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The Critics Corner: Albums
Weezer | Hurley
Alt-rockers return to indie roots on latest album
Name: "Hurley"
Label: Epitaph
Release Date: September 14, 2010
My rating: 4.0 out of 5

Review by: Ashley Rosenberg
For a better part of the past 18 years, Weezer has been entertaining our ear buds with their unique sound and lyrics.  Their albums contain a great mix of songs which evoke thoughtfulness, independence, inspiration, and spontaneity.  Hurley is full of just that; it is a great addition to the other 7 albums that Weezer has released and does not fail to harbor the band's true essence.

Memories is a great track to begin the album with.  The song explodes on after a guitar introduction, much like a surge of nostalgia coming over a person.  Weezer reminisces its past in this song, singing about times that they had when they were younger and in the band's younger years.  This song is very upbeat and happy, just like memories of good times are.

The second track, Ruling Me, is an upbeat, retro sounding song; it kind of reminded me of a Beach Boys style.  The harmonies and guitar combine with the lyrics which tell about a relationship where one half knows the other so well.  It looks back on the good points as a reminder of how they got to this point.

The next song is about a couple who is imperfect, but work perfectly together.  Trainwrecks has the musical feel of a moving train; the beats actually allude to a train ride.  This song is very rich and relatable as though most couples are not completely functional, it is their dysfunctions that make them so great for each other.

Unspoken is a song about a girl who seems to be taking advantage of her boyfriend; she does things that he cannot stand which makes him resent her. With minimal instruments, Weezer creates the perfect mood to accompany the song with just guitars and vocal harmonies. The next song seemed like a sort of satire on the oversexed attitude of people today.  Where's My Sex has a funky beat kept together by the guitar and drums.

Run Away expresses the feeling of not having enough time with someone; they may be gone before you know it.  It's the feeling of wanting to take a person and a moment and just run away, keeping it forever and not wanting things to end and people to move on.  The retro sounds in this song are kept current by the beats and

Everyone goes through tough times in life; even though reaching the bottom means you're on the way up again, it seems hard to even believe that it is possible to get out of these funks and situations.  Hang On reminds us that even in the most unbearable times, we all have friends who will help pull us through and help us get back to “okay”.

The seventh song, Brave New World is a very energetic and inspiring song.  The energy of the guitar at the beginning and throughout the song sparks an on the edge feeling.  This song is about being daring, leaving your comfort zone and getting a move on to something that you've been unsure about.  Sometimes leaving comforts is not easy, but it is the only way to get to the next level that your'e seeking.

Weezer's quirky songs always show passion about something. Insects is a song with themes of environmental awareness and preserving even the most overlooked creatures.  The song begins, sounding like an old movie and moves into a fun tune about being friends with insects.  I could see this song being used to teach children the importance of preserving the environment and going green.  This song was cute and funny and  a great, different way to express the importance of being environmentally conscious.

The album takes a break from original tracks with a fantastic cover of Coldplay's Viva La Vida.  Though Weezer stays in line with Coldplay's style, adding in the unique vocals to their hit song.

Represent has heavier sounds than most of the other songs on this album.  It's a motivating song about being on that edge where you want to be your own person, do things for yourself and not having others make your decisions for you.  It's the point that you get to when you want to live your own life, look back and see all of the things that independence has brought you.  This song is full of heavier guitars and drums bringing an edgy but serious sound to the album.

The next song, Smart Girls is a funky song, livened up by the guitar.  It starts off slowly and picks up with quirky lyrics about meeting and getting with girls.  Time Flies is a very moving a relatable song; time is always moving, but there are certain points in life where it hits you.  You don't realize how much has happened and changed until you really look back on everything.  This song is raw and real; it's harmonies and mostly acoustic sound really makes the song's meaning hit home.

In this same sentiment, I Want To Be Something  closes the album with one final raw, acoustic song.  The song is stripped down and evokes the real feelings of the restlessness and frustration of seeing people sit around wasting time and doing nothing.  He wants to do something and be something; not be another one to just sit and watch time move on without him.

I loved the balance of seriousness and quirkiness in this album.  This was definitely a true Weezer album; they have not lost what has made their band and sound unique.  This album expresses a lot of nostalgia and appreciation for the past and life as well as yearning for hopes, dreams, and the future.  The songs hit very close to home and their sound and individuality does not fail to resound throughout the whole album.
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