[2 September 2000]
A tour featuring Dynamite Hack and Weezer may seem like the newer band hoping to ride the coat tails of the one who’s already formed a huge fan base. However, that wasn’t the case at Chicago’s Metro club when the newer group, Dynamite Hack, opened up with a high energy set before Weezer, who was a main influence on their latest recording.
Dynamite Hack is currently touring behind their Universal Records debut Superfast, a record with hard driving alternative tunes with a punk flavor mixed in. It’s safe to say they are on the same track as Weezer with their hopes to take the nation by storm and get plastered all over rock radio.
The four-piece band proved they were worthy to the bill as they opened up their set with the testosterone-driven “Slice of Heaven.” The band immediately earned the crowd’s respect and attention, despite the majority of the audience’s intense anticipation for Weezer.
A standout factor in the group’s set was their duel lead vocalists, Mark Morris, who also plays guitar, and Chad Robinson, the group’s bass player. The two traded off songs for 45 minutes, showcasing each of their abilities—Morris’ upbeat poppy style and Robinson’s hard hitting shouts. Other crowd pleasers included the humorous “Alvin,” the catchy “Switcheroo” and the silly “Wussypuff,” all from Superfast. The group’s best-known tune, a cover of Easy E’s “Boys- N- The Hood,” transforms the song into a more alternative styled lick. Despite the group’s unique take on the song, it translated poorly on stage. It seems as though the band wanted to quickly get through the parody and move on with their rock based set.
As the group closed out their portion of the show, even more excitement built for Weezer, who had last appeared in Chicago at the New World Music Theatre in 1997 on No Doubt’s Tragic Kingdom tour. The half-hour intermission seemed unbearable, as fans began chanting for Weezer to come out just a few minutes after Dynamite Hack gave their final bow.
Fans had every right to be excited to see the group. It’s been four years since their last studio album Pinkerton, and nearly six since their phenomenally successful self-titled debut. Weezer opened up to a frenzied sing a long to their mid-tempoed “My Name Is Jonas.” They followed suit with “El Scorcho,” the lead off single from Pinkerton.
The show was broken into three potions, an opening section of some of the band’s fan favorites from both albums, followed by a brief set of brand new material towards the middle. The group closed out the show with their more commercially successful tracks.
New songs like “Too Late to Try,” “Peace and Quiet,” and “No Other One,” will be a part of their upcoming album, and fans seemed to get into all of those yet unheard of tracks. It was during that new material, however, that the crowd was at somewhat of a lull, almost waiting to hear a song they recognized. Perhaps the group could have spaced the new material a bit more evenly throughout the set.
Weezer really let loose during the last portion of the show rolling through hits like “Say It Ain’t So,” “Undone,” and “Buddy Holly.” Their version of the first album’s “Only in Dreams” was particularly uplifting and was played with a renewed vigor. It was their closing track, “Surf Wax America” that was the real show stopper. The extended version of the track featured intense solos by each group members, accompanied by a controlled mosh pit out front.
Weezer left the crowd with renewed hope of hearing more new music from the band and the probable chance of them launching a larger scaled tour in the coming months. However, they could have given a lot more than a mere 75 minute set to a city that they hadn’t seen in almost four years.
Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/review/weezer/