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American band Weezer comprises (from left) Wilson, Shriner, Cuomo and Bell. The group is set to play Singapore for the first time ever on Monday.

The White Album.

Fans matter to indie rockers Weezer

Aug 12, 2016 5:50 AM

WEEZER fans are a hard-core bunch and the members of the band won't have it any other way. Over the last 26 years, the legendary American alternative rockers have done everything from releasing demos to consulting them about what songs to record.

"I don't know why other bands aren't doing a lot of things (to connect with fans) but I know that Weezer is a very unique and special kind of organisation that includes its fans ... It just seems to be part of how our world works," explains bassist Scott Shriner of that unique bond.

The group is set to play Singapore for the first time ever on Monday.

Formed in 1992 by singer-guitarist and primary songwriter Rivers Cuomo, its current line-up comprises Patrick Wilson (drums), Brian Bell (guitar) and Shriner.

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Both Cuomo and Wilson are the only founding members left.

Weezer's 1994 self-titled debut dubbed The Blue Album shot them to fame instantly and featured the power-pop classics Buddy Holly, Undone (The Sweater Song) and Say It Ain't So.

The band's quirky music videos - some directed by Spike Jonze - have also became MTV staples; and Weezer is often credited for pioneering the emo genre.

With sales of 9.2 million albums in the US and over 17 million worldwide, the group is one of the world's most successful indie rock acts.

The upcoming concert is their only date in South-east Asia this year and is in support of their latest self-titled record dubbed The White Album.

It's their 10th studio release and like Everything Will Be Alright In The End (2014) before it, the work marks a return to their roots and original brand of catchy power pop.

The album is the first to be produced by Jake Sinclair, who has worked with other mega pop acts like Taylor Swift, Fall Out Boy, Pink and 5 Seconds of Summer.

Incidentally, Sinclair is "a really intense Weezer fan" and the band members worked individually with him for a change on the new record.

"We did a couple of songs where we all played together in a room, but those tracks quickly got erased and we went and re-did 'em all," shares Shriner. "Jake is also a fantastic bass player and musician so we got to build our basslines together and it was really fun to have a bassist as a producer."

Shriner admits he doesn't know the precise reason why The White Album has gone down so well with both the fans and critics but offers: "We kind of figured out a way to keep Weezer moving forward, and try new sounds and keep growing, but still keep the main formula intact ... It's not like just totally going back and repeating stuff (and) there's enough of this core element (which) we keep growing and adding to it."

And when the music is done, Weezer loves nothing more than going out on the road to play it in front of their fans.

"My favourite thing about touring is waking up and being in a totally new place, and everything is different; there's something freeing about that, for me," quips Shriner.

But he adds: "Something I don't like about touring is waiting around all day to play - I wish we could do, like, two shows, like a lunch show and a late night show. I love to play, and I love working on music. So I just would like to play more."

  • Weezer plays Suntec Singapore Convention and Exhibition Centre on Aug 15 at 8pm. Tickets from S$98 to S$168 available from Sistic. The White Album is out now on CD, vinyl and digital platforms