Rivers Cuomo reflects on Weezer’s ‘Pinkerton’: “It was supposed to be our magnum opus and it just got destroyed”

The band's second album celebrates its 25th anniversary later this year

Rivers Cuomo has reflected on the mixed response that greeted the release of Weezer‘s album ‘Pinkerton’ upon its release in 1996.

The record, which was the band’s second studio album, will celebrate its 25th anniversary in September.

Cuomo looked back on ‘Pinkerton’ during a recent interview with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe, with the frontman citing the album when asked by Lowe which of Weezer’s LPs he’d like to revisit with the orchestral approach that was applied to the band’s new album ‘OK Human’.


​“Those are the most complex songs and they’re the most emotional songs,” Cuomo explained about the tracks on ‘Pinkerton’ (you can watch the discussion at the 7:38 mark in the video below). ​“And yet, the way we recorded is so raw, four-piece rock noise. I’d be really interested to hear that with an orchestra.”

Cuomo also said that ‘Pinkerton’ ​“was supposed to be our magnum opus and it just got destroyed – and it’s almost like the game over for our band”.

Despite the mixed reviews, Cuomo said that he still loves ‘Pinkerton’ – especially his vocals.

“Especially, I love the sound of my voice,” the musician said. ​“It’s very low in the mix. I’d love to hear a remix of the vocal louder, but there’s just so much pain and vulnerability in my voice.”

Cuomo continued: “I don’t know if this is disillusioning at all, but I think some of the pain you hear in my voice [on ‘Pinkerton’] is actually physical.


​“At that time I was going through this procedure on my leg where I had all these pins and spikes and wires going through my muscle and bone, and for a year and a half, and this is constant pain. And right in the middle of that, I went and recorded the vocals for the album.

“So I just sound like I’ve been through a lot and I think some of that is physical. And maybe if you want to have a really great vocal performance, you could consider some kind of self-torture device…”

Last month, Cuomo said that the European dates on Weezer’s Hella Mega Tour with Green Day and Fall Out Boy are still scheduled to go ahead this summer.

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