezer’s strongest album, or even strong in comparison to Everything Will Be Alright in the End, but it’s definitely an enjoyable one with a winning first impression.