Weezer Talks Cruise, New Record, Schooling Dinosaur Jr.
Led by Rivers Cuomo, one of modern rock's more unlikely figures, Weezer has never done things quite conventionally. While others have pointed to Weezer as a forefather to the modern emo movement, a tongue-in-cheek feeling follows the nearly 20-year-old band, right down to its latest scheme: the Weezer Cruise.
Announced July 14, the seaside jaunt finds Weezer leading its own lido deck alongside musical pals Dinosaur Jr., Wavves, the Antlers, Yuck and tour openers through the years. Weezer drummer Pat Wilson, who has traded his set for an electric guitar in live shows through the years, sees himself challenging cruisemates Dinosaur Jr. to a guitar shred-off. "I'll show that old boy a thing or two," Wilson jokes of the alt-rockers' leader, J Mascis.
The four-day voyage, through Carnival Cruises, will leave from Miami on Jan. 19, sailing to Cozumel, Mexico before ending its journey back in Miami on Jan. 23.
"Personally, once I heard the Yacht Rock Revue was involved, I was all in," Wilson tells Billboard.com of the cruise, which, yes, will include something called the "Yacht Rock Revue." Not even Wilson was quite sure what to expect from it. But what can expected from the cruise are "plenty of opportunities to interact with the fans," says Wilson, who anticipates Weezer will play two big shows on the nautical journey.
In addition to the cruise, the SoCal band kicks off a two-show experiment of sorts alongside the Flaming Lips tonight (July 28) in Holmdel, N.J. (PNC Bank Arts Center). Weezer will play "side-by-side" with the Lips, alternating songs throughout the one-stage headlining set, which continues tomorrow on Long Island (Nikon at Jones Beach).
"I think it was Rivers or Wayne [Coyne, Flaming Lips frontman] who said, 'Why don't we just sort of combine the set, and trade songs?'" Wilson says. "And I thought, when I first heard that, 'That's pretty cool but it's a lot of work.' Plus we might have to find a two-person bubble."
Weezer is no stranger to unconventional (and selective) touring methods, kicking off a five-city tour last fall that found the band playing its much-loved first two albums -- "The Blue Album" and "Pinkerton" -- in their entirety.
"We don't tour the way we used to," Wilson says. "We used to go out for months at a time in a bus and kind of lose your mind. Nowadays, we've all got kids and we just pick our spots. We much prefer it, actually."
A less hectic touring schedule also frees up Weezer, who have released three new albums in as many years, for more frequent recording sessions. Wilson says the band is "in talks of new recording sessions." "There's no date set, but it's definitely on the schedule."
Wilson adds that his longtime side project, the Special Goodness, is gearing up for the release of a fourth album. "I have 10 songs that are being mixed right now, so I should have that out, I'm hoping, before the holidays."