My first memories of Weezer are very fond; the kind of musical memories that defines a person. They were one of the first bands that really encouraged deeper exploration of rock music. It was during my 6th grade year and my musical tastes fluctuated between Nirvana and Snoop Dogg. As much as I got pleasure from listening to Kurt and Snoop, my musical taste buds were just thirsty for something else. That was when I unlocked the door to Weezer. The Blue Album was rock and roll; it was upbeat, catchy, quirky yet solemn, and most importantly, fun.
The Blue Album Deluxe Edition boasts the original ten tracks from the original 1994 release. All the favorites from “My Name Is Jonas,” “Buddy Holly,” “Undone (The Sweater Song)”, and “Surf Wax America,” are present in the same glory they had ten years ago. It is actually quite remarkable to think that this album is ten years old. Even listening to this album a decade later, I can almost pick a new favorite song each time I listen to it. There is honestly nothing I can say about how great this album is. The Blue Album is one of those albums where it is quality in its entirety. How rare is that today?
The Deluxe Edition includes a second disc entitled Dusty Gems and Raw Classics where fourteen rare B-sides fill the air. Rivers Cuomo and friends are known to have plenty of B-sides floating around, and they have dusted off a few here. Two B-sides that really stand out are “Susanne” and “Jaime.” Not eye-catching song titles, but high-quality music to the ears. You also get a taste of some live versions of Blue Album charms; “My Name is Jonas,” “Surf Wax America,” and “No One Else.” These B-sides are probably worth the price of admission alone.
As solid as this deluxe Blue Album edition is, it is the DVD that will really tickle your fancy.
The video portion offers over three hours of Weezer footage as a DVD chronology that actually doesn’t feel that long when you view it. What makes this music DVD really stand out is how well organized and structured it is. The layout is down-to-earth yet engaging. Most music related DVDs are sloppily put together, jump all over the place, and tend to get boring. You can watch this DVD straight through, or by easily choosing a specific feature from the main menu.
The DVD can be credited to Karl Koch; longtime friend of the band and, in this case, the person behind the scenes. With the insane amount of footage, one must think that Koch was filming every little thing the band has done over the years. There is footage of everything from Weezer jamming, concerts, and random antics. The footage offers an insightful and illuminating glimpse into the brains and heart of the band in an almost documentary fashion. It also includes every Weezer video ever released as well as some unreleased music videos that the band created themselves. Nothing is left out.
One part of the DVD that shows how much of a wizard Koch really is has to be his videotape of a tribute concert to friends of the band, founders and leaders of the Weezer fan club–Mykel and Carli Allen. They were killed in a tragic car accident while on their way to a Weezer show in 1997. This is definitely a tear jerker that was really pieced together in a neat way.
After seeing how this was done, I feel as if this is the model of how it should be. There is no wasted space, no down time, everything is interesting and informative and laid out for you in an orderly fashion. It is a high quality piece for a high-class band.
For me, this Weezer Blue Album Deluxe Edition and Video Capture Device DVD really reminded me of how much Weezer has influenced my musical tastes from a decade’s past. Listening to the album and watching the DVD reminded me once again how good it feels to listen to the music that was part of you so many years ago.