Allstate Arena – Rosemont, IL
October 2, 2008
The first thing that went through my mind when Weezer walked out on stage was: “Yup, I’m not at all surprised by what they’re wearing.” Granted, I had seen photos from previous shows on this tour and was prepared for the crazy white one-piece painter jump-suits. Or whatever the hell those things are called. However, the second thing that went through my head when the guys started playing the opening song “My Name Is Jonas” was: “Wait, why is the bassist singing lead vocals and not Rivers Cuomo?” Having never seen Weezer in concert before, as well as not owning any of their albums, I had no idea that the other three guys could also sing. Man oh man, was I impressed by these dudes or what?! Bassist Scott Shriner, drummer Patrick Wilson and guitarist Brian Bell can all sing just as well as Cuomo. And maybe it’s just me, but oddly enough, I though that all of their voices sounded weirdly similar to Rivers and each other. Throughout the band’s 90-minute performance all four members took turns changing up the vocal responsibility so that each one got their chance at playing the role of frontman for Weezer. Not your typical rock band, but hey, it’s Weezer. Thank goodness some band in this world is doing something to stand out and be different. This performance totally caught me off guard, which hasn’t happened to me at a show in a long time… Yay for Weezer!
More photos and the night’s set list after the jump!
After the first six songs I looked up and saw that Atom, the drummer from Angels & Airwaves, had taken the hot seat replacing Pat Wilson. Being a fan of AvA, I was all for this game of musical chairs between members of opener and headliner bands. The next thing I knew, Tom DeLonge – lead singer for AvA – was on stage to share lead vocals with Cuomo for “Undone” (The Sweater Song). Near the end of the concert, 30 of the Chicagoland area’s most die-hard Weezer fans were brought on stage for the first encore and jammed along with their musical heroes for “Island in the Sun” and the classic “Beverly Hills.” Not to alienate the rest of us commonfolks not rocking out on stage, Weezer made sure that people on the main floor and in the seats got to participate in all the fun. During “Island in the Sun” the crowd sang along to the redundant, yet insanely catchy “hip, hip” hook that carries the song from start to finish. It was great! If you have no idea what I am talking about I’m sorry, but you should have been there. Or just listen to that song and you’ll get what I’m referencing.
Who can forget the line: “Beverly Hills / That’s where I want to be! / Living in Beverly Hills”? This song blew up right along with America’s obsession with TV shows about the rich and beautiful people in good old Los Angeles. Every time I hear this song, I cannot help but think of shows like “Laguna Beach,” “The Hills,” “Entourage,” “The Girls Next Door” and of course “The O.C.” You know what I’m saying? Weezer pretty much wrote the perfect theme song for each of those shows. Seriously though, if you really think about it, their song “Beverly Hills” is the perfect song to have playing during the opening credits of each of the aforementioned TV programs. Does anyone else feel that way, or is it just me?
Set List 10/2/08 Chicago
My Name Is Jonas
Say It Ain’t So
Undone (w/ Tom)
Pork and Beans
Morning Glory (Oasis cover)
The Greatest Man That Ever Lived (Variations On a Shaker Hymn)
Island in the Sun
Heart Songs (vinyl into Sliver)
More audience interaction commenced with “Beverly Hills” when Rivers made the boys in the crowd sing (er, shout?) the chorus and then made the girls jump in with the background catch-phrase: “Gimme gimme, Gimme gimme.” Ha, let me tell you: I was not having that at all. No way was I going to play the dumb blonde bimbo (well, that’s what the girl sounds like on the record). Call me a rebel, but I joined the boys’ team and sang (more like yelled using my lowest range possible) the chorus. After all, that is my favorite part of the whole song and I don’t think anybody really minded my being a traitor to the girls’ team. But it was my first Weezer experience and I wanted to do whatever the hell I wanted to do in order to have the time of my life. So sue me. Weezer didn’t play a song off their new album, Weezer (Red Album), until seven songs into their set. This is something that I have never seen done before at any rock show. Usually when a band is touring in support of their latest album, the first song of the night is a new one. Weezer played six songs from their back catalog before performing “King,” a bonus track from the new record. Yay for being different!
Click on thumbnails of Weezer to enlarge photos: