Cold and Damp

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"Cold and Damp"
Cold and Damp cover
Demo by Rivers Cuomo
Album Alone II
Released Officially Released
Recorded 1999
Length 3:37
Label Geffen
Writer(s) Rivers Cuomo
RC# 352
COR# 49
Producer(s) Rivers Cuomo
Status Released
Alone II track listing
"My Day Is Coming"
"Cold and Damp"
"I'll Think About You"
Rivers Cuomo song chronology
"Fits in the Blood"
(RC# 351)
"Cold and Damp"
(RC# 352)
(RC# 353)

"Cold and Damp" is the eighteenth track on Alone II: The Home Recordings of Rivers Cuomo.



"Cold and Damp" is an example of Cuomo's songwriting style that he calls "Arbitrary-Progression-Distortion-open-Strum-Intro-Melody-Arrange." In the liner notes for Alone II, Cuomo described the song as an attempt to de-personalize his songwriting.

Liner notes

Rivers Cuomo head.png
By the beginning of 1999, I had not managed to write any songs in which I felt any confidence, despite having devoted almost all of my time and energy to the effort since August, 1997. My band-mates each were pursuing other projects. Weezer's manager and record company rep stopped calling me regularly. Friends and family grew distant. I encouraged the space so that I could be alone. I determined that with enough concentration and effort, I could analyze my way out of the predicament I imagined myself to be in, the predicament of "poor songwriting". For the first time since I was a teenager, I now allowed myself to analyze my writing process in detail. I began to think of my writing sessions as experiments from which I could learn whether or not they turned out good. I disciplined myself to write a steady stream of these song-experiments, giving each a number, and keeping a log of my work called "The Catalog o' Riffs." I analyzed a large number of writing methods, varying what seemed to be every possible facet of the process: the order of the steps (guitar, melody, lyric, beat, riff, etc.); the tempo; the feel; the level of distortion on the guitar; whether I was composing aloud or in my head; the time of day; my emotional state; whether I had eaten or not; the number of drinks I had imbibed, if any. My goal was to ascertain the one method by which I could write the best songs.

The music I produced cycled through various styles, from extremely abrasive to light and folky, but in accord with my new post-Pinkerton values, almost none of the lyrics had any personal meaning. Many of the results appealed to me, but frustratingly, I did not feel satisfaction or confidence in any one of them for long. In the back of my mind, I kept thinking, maybe I should write a song with personal meaning–after all, that was what had always worked for me in the past (in the sense that it had generated songs that I loved). But the relatively low sales and critical reviews of the uber-personal Pinkerton convinced me that I had to learn to write songs that worked without personal meaning; I had to construct songs that were so compositionally perfect that no one could deny them. This was how I saw Nirvana's and Oasis's songs, the lyrics of which seemed largely impersonal and incomprehensible to me. So I kept trying.

Song experiment #49, utilizing method "Arbitrary-Progression-Distortion-open-Strum-Intro-Melody-Arrange", produced a somewhat Oasis-sounding song, with its loping bar chords and bluesy solo. "Cold And Damp" (Track 18)

The lyrics meant nothing to me on a conscious level. They just came out of my mouth automatically in reaction to the sound of the guitar chords. The melody I loved. Overall, the song had a strong appeal for me and I worked on it for quite a while.
- Rivers Cuomo,


Though the air is cold and damp
Yeah, still you want to go
And it's hard to celebrate so far
away from home
Gotta spend my days with you
Gonna make your dreams come true
But the air is cold and damp
Yeah, still you want to go

Your friends are laughing at you
They can keep you here
Your family hates the thought of
Baby dissappearin'

Gotta spend my days with you
Gonna make your dreams come true
But the air is cold and damp
Yeah, still you want to go
Making love at the eddy
Say goodbye to every day
So in love in emotion, satisfied in every way

See also