Maladroit dotmusic record review
|Studio album by Weezer
|May 14, 2002
Reviewer: Chris Heath (dotmusic)
Publishing date: May 30, 2002
Three albums in seven years hardly qualifies as a hectic work-rate but Weezer's 'quality over quantity' approach has done them no harm. And let's not forget that Weezer, or more accurately 'the moodiest man in rock' Rivers Cuomo, opted out of the rat race. It's not like they've spent the intervening year scrounging around for ideas or twiddling their collective thumbs.
Bearing this in mind, it came as a shock when Weezer announced that, instead of a half-decade hibernation, 'Maladroit' would follow the widely adored 'Green' album in less than a year. What's wrong with them?
Even though the album's title might set the odd alarm bell ringing, it's not a major course for concern. Sure, it's fuelled by bitterness and recrimination, paranoia and romantic instability but haven't they always been? Record company politics (which prompted the band to stream demos of this album from their official site) and the general hijacking of Weezer's business model i.e. Emo-Rock have sparked Cuomo back into life.
Inevitably but not predictably, 'Maladroit' follows roughly along the lines of its immediate predecessor, which is no bad thing. But 'Maladroit' is a more satisfying half an hour than the often-impersonal 'Green' album. Quick-fire melody-driven, riff-heavy pop songs that resurrect the gritty, edginess of 'Pinkerton'. The best of both worlds basically.
There are so many tracks on 'Maladroit' that should be squeezed into your list of favourite Weezer songs. A rotation system would probably make things a lot easier. Try the 'Hash Pipe' of this album 'Dope Nose' and the bouncing 'Keep Fishin' for starters. Then move on to teary 'Slob', the jiggy 'Burndt Jamb' and hug-your-partner feel of 'Slave'. They're all contenders.
If the 'Green' album was a slap around the face as a reminder of how great this band can be, then 'Maladroit' shoves ice cubes down your pants and sets fire to your hair. It sticks two fingers up to the copycats and makes some sense of the incomprehensible. Expect laughter, tears, angry, hurt, and happiness at the same time and life's little injustices picked over in Weezer's own unique way.
So that's the fourth classic album out of the way. Same time next year, lads.
— Chris Heath, May 30, 2002
- Original review (Archived webpage)