[31 August 2010]
In this music industry age of falling sales and constant searching for new business models, is it still possible for bands to be considered sellouts?
In some circles, apparently so. Weezer raised a lot of questions by naming its upcoming album “Hurley” and its cover featuring only a picture of actor Jorge Garcia — yes, Hurley, from “Lost.”
“We struggled super hard trying to come up with an album title, trying to find some kind of phrase that summed up the whole aesthetic behind the album — ‘Heavy Mental,’ ‘Smaller Than Life,’” singer Rivers Cuomo told Spinner.com. “I was coming up with all kinds of stuff, but ultimately, we just went with some random word that doesn’t really have anything to do with anything. I just loved this photo of Jorge Garcia — it just had this amazing vibe. We didn’t want to do a fourth self-titled record and we knew people would refer to it as ‘the Hurley record’ even if left without that title, so we just called it ‘Hurley.”“
However, the band has since signed a deal with the Hurley clothing company to launch a Weezer fashion line of T-shirts and hoodies, available starting Sept. 10 in PacSun stores. That has led some to question the “Hurley” story. “Weezer misleads fans, sells out to Hurley International,” declares Hypebot.com, while other blogs call it product placement.
As “Hurley” marks Weezer’s move to indie label Epitaph Records after a long stay at Geffen, though, the question most fans are asking isn’t why the album’s named “Hurley,” but “Is it any good?”