The internet is abuzz over Weezer's drummer Patrick Wilson catching a frisbee while drumming and continuing to play "Beverly Hills." That was at their St. Augustine show last week. And though it is impressive to say the least, I'm more excited that he played and sang Blur's "Song 2" on Rivers Cuomo's guitar last night at Hard Rock Live in Hollywood while the Japan-loving, sweater-wearing singer bit his lower lip and concentrated on the drums.
This was my first time at a Weezer concert, so, bear with me if you're a regular at yelling "I am Weezer" at a show. I didn't know, for instance, that throwing around a frisbee but not being able to keep it, is a thing. That though Cuomo didn't look particularly engaged during portions of the night, he could still charm the pants off probably 80% of the crowd with his banter, and manage to get us all choked up with his magical songs. Because he really is kind of magical and always has been. Even when he was way weirder.
Before getting into more details, I admit that I love the Blue Album and Pinkerton more than words can express. I'd have to like write a romantic poem here to even come close. Lately, they've been playing full albums at shows, so when they kicked off with "My Name Is Jonas," I almost soiled my drawers. There was no doubt we were getting the full Blue Album. But I should have had doubts, because that wasn't our fate at all.
But let's back up a sec. The ever-entertaining and truly talented Nashville brother duo JEFF the Brotherhood opened up with a seriously hearty, crisp helping of power guitar all tossed up in a tasty dressing of stoner metal, garage, doom, and indie '90s rock. Singer Jake Orrall offered a full guitar assault that really was mind-bending, if not mind-blowing. It was the perfect opening act for Weezer or anyone heavy or hard. JTB's got the indie cool cred Weezer now lacks, but well prepares you for the emotional guitar-work that's then coming your way with a quickness.
So, instead of playing all of the Blue Album, Weezer did about four songs off of it and only one Pinkerton song, which broke my heart. It was the weirdest thing, because most of the world pooh-poohs Weezer's newer stuff, but after hearing the songs live, I wanted to hear more. And even more odd was that most of the audience could sing along with all those other songs I didn't know.
There was plenty of stuff that would melt even an icy Weezer-hating heart. Each member of the band sang songs, at least one each. And Wilson, when they went around saying hello during the band intros, sang, "Timbaland knows how to reach the top of the charts" to the tune of "Pork and Beans." I don't know, it was part of a larger Weezer-y thing, but it was good.
Another this-is-too-cute highlight was Cuomo sitting down for a sing-chat. "Florida, how you doing?" he sang. "Did you hear the thunder today?" And then he even made a thunder sound. "It was actually kind of scary in my hotel room. You don't get that in LA... But everything turned out alright." He also joked, "Ain't talking about the soft rock hotel" in regard to the venue's name, which was adorbs. But then the band performed "Island in the Sun" which may or may not have played on a soft rock station somewhere in the universe.
There were some jammy interludes. Cuomo prefaced "Say It Ain't So" with a sort of bluesy Hendrix mini-solo. And if you didn't get emotional during that song, you are soulless, and I can't trust you. But after "Undone (The Sweater Song)" the band started to really mess around. That's when "Song 2" happened. The set was pretty short, with only a two song encore. Cuomo shot a video of the crowd, which gave us all a thrill (hands in the air, "yay!").
Then it was time for "Buddy Holly," and the whole lot of them went and played drums on Wilson's kit at the same time, which, again, was heart-warming. Next time though, they could sacrifice a little adorable for more Pinkerton. And if I ever get to hear "Only in Dreams" live, I will write that poem I mentioned before. And it will be beautiful, or cute, at the very least.