In one’s lifetime, there are those bands that stay with you forever — timeless, memorable, forever giving you a sense of nostalgia. Now, imagine you’re sitting in your seat at a venue waiting for those same bands to play live. It’s an anxious experience. You’re at the edge of your seat, staring at the black cloth that covers the stage, and your heart is racing. This is what it’s like to see Weezer.
On Aug. 7, Weezer and Pixies joined together to co-headline a concert at Shoreline Amphitheatre. Their collaboration proved to be a success — the majority of the attendees arrived at the venue wearing both Weezer and Pixies merchandise. It seemed as though most of the attendees were in fact fans of both bands, and there was no doubt that the energy and excitement the audience exuded radiated throughout the entire evening.
The collaboration was not only a success, but it also positively impacted Weezer’s already well-anticipated set. Pixies’ set — which occured approximately 20 minutes prior to Weezer’s — had already set the bar high for the crowd’s energy and engagement. Shoreline Amphitheatre catered to what was almost a full house that night, with each person standing anxiously on their feet, waiting for the ultimate act.
While the excitement was invariable, the audience did display a diverse age range. There were older individuals, middle-aged couples, young adults and even children with their parents. One of the best sights of the night was watching two young boys bobbing their heads up and down during Weezer’s set while their parents danced around them.
Weezer introduced its set with “Buddy Holly.” The band committed to every song it performed — from the band members’ outfits to the set design, which, in the case of “Buddy Holly,” was reminiscent of the music video for the song. Throughout the set, Weezer mostly performed its biggest hits from Weezer (Blue Album), which allowed the audience to easily sing along with lead vocalist and guitarist Rivers Cuomo.
After the opening song, Weezer moved on with promising hits such as “Beverly Hills” and “Undone — The Sweater Song.” The band’s enthusiastic stage performance maintained the youth that the songs shared.
Weezer also gave fans who sat in farther seats a taste of a closer show in the middle of the set. Cuomo ran off the stage and disappeared into the midst of the crowd. Suddenly, he appeared in a captain suit and started to travel through the central aisle in the audience, waving a flag with the band’s iconic “W” logo. This pause away from the stage provided a proper break in the middle of Weezer’s set. Standing on a tall platform with an acoustic guitar in hand, Cuomo played a stripped-down version of “Island In The Sun” and a cover of “Take on Me” by a-ha. “Island of the Sun” definitely proved to be a hit for the crowd that night, as it sang part of the second verse while Cuomo watched.
While all in all a riveting show, it would have been interesting to hear the artists from a band like Weezer speak briefly about the creation of certain songs and what they mean to the band members. Cuomo did not hesitate to banter with and check in on the audience every once in a while, but there remained a missed opportunity for more dialogue.
Ultimately, what makes Weezer such a great band and an even better live performer is the substance and consistency the band’s music has maintained over the past two decades. Throughout the performance, it was evident that this band’s existence has become an influential part of fans’ lives, and possibly the lives of those fans’ children. Who knows — maybe one of those kids may write their own “In the Garage” about their garage, just as Weezer did.