Brow Beat

Weezer Just Released a Surprise Album, and It’s All Covers

The cover of Weezer's Teal album.
The best kind of surprise is a Weezer surprise.
Weezer

Everybody’s getting in on the surprise album drop trend, even bands who’ve been around long enough that one of their music videos was featured on the Windows 95 CD. So this surprise tweet on Wednesday night from a surprising band about a surprise album with a surprising concept should have been no surprise:

Surprise! Weezer is Weezer’s 11th studio album and their fifth eponymous album, joining 1994’s Weezer, 2001’s Weezer, 2008’s Weezer, and 2016’s Weezer. Weezer’s upcoming album Weezer, scheduled to be released in March, will be Weezer’s sixth Weezer. The albums are informally known by the color of their artwork, so the newest Weezer is the Teal Album. Their latest outing finds the band leaning into the success of their cover of Toto’s “Africa” with a lineup of cover songs that’s heavy on the early 1980s. Here’s the tracklist:

• “Africa” (Toto, 1982)
• “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” (Tears For Fears, 1985)
• “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” (Eurythmics, 1983)
• “Take On Me” (A-ha, 1984)
• “Happy Together” (The Turtles, 1967)
• “Paranoid” (Black Sabbath, 1970)
• “Mr. Blue Sky” (Electric Light Orchestra, 1977)
• “No Scrubs” (TLC, 1999)
• “Billie Jean” (Michael Jackson, 1982)
• “Stand By Me” (Ben E. King, 1961)

These are surprisingly faithful covers—even “No Scrubs”—which means your initial guess about how good a Weezer version of a particular song would be is probably correct, especially if you are guessing that asking anyone but Michael Jackson to sing a Michael Jackson song is a mistake. Their take on “Take on Me,” on the other hand, is a blast: the keyboards are just as lush as the original, but backed by live drums and bass the entire sound changes. “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” and “Mr. Blue Sky” are also highlights. You can check out Weezer (the Teal Album) via the streaming service of your choice here.