After a dispute with Geffen/Interscope over the release of its next album, Weezer has confirmed a May 14 street date for its fourth studio set, “Maladroit.” As previously reported, the group made a number of the “Maladroit” songs available online and personally sent radio stations and publications an eight-track “preview” disc. Several tracks garnered immediate airplay, particularly “Dope Nose,” which is already No. 14 on Billboard’s Modern Rock Tracks chart.
But according to Weezer’s official Web site, label executives insisted that frontman Rivers Cuomo “write a letter to all the radio stations that he had previously sent the ‘Maladroit’ promo CD to, asking them to hold off promoting the tracks on the CD until the record company was ready to service the ‘Dope Nose’ single.”
Demo versions of 13 new songs posted on Weezer.com in January also garnered some unintended radio airplay. Fully mixed versions of some of the tunes also began to appear in February, but shortly thereafter, the “audio-video” section of the site was “shut down,” with neither the band or the label offering an explanation. That feature has now been fully restored and is hosting a demo for the new song “Living Without You.”
Amid all this activity, Weezer has found time to begin work on its next studio set, which has been penciled in for a February 2003 release date.
“Maladroit” is the follow-up to last year’s self-titled “Green” album, which has sold more than 1.3 million copies to date in the U.S., according to SoundScan, and included the rock radio hits “Hash Pipe,” “Island in the Sun,” and “Photograph.” The group’s Dusty West ’02 North American tour with Pete Yorn and AM Radio kicks off April 23 in Edmonton, Alberta.