It is, indeed, so: Weezer’s ‘Blue Album’ turns 30

Geffen Records

Weezer‘s debut album is 30 years old.

Released on May 10, 1994, the originally self-titled effort became known as the Blue Album due to the hue of its cover artwork, setting up a tradition of color-themed self-titled records. It’s been certified triple Platinum by the RIAA and is cited as among the best and most influential records of the ’90s.

On the Blue Album, which was produced by The CarsRic Ocasek, frontman Rivers Cuomo filtered his love for bands ranging from KISS to The Beach Boys through the lens of more contemporary alternative bands like Nirvana and Sonic Youth, resulting in a collection of big guitar riffs and catchy pop hooks.

Singles included “Buddy Holly,” “Undone – The Sweater Song” and “Say It Ain’t So,” all of which became alternative radio hits. “Buddy Holly” was memorably accompanied by a video splicing Weezer in with footage from Happy Days, which won multiple MTV VMAs.

Weezer followed the Blue Album with 1996’s Pinkerton, which took a darker turn in both sound and lyrics, a change not welcomed by critics and the public. Pinkerton flopped commercially, and while it developed a cult following among fans, Cuomo was hurt by its perceived failure, and Weezer went on hiatus.

Weezer eventually returned in 2001 with the Green Album and has remained prolific since, bringing their discography to 15 full-length albums. Still, the Blue Album and Pinkerton era is often seen as a dividing line in Weezer history, with some fans feeling that the band never again reached the highs of those records. That argument even inspired a Saturday Night Live sketch.

Weezer will celebrate the Blue Album‘s 30th anniversary on a U.S. tour, which kicks off in September.

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