Following much hemming and boatload of hawing, all is set in stone for Weezer
's many-moons-in-the-making third album. Produced by Ric Ocasek, The Green Album
will drop as planned on May 15th, its cover art closely resembling that of the band's eponymous debut (lovingly called "The Blue Album") -- a picture of the foursome against a solid backdrop. The nod to their 1994 nerd-core breakthrough is no doubt intentional, a clear signal that Rivers Cuomo and Co. have returned, at least in part, to the signature neo-New Wave sound somewhat absent from 1996's poorer-selling second album, Pinkerton
According to a posting at the Web site of unofficial fifth Weezer member, longtime band roadie Karl Koch, Interscope/Geffen had hoped to push the record's release back to mid-June, a move that, "did NOT go over well with the band . . . in a heated behind the scenes debate with some label higher-ups, the exasperated guys got their way, and May 15th stuck!"
The album's relatively dark first single, "Hash Pipe," an apparent take on Los Angeles prostitution ("I can't love my business if I can't get a drink/Down on Santa Monica where tricks are for kids"), has already begun illuminating request boards from sea to shining sea. A video for the song, recently wrapped with director Marcos Siega (Papa Roach
, Eve 6
), looks to feature the guys playing while a group of mammoth sumo wrestlers push and pummel one another. The clip should find its way to your local video channel closer to the album's release. Siega is already rumored signed on to shoot a video for the second single, for the significantly sweeter album opener "Don't Let Go" ("Anything you desire I will set at your feet with a kiss").
Weezer are currently in Japan, powering through a set of dates in Osaka and Tokyo, after which they'll play three shows stateside -- April 28th at the Southern California's Coachella Music Festival, May 12th at the KDGE Festival in Dallas, and May 13th at the KMYZ Birthday Bash in Claremore, Oklahoma -- before hopping the pond for gigs in Germany and the U.K. Weezer's recent announcement that they won't be playing this summer's Warped Tour has led to speculation that they might sign on with the mysterious Jubilee Tour, the forthcoming summer package from Jane's Addiction frontman/former Lollapalooza guru Perry Farrell (both bands will be playing the Coachella Festival).
The track listing for The Green Album
1. Don't Let Go
3. Hash Pipe
4. Island in the Sun
6. Knock Down Drag Out
8. Simple Pages
9. Glorious Day
10. O Girlfriend
The U.K. version of the album will include the song "I Do," while the Japanese version will include "I Do" and "The Christmas Song."
Written by GREG HELLER
for RollingStone.com News