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Weezer's Pinkerton: The Story Behind the Album and How to Download It

, , , , etc. For example: Weezer's Pinkerton: A Cult Classic That Defined Emo Rock

Released on September 24, 1996, Pinkerton is the second studio album by American rock band Weezer. It is widely regarded as one of the best albums of the 1990s, as well as one of the most influential albums in emo rock. However, it was not always appreciated or understood by critics and fans alike. In fact, Pinkerton was initially a commercial flop and a critical disappointment that almost ended Weezer's career. How did this album go from being hated to being loved? What makes it so special and unique? In this article, we will explore the background, concept, music, lyrics, reception, and legacy of Pinkerton.


Weezer was formed in 1992 by singer-songwriter Rivers Cuomo, guitarist Brian Bell, bassist Matt Sharp, and drummer Patrick Wilson. They rose to fame with their self-titled debut album in 1994, which spawned hit singles like "Buddy Holly", "Undone The Sweater Song", and "Say It Ain't So". The album was praised for its catchy power pop melodies, geeky lyrics, and humorous videos. It sold over three million copies in the US and established Weezer as one of the most popular alternative rock bands of the time.

weezer pinkerton download

However, instead of repeating their successful formula, Weezer decided to take a different direction for their second album. They wanted to make a more personal, experimental, and challenging record that reflected their live sound and their musical influences. The result was Pinkerton , an album that was darker, rawer, and more confessional than their debut. It explored themes such as sex, love, identity, and regret, inspired by Cuomo's personal struggles, the opera Madama Butterfly, and Japanese culture. It also featured a heavier and more abrasive sound, influenced by bands like Nirvana, Pixies, and Pavement.

However, Pinkerton was not well received by the public or the critics when it came out. It sold poorly, barely reaching gold status in the US, and received mixed reviews, with some calling it immature, sexist, and self-indulgent. Cuomo himself felt embarrassed and rejected by the album, and went into a period of depression and isolation. He later called Pinkerton "a huge mistake" and "a hideous record" . Weezer went on a hiatus after touring for the album, and their future seemed uncertain.

But something unexpected happened in the years that followed. Pinkerton slowly but surely gained a cult following and a critical reappraisal, thanks to the internet, word-of-mouth, and the emergence of emo rock. Many fans and critics began to appreciate the album's honesty, emotion, and musicality, and recognized it as a masterpiece of alternative rock. Pinkerton was eventually ranked among the best albums of all time by publications like Rolling Stone , Pitchfork , and Spin . It also inspired many emo bands and fans with its raw and vulnerable expression of feelings. Pinkerton became a classic that defined a generation of rock music.

Background and Concept

Songs from the Black Hole

Pinkerton was not originally intended to be the album that it became. In fact, it was supposed to be a sci-fi rock opera called Songs from the Black Hole , which Cuomo had been working on since 1994. The concept was about a group of astronauts on a mission to save the universe from a cosmic disaster, while dealing with their personal relationships and conflicts. The characters were based on the members of Weezer and their friends, and each song represented a different scene or dialogue in the story. Cuomo had written several songs for the project, some of which were demoed or performed live by Weezer.

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However, Cuomo soon realized that Songs from the Black Hole was too ambitious and complicated to execute. He also felt that it was too detached from his own reality and emotions. He decided to scrap the project and start over with a new concept that was more personal and authentic. He said: "I realized that what I really wanted to sing about were all these things I was going through at Harvard: feeling alone; having trouble relating to people; having trouble relating to girls; feeling confused about sex; feeling guilty about sex; feeling confused about what I wanted to do with my life" . He also wanted to make an album that sounded more like Weezer's live shows, which were louder and more energetic than their studio recordings.

Rivers Cuomo's Personal Struggles

Cuomo's decision to attend Harvard University in 1995 was one of the main factors that influenced his songwriting for Pinkerton . He enrolled as an undergraduate student in English literature, hoping to expand his horizons and find new inspiration. However, he soon found himself feeling lonely, alienated, and depressed in the academic environment. He said: "I didn't make any friends there at all. I just stayed in my room studying or writing songs or reading books" . He also felt insecure about his appearance and his musical abilities. He said: "I felt like I had no sex appeal whatsoever ... I felt like I had nothing to offer anybody" .

Another source of pain for Cuomo was his leg surgery in 1995. He had been born with one leg shorter than the other, which caused him chronic back pain and discomfort. He decided to undergo a corrective procedure that involved breaking his leg bone and stretching it with a metal device over several months. The process was painful and debilitating, and affected his mobility and mood. He said: "It was really hard for me to deal with ... I couldn't walk for six months ... I felt like a freak" . He also felt guilty for spending his money on the surgery instead of donating it to charity.

All these factors contributed to Cuomo's sense of disillusionment and frustration with his life and his music. He said: "I was really unhappy ... I hated being in Weezer ... I hated being at Harvard ... I hated everything" . He channeled these feelings into his songs for Pinkerton , which were more raw and honest than anything he had written before.

Madama Butterfly and Japanese Culture

One of the main inspirations for Pinkerton was the opera Madama Butterfly by Giacomo Puccini, which Cuomo had seen in 1994. He was moved by the tragic story of Cio-Cio San, a Japanese geisha who falls in love with an American naval officer named B.F. Pinkerton, who marries her and then abandons her. Cuomo related to the character of Pinkerton, who he saw as a symbol of his own selfishness and immaturity. He said: "I identified very strongly with him ... I felt like I had done the same thing to a lot of girls that I had dated and then left behind" . He also admired the character of Cio-Cio San, who he saw as a symbol of purity and devotion. He said: "She was so beautiful and innocent and faithful ... I wished I could find a girl like that" .

Cuomo decided to name the album after the character of Pinkerton, and to use the opera as a framework for his songs. He said: "I thought it would be a great way to organize all these songs that I had written about different girls and different experiences" . He also used some of the lyrics and melodies from the opera in his songs, such as "Across the Sea", "Butterfly", and "El Scorcho". He said: "I wanted to pay tribute to Puccini and to show how much his music had influenced me" .

Besides the opera, Cuomo was also fascinated by Japanese culture in general, which he had been exposed to through his father, who had lived in Japan for several years. He said: "I loved everything about Japan ... the language, the food, the art, the history, the people" . He


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