Never officially released, “Jamie” is one of Weezer’s stronger B-sides. What separates it from the rest is its simple yet unusual sound, typical of Weezer’s early music. While the lyrics are not Rivers Cuomo’s most enlightening work, they make “Jamie” catchy and easy to follow, while still conveying the message of the song. I don’t know why this song never made it to an album.
#9. Tired of Sex
Track #1 on “Pinkerton,” this song kick starts the album with an awesome sound, pumping you up for the next 9 songs. The band’s precision in controlling their feedback and using it to add to the song amazes me, especially in “Tired of Sex.” The song is built upon an awesome bass line, and the extra melodies laid overtop of it with vocals, guitars, and some kind of keyboard effect all strengthen the song considerably.
#8. No One Else
Track #2 on “Weezer” (“The Blue Album”), “No One Else” shows Weezer’s mastery of progression throughout a song. Every part seems to come in at the perfect time, and every part is nearly perfect in itself. The chord changes are slightly predictable, but far enough from typical to keep the song very interesting. Plus, the melodies and harmonies layered over the music make up for any dullness in the chords. Finally, the lyrics strike a subject not often heard in songs, namely Rivers’s “selfishness” with regards to his girlfriend.
#7. Undone (The Sweater Song)
Track #5 on “Weezer” (“The Blue Album”), and another very recognizable song right from the intro, “Undone (The Sweater Song)” is another example of Weezer’s ability to write a very simple chord progression and turn it into something far from typical. As catchy as it is, this song follows a slightly different formula from most Weezer songs, because of the overlapping lyrics during the chorus, which tell a story of sorts about teenage/young-adult social patterns.
#6. Across The Sea
Track #5 on “Pinkerton,” “Across the Sea” tells a story of a fan in Japan who has fallen in love with the singer. There is nothing very distinct about this song, as far as structure or sound, it just has a really good melody and an enthralling feel to it.
#5. Falling For You
Track #9 on “Pinkerton,” this song leaves you unsure whether you want to cry or scream, which ironically just ends up making you very happy. The emotions conveyed by Rivers’s singing, accented by the squealing guitar riffs in the background, make “Falling for You” one of Weezer’s best. The verses are relatively heavy, and the chorus is just rock solid.
#4. Pink Triangle
Track #8 on “Pinkerton,” “Pink Triangle” provides one of their most soothing melodies, yet retains the album’s hard and distorted sound. Rivers Cuomo’s variations of the melody throughout the song keep it very interesting, and the background guitar work compliments the singing flawlessly. The lyrics tell a story about falling in love with a lesbian – something I’m sure most guys can agree would be an unfortunate event.
#3. Only In Dreams
Track #10 on “Weezer” (“The Blue Album”), “Only in Dreams” gives a taste of something I only wish were on all of Weezer’s albums. Weezer perfected the art of building and building up to something powerful and then actually exceeding your expectations when the song hits its climax. Few bands can make an 8-minute song that leaves you wanting more, but Weezer is definitely one of them. “Only in Dreams” is an incredible blend of mellow, blues-style listening and flat-out hard rock. The lyrics describe a fantasy of sorts in such an artistic way that they, too, add to the surrealism of the song.
#2. El Scorcho
Track #7 on “Pinkerton,” “El Scorcho” is one of Weezer’s sillier songs, with Matt Sharp providing many fun, high-pitched background vocal parts. However, despite its playfulness, the song still grips you with its incredible energy and melody, and a killer bridge.
#1. Say it Ain’t So
Track #7 on “Weezer” (“The Blue Album”), this song is possibly the band’s most recognizable. As soon as you hear the slow, reggae-style chords, you are excited because you know how good the rest of the song will be. Once again, Weezer proves with this song just how good they are at adding more and more layers as the song progresses until the end leaves you begging for more. This song also contains one of my favorite guitar solos to be heard by Weezer.
It is unfair to limit this list to ten songs, since pretty much every song on Weezer’s first two albums is made of pure gold. However, these are my ten favorites if I had to choose – at least as of right now.