Daily Targum interview with Karl Koch - May 3, 2004
And that's for a-all time...
From the ingenious Happy Days send-up of 1994's "Buddy Holly" to the sumo-wrestling romp of 2000's "Hash Pipe," Weezer has put together some of the most hilarious and innovative music videos in recent pop history.
So it would basically seem like a no-brainer to compile all of their delightfully wacky clips onto one DVD, right?
Right. But Karl Koch had a bigger goal.
Over the last 10 years or so, Koch - a longtime friend of the band who also serves as the webmaster of weezer.com - had collected a treasure trove of candid video footage following the nerdy quartet from their humble beginnings to pop-rock stardom. After editing it all into a tidy compilation, Geffen released Video Capture Device - an entertaining collection of videos, studio clips, and live performances that essentially serves as a virtual history of of all things Weezer.
"No one wants a free-for-all when it comes to [what goes on] behind the scenes," Koch says of the DVD, released in March. "But this is how I know the band. A lot of this is stuff that only I have seen before. This is a way to give the fans more of a taste [of the band]. There's little explanation involved."
The DVD is actually part of the band's 10-year anniversary, which their insanely rabid fan base is celebrating with pride considering that many rock critics wrote them off as a novelty act after the release of self-titled debut in May of 1994.
"I think it was that kids really identified emotionally with the band," Koch says of the band's ability to remain relevant. "These guys were underdogs to them. And [their songs] were heartfelt. They also had a sing-along feel to them; even a kind of nickelodeon style. They had a lot of college fans, but there were also like 10- and 11-year-olds [wanting] the album for Christmas after seeing 'Buddy Holly' on MTV."
Next the band will turn the attention to finishing up their fifth album with famed producer Rick Rubin (Run-D.M.C., Beastie Boys, Red Hot Chilli Peppers). Though Koch says that most of it hasn't be recorded yet, the record should released sometime next winter.
"It's just like a lot of demos [right now]," Koch says. "They just started recording in December, and I'm not even sure how much they will use of what they have now. I do know the guys and their intentions. I know their attitude and feeling about it. There's no way to categorize it. In terms of what they want - sound- and structure-wise - it sounds a lot like The Blue Album [the alternate name for the band's debut record.] I mean, it's 10 years later and there's no way to re-create that, but it sounds most like that album. It's not going to be a retro-type of thing, though. That's not the goal."
Koch also adds that despite recent speculation, Matt Sharp - Weezer's original bassist (and falsetto vocalist) - has not rejoined the band's lineup.
"What really has been going down is that Matt and [lead vocalist/guitarist Rivers Cuomo] are back in touch with each other," Koch says of the pair's relationship, which has been up in arms after Sharp left the band in 1997. "They're on good terms again. They've had some practices together and have written some songs. I think that maybe they were talking about making an album together or Rivers would help Matt with his next solo album. But there's no talk of Matt rejoining the band."
As for now, Koch says that Weezer is simply looking forward to the next 10 years.
"They're four really smart guys," he explains. "They want to work for a long time. They've grown up. Who's to say what's going to happen next. They're more musically mature now. They're more on the same page than they used to be. It doesn't really matter how long it takes them to record. They have the right attitude now. They want to do it right."