The Beatles or The Stones? with Rivers Cuomo

Revolution or Satisfaction? Cuomo gives us the skinny
Revolution or Satisfaction? Cuomo gives us the skinny (Image credit: Brian Hineline/Retna Ltd./Corbis)

Yesterday, Weezer's Rivers Cuomo dropped some exciting news on us: a remastered, super-spiffy edition of the band's classic Pinkerton is on its way.

Responding to a question from MusicRadar reader The Rocker, Cuomo said, "We're going to be putting out a deluxe edition of Pinkerton, with some rarities added on. And probably a greatest hits CD, with even more bonus tracks. Lots of cool stuff to look forward to."

He even spoke humorously of his pre-Weezer tribute band past. Can you picture Cuomo as Swedish axe star Yngwie Malmsteen? True stuff.

Today we kick off a new series of interviews with a difference: your questions answered. Rivers Cuomo gamely took the hot seat for MusicRadar readers.

Freakboy says, The title and album cover of Raditude suggests that Weezer are in a more playful, relaxed mood than before. Is that true?

[laughs] "I don't know about the word 'relaxed.' I don't think we're ever relaxed. On the other hand…we're super-focused and…we're cool. Maybe that's 'relaxed.'

"The whole word 'Raditude' reflects our state of mind. It's the way we feel when we're pumped up and we hit the stage and we pull off these stunts that we never thought we could. That's Raditude for you."

Jack Krim asks, What do you consider Weezer's best record purely in sonic terms?

"In sonic terms? Hmmm. I guess it depends on what kind of mood I'm in. Sometimes I might want the really anarchic, chaotic emotional stuff, and that would be Pinkerton. Other times, I might want tight, hard pop like what's on our first album. And if I want genre-hopping, fun experimentation, then it would be Raditude.

"I don't like just one kind of sound, one kind of record. I guess that's what record collections are for." [laughs]

Next page: The Beatles or The Stones?

Storybook7 asks, If you could be in any band other than Weezer, who would it be and why?

"It'd be cool to be in Metallica for a week or two. I love those super-heavy riffs and I wouldn't mind playing them, but I think I'd want to come back to the melody of Weezer pretty soon."

Johnfranco888 wants to know if your song Only In Dreams came from a jam session or was it planned out?

"The main section, the verse and the chorus, was written by myself in my bedroom. Then we recorded the basic track in the studio. I wasn't really sure how the whole instrumental section would develop, but I had the guys lay down their parts individually.

"Pat Wilson put down this long drum build, then Matt [Sharp, Weezer ex-bassist] played the bass line. Slowly, I started putting guitars over it all and building it up. So it wasn't really a jam, but it wasn't planned out either."

Bucketheadrules wants to know, If you could play only one of your guitars for the rest of your life, which would it be?

"That's easy. My Les Paul Jr. I recorded most of our records with it. Love that guitar. It's a late-'50s model, probably a '58, I believe. It's totally stock; I haven't changed anything to it. It does everything I want."

And finally, MusicRadar asked Cuomo to weigh in on that all-important question: The Beatles or The Stones?

"The Beatles," Cuomo said quickly. "John Lennon is my favorite singer of all time. Plus, The Beatles have such great melodies. The Stones are alright, but they never did that much for me."

Keep it locked on MusicRadar as next week we'll continue our conversation with Rivers Cuomo, during which he'll discuss Weezer's upcoming album Raditude.

Buy Weezer and pre-order Raditude here: Amazon, HMV

Joe Bosso

Joe is a freelance journalist who has, over the past few decades, interviewed hundreds of guitarists for Guitar WorldGuitar PlayerMusicRadar and Classic Rock. He is also a former editor of Guitar World, contributing writer for Guitar Aficionado and VP of A&R for Island Records. He’s an enthusiastic guitarist, but he’s nowhere near the likes of the people he interviews. Surprisingly, his skills are more suited to the drums. If you need a drummer for your Beatles tribute band, look him up.