Weezerpedia Discord Q&A with Karl Koch - August 2022
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Hey Karl! I've been wondering this for years and I thought for sure with the 2020 Alone demos releasing in bulk, we'd finally get them but still nothing I could find.
Do you happen to know why basically the entire second half of Pinkerton is lacking in demos available to the public? Only the music that was carried over from Songs From The Black Hole exist in demo form. Tired of Sex through Why Bother. The SFTBH tracks that became B-sides too. Everything else seems to be completely absent in any Alone compilations or any other songs. Where's The Good Life, Across The Sea, Falling For You?
My current speculation is that they just simply weren't recorded as demos at any point, but were done in studio, which seems really unrealistic. Otherwise maybe there were some co-write grey areas that keeps Rivers from being able to release them? Or maybe they're just entirely lost.
Any information would be greatly appreciated!!
Edit: I do realize now after writing this that you can hear elements of El Scorcho in Simply State, like the guitar riff, though it's basically an entirely different song otherwise.
Karl: generally (subject to exceptions/modification) those later (written after RC started at Harvard) Pinkerton songs simply weren't recorded by RC on his own, he brought the ideas to the band and they played them, rehearsing them to the point of going to the studio and rocking out. I personally witnessed them learning "Falling For You" at Cole rehearsals in LA for example. "Pink Triangle" was definitely introduced to the band in Sound City. Keeping it raw was the spirit of the times, once they got into the proper pinkerton recording groove in '96. (the sessions at Electric Lady and Ft Apache in late summer 95 were of course partially salvaged and used, but the band really came into it once the Sound City sessions started in Jan 96). ....Now all that having been said - its entirely possible Rivers did do early demos of those "missing" ones on a handheld recorder etc while at Harvard, and that said primitive versions were later lost or are misplaced even today. I cant personally recall hearing them.... but then again for all i know ive got a cassette with some stuff on it. To be determined!
August 3, 2022 8:03 AM (#karlification)
justinhoenke: @Karlophone If you had a moment I would not mind hearing about how you heard the band learn "Falling For You" for the first time. Gosh dang what a moment in time that must have been.
Karl: my main memory is of sitting on the gross couch in the room at Cole Rehearsal and listening while doing some sort of packing or preparatory work (maybe we were about to move everything to Sound City), and hearing the "maybe I would rather settle down" part a few times, and thinking "this is like the Beatles in the best way but im not going to say anything lest i jinx this new song"
August 3, 2022 3:21 PM (#karlification)
cantankerous: I think early takes would be just as great as demos. I've read that those specific songs were mostly worked out in-studio (and that was just corroborated, obviously). Hearing the parts getting worked out would essentially be like listening to a demo, or as close as it gets. Hope some of that tape, if it exists, is released someday. That specific thing has been my holy grail for ages - the combination of incredible song quality and lack of info compared to most other weezer material is just so tantalizing!
Karl: there are no recordings of any pinkterton[sic] rehearsals, sadly. And a huge cache of cassettes of rough/unfinished dailies of the songs in progress was lost in the mail at the end of the summer of 96, or id have a better picture of the album in progress. But i do have some of those tapes, saved before that point.
August 3, 2022 3:23 PM (#karlification)
justinhoenke: This is so great to hear. Thanks for sharing this! Speaking of jinxing songs...I remember your story about "You Won't Get With Me Tonight" and how you said you jinxed that tune by saying it sounded similar to another tune out there. What tune was that?
Karl: lol "I shot the sheriff" Bob Marley (*this isnt new info, i revealed it on a forum somewhere some years ago)
August 5, 2022 7:18 AM (#karlification)
drewski (cardigan disaster): Do you know anything about the lost Pinkerton era song “Hello, Concubine”? Rivers revealed on his site that it’s being reworked into a song for SZNZ: Winter.
Karl: the title doesnt ring a bell. when i hear the SZNZ song ill know if i recognize it as something else (or a part of it etc). Again, there are very few pinkerton demos that werent eventually used
August 5, 2022 9:54 AM (#karlification)
dylan (HMC): Rivers pretty much said it was never even recorded. When he talked about it on Riverchat he was basically piecing it together from memory.
that makes sense then, like i said theres very little "undiscovered" pinkerton era recordings. its pretty cool he can remember the parts and/or wrote something down and saved it all this time
he hasd his notes and notations/sheet music with him when we went to the studio to rescue "tragic girl", so it makes sense theres more. I assume that stuff was not included in the pinkerton diaries (or was it...)
August 5, 2022 4:22 PM (#karlification)
eted: I'm not sure if this has been answered before, but as a common question within the fanbase— how much of Tragic Girl was recorded in 96 and how much did Rivers overdub in 09/10? The chorus vocals (cry and cry and let it out) definitely sound characteristic of his performances circa the early 10s, but there's been contention over which parts were from what era
Karl: i have addressed this in the past, but i forget when/where, so - 1. fix a solo that wasnt quite right, 2. double a small guitar part that was missing its double. 3. fill in one short lyric that was missing (it was in his sheet music but nearly illegible, and wasnt on the tape because he flubbed it back in '96. The cry and cry parts, and really 99% of the vocals and 98% of the guitars, are all 1996. but getting that missing 1% and 2% took 12 hours of work in the studio. It was a fun session, like an archaeological dig!
August 7, 2022 8:56 PM (#karlification)
eted: Oh wow, thank you for the response! I'm sure that was a fun session, sounds like it would be really cool to resurrect a song from years back. Now, my follow-up question is was the original 96 recording ever considered for release on Pinkerton Deluxe/do you think we'll ever hear it?
Karl: no - the original recording is what you hear on Pink deluxe - the original recording had those issues that were fixed in the 2009(?) session i was talking about. The missing bits were filled in and fixed. to hear it as it was before those fixes were made would simply be to hear it exactly the same but with the one flubbed vocal line and incomplete guitar solo.
August 8, 2022 7:13 AM (#karlification)
theangel: Please tell me this is Weezer merch
Karl: i wish! just something a fan gave us, after our '00 era digs at Creed
August 5, 2022 4:23 PM (#karlification)
theangel: There's a tweet that went viral recently with this image claiming that Weezer was supposed to co-headline a tour with Slipknot around the Maladroit era but the tour got cancelled early into the planning stages. Is there any truth to this?
Karl: as far as i know the photo is legit backstage hilarity, but the idea of said tour was never a serious notion. Im sure Rivers would have been thrilled by the idea then (and now lol)
August 9, 2022 8:18 AM (#karlification)
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