By Séamus Smyth

5. Keep Fishin (Maladroit album)

It was where the waters of Weezer began to become murky. Similar to salt H2O, the taste of a poppy chorus was delicious, but never quenched the appetite. It made Weezer thirstier for pop-ready jams, and it would scream the beginning of the end. They kept fishin, but rather than in the oceans of Nirvana and grunge, they got lost in between Blink 182 and Britney Spears island and never looked back.


4. Hang On (Hurley Album)

It was Weezer trying something fresh on an instrumental level, but combining it with a winning verse from the Cuomo archives. A Celtic hammer pounds out the foundation of “Hang On,” for what is a traditional Weezer shell, furnished with hints of desires beyond friendship and a fridge full of rejection.


3. Heart Songs (The Red album)

Rivers Cuomo explained that “Heart Songs” isn’t a tour of his influences, but merely a random collection of artists that he happened to hear on the radio one day. But Cuomo has notoriously been full of shit the majority of his career, so we will go ahead and call this a package of some of the more influential musicians that have decorated the walls at Weezer headquarters. It’s a cute diddy that jumps from MJ to Cat Stevens, but easily the most memorable aspect is the climax where they ostensibly reference Nirvana’s Nevermind album, which perhaps has been the single biggest influence on not only their career, but on their strange, complex lives.


2. Runaway (Hurley album)

It might be the closest Weezer has ever come to capturing the magic of their first two albums, Pinkerton and the Blue album. Alas, it took them a decade to find the sacred potion, but it was worth the wait on the seriously underrated album, Hurley. Cuomo is one of the few rock stars whose lyrics don’t necessarily need to age with him. Hearing Cuomo sing about throwing rocks at the windows of anonymous women sounds more potent than hearing him sing about swimming in his acquired riches in Beverley Hills. The world has no qualms with Cuomo forever being a frustrated teenager just looking to be understood, but it was obvious he stopped listening the minute the Green album arrived.


1. Island in the Sun (The Green Album)

It was Jimmy Buffet music for kids too young to taste Pina Coladas. It was written on Rivers Cuomo’s happiest day ever, where he was likely surrounded by naked Japanese women and had finally been validated as one of the 90’s quintessential front men. The song is a four-minute summer vacation in the Caribbean. Rarely does a song clone its title so perfectly, but the Weez manage to capture exactly what an Island in the Sun should sound and feel like.