It’s hard to believe that Weezer’s eponymous debut album (or The Blue Album as most people call it) is 20 years old. The songs are timeless, and it feels strange to think that I’ve been singing (badly) along to hits like Buddy Holly, Say It Ain’t So and Undone – The Sweater Song for (gulp) two decades now!
Orlando, Florida’s You Blew It! have decided to pay their respects to this record by covering five Weezer classics for their forthcoming EP, the humourously titled You Blue It. It’s out digitally on the 21st of July, and will get the vinyl treatment on the 12th of August. You can find order details at topshelfrecords.com.
The band haven’t touched Buddy Holly – some things are sacrosanct – but they have covered four album tracks – My Name Is Jonas, Surf Wax America, In The Garage and Only In Dreams, plus the b-side Susanne.
Respect is the key word here – frontman Tanner Jones says, “our goal was to add our touch to The Blue Album, but, first and foremost, we wanted to pay tribute to the songs themselves.” Regarding My Name Is Jonas, he adds, “we decided to keep the song as is, and bow our heads in respect for a song that begs nothing but tribute.”
That pretty much applies to all five tracks, although the band do add their own touches – Only In Dreams becomes an even more tender number than the original, while Susanne gets the acoustic treatment it was always crying out for.
It might seem a bit strange to release a pretty much straight collection of covers, but what really matters is: how do these songs sound? If you’re familiar with the originals then I hope you’ll agree when I say they more than hold their own. If you’ve never heard these tracks before then I hope you’ll agree that they’re entertaining enough to make you want to check out Weezer’s back catalogue.
That, as far as I’m concerned, is job done: reverential covers of near-inviolable originals that encourage you to look further. “Plus,” as the band puts it, “holy shit was it fun”!
21 July 2014.
Surf Wax America, My Name Is Jonas (Soundcloud streams below).
Listen to Surf Wax America:
Listen to My Name Is Jonas:
You can check out the band on Facebook.