When Weezer released the Blue Album back in 1994, Geffen only shipped 13 000 copies, assuming the album would flop since almost no publicity was made for it. Singer Rivers Cuomo and bassist Matt Sharp even wrote a list of people who would surely buy the album, coming up with more or less a hundred names. They sold 90 copies on the first week... But after 'Undone: the Sweater Song' was released as a single, sells hit a peak. Weezer ended up selling 3 million copies of the 'Blue album'. It became an alt-rock classic, thus justifying the release of this so-called "deluxe" edition.
A lot of people are not sure whether they should buy it or not. It's pretty expensive, especially in Canada. Let's go through it. First, the packaging. It's absolutely wonderful. It contains rare and beautiful pictures of the band, which are spread through the packaging itself and inside the 30-pages booklet. The booklet contains pictures of the band, hand-written lyrics to the songs of cd 1 and 2, an essay by Todd Sullivan about how he discovered the band and got them signed and finally detailed notes about all the b-sides featured on the second cd. The only dissapointment is the size of the pictures which are often pretty small.
There is not much to say about the actual Blue album. Everyone knows it's a masterpiece. So let's talk about the second cd. It contains b-sides, live tracks, demos and unreleased songs from the era. Some of these had already been released on compilations, soundtracks or leaked on the internet, but it's nice to have them all on one cd with a slightly improved sound quality. Listening to this cd from beginning to end really gives you a new, insightful look at the album. It's really, really interesting, and some of the songs are actually really good (see "No One Else" acoustic version, "Paperface" and b-sides "Mykel and Carli", "Jamie" and "Susanne"). Demo versions of album tracks also offer an interesting approach at known classics.
Still, fans do know that a lot of available material from the era was left out. Where are the remaining Kitchen Tapes recordings? Or the original Weezer demo tape? Why was the Karl Koch essay not included in the booklet? Questions will always remain unanswered, making this deluxe edition more an interesting complement than the treasure chest it could've been.