Sundays and Mondays. Not the preffered nights to have gigs on for weekly workers… its takes a certain kinda band to drag me out on Sunday night, let alone after a Monday slog. Weezer however can count themselves as a band that are worth the effort. Not only do they rarely tour around the country any more, they have a new album to promote. The people of Leeds are ready…
Outside the touts are struggling to sell some tickets, but indoors the place is totally packed to the rafters. There is no room at all. I try every area of the stalls to try and steal a view but it is nigh on impossible. I reserve myself to the very back, which with the overhanging balcony reveals only a letterbox view of the backdrop, which at least in this case is a big glitzy ‘W’.
The Orwells are already near the end of their set as I arrive. They are hailed as a raucous live act but I must have missed all that. It’s interesting that both bands frontmen have the same surname…
There’s a huge gap between bands, 45 minutes. Weezer are on promptly though, and Rivers Cuomo is the first to be seen in a Kings crown and cape. The shy looking frontman leads the band though ‘King Of The World’, a tune from the White Album that did hark back to the sound of the earlier albums of hue.
There is a good mixture of albums here; ‘Raditude’, ‘Maladroit’ and ‘Hurley’ are the only ones of the eleven albums the LA band have released since 1992 that are left out. The hits from ‘Pinkerton’ are included; in fact the band seem to have chosen two hits from the majority of their albums.
The inclusion of a cover of Outkast’s ‘Hey Ya!' is a crowd uplifter, and not many songs can bring the pace back down in a good way but ‘Undone (the Sweater Song)' certainly manage it. ‘My Name Is Jonas’ is among the best received songs of the evening, with the ending sang in unison sounding like a football chant “The workers are going home!”
The last few songs read like a party going into a come down, ‘Took a Pill in Ibiza’, ‘Island in the Sun’, ‘Feels Like Summer’ and ‘Hash Pipe’! The penultimate song here is a new track from ‘Pacific Daydream’ which is out this Friday, the other track being ‘Weekend Woman’. The packed crowd are here for the hits mainly, quell surprise, so it’s wise of the band to only premiere two songs on this pre-release tour.
The band themselves do not say much between songs, its ‘My Name is Jonas’ before Cuomo speaks to the crowd to introduce these newer songs. Its garage rock as only Weezer do best for the rest of the time. ‘Surfwax America’ airs early on but is a crowd favourite. Some tracks like ‘Photograph’ and ‘Why Bother’ would have been amazing to hear.
The chug of ‘Beverley Hills’ leads into ‘Say It Ain’t So’, which then preludes what else but ‘Buddy Holly’. If only there was a little more room to breath here this gig would have been amazing.
King of the World
The Good Life
No One Else
Surf Wax America
Thank God for Girls
My Name is Jonas
Pork and Beans
A ballad for the Fallen Soldier
Undone (the Sweater Song)
Took a Pill in Ibiza
Island in the Sun
Feels Like Summer
Say It Ain’t So