Back in the mid-90s listening to indie grunge band Weezer was a fairly uncool thing to be caught doing, but many people did it anyway, in the privacy of their own home so as not to be seen as fad-chasers by a malignantly critical music scene that looked down on anything attempting to stray from the Nirvana formula even a little bit. Weezer’s self-titled debut was seen as a poor take-off on the bass-heavy rock n’ roll that had been put on life support just a few years earlier. Little did people know, this alt-rock band led by singer/songwriter Rivers Cuomo had plans to move music forward, not regress into tried-and-true grunge-rock. Lead single “Buddy Holly” with it’s tongue-in-cheek lyrics and unique unstructured chorus showed as much. “What’s with these homies dissing my girl? Why do they gotta front?” infamously sings Cuomo in the romantic song that mixes ultra-violent imagery with a joking attitude that soon becomes infectious. While that juxtaposition of sex (love) and violence has become a Weezer (and Weezer copycats) staple 18 years later, it was a realtively unique idea for light rock at the time.
“Buddy Holly” and its subsequent silly (in a good way) music video didn’t make many people take Weezer seriously, but then came the brooding “Undone (The Sweater Song)”, a comparatively slow roller that was obvious in its lyrics, but remained vague in its overall meaning. At some point it appears to be about a relationship that can never be, at another a break-up song, but at the very beginning it sounds like its about the reluctance to join the same old stupid party that you always end up at on a Saturday night. The multitude of possible messages makes the song a must-repeat listen, not to mention its forward-looking musicality that would inspire Weezer copycats like Fountains of Wayne.