Weezer Restores Faith in Their Core Sound and More Personal Lyrics on SZNZ: Autumn
4.7 out of 5 stars
The new album, SZNZ: Autumn - is by far the best of the SZNZ EP’s that will lead to a 4-part concept album once the winter version is released in December.
I actually didn’t have much to complain about on this one, because it felt a lot more like Weezer than anything I have heard since the OK Human album, which admittedly wasn’t really a Weezer “sounding” album. It was more the intimate and vulnerable Rivers Cuomo that made that album good (and any of their good albums good).
I will say the first song on the album “Can’t Dance, Don’t Ask Me” is a bit mainstream pop sounding, but it still manages to keep the Weezer sound in it that a lot of their newer stuff has abandoned to appeal to a more broad audience.
“Get Off On The Pain” has so many good pieces to it. It’s a bit smashed together in composition, but this is the kind of song that really is what I expect from Weezer. It actually sounds like it belongs on the Make Believe album. Not exactly my overall favorite album, but I definitely do like that one.
“What Happens After You?” definitely has the OK Human vibe to it, and I am all for it. While the chorus has that Maroon 5 sound in it, it’s not a blatant rip off or a huge part of the song. So, I am totally fine with it.
I think the main thing I am appreciating is the way the guitar solos and instrumentation don’t try to follow a construct like the Van Weezer album. It’s naturally flowing, and sounds cohesive without being forced.
“Francesca” is another example of a good song, and this one actually reminds me of the style from Everything Will Be Alright in the End which was an excellent album aside from the song “Cleopatra” which was annoying.
“Should She Stay or Should She Go” definitely seems like a light-hearted song, but it is detailing trying to find a way to talk about a lover who is not being honest where even turning to God as a last resort is on the table.
If you need some self-loathing in your diet, look no further than “Tastes Like Pain” as it is probably the most self-deprecating song I have heard from Weezer.
The EP (or maybe just 7-song album, really) ends with “Run, Raven, Run” which is over 5 minutes long, and has a very cool solo at about the 3-minute mark that brings back memories of “Only In Dreams” in all the good ways. The whole song is quite good.
Though the lyrics are exactly great in this album, I think they work well enough to fit the purpose of the songs, and they aren’t distracting like many of the more recent songs (especially on Van Weezer) where it is obvious that they lyrics were a bit of an afterthought.
This album put the subject matter up front, as there were actually points to be made, and feelings to project. A huge relief as I think this is the best collection of songs since OK Human, and the best “Weezer sound” since Everything Will Be Alright In The End.