OK Human

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OK Human is the upcoming fourteenth studio album by Weezer. It will be released on January 29, 2021.

OK Human
Studio album by Weezer
Released January 29, 2021
Recorded January 2019 - November 2020
Label Crush Music/Atlantic Records
Producer Jake Sinclair
Weezer chronology
Weezer (The Black Album)
(2019)
OK Human
(2021)
Van Weezer
(2021)

Overview

Rivers Cuomo first confirmed the album's existence to Zane Lowe in January of 2019. Said Cuomo: "Our next album is not on the grid, we’ve just recorded the basic tracks there’s no click, no grid. We don’t have a real title, but the key word we have to inspire us at the moment is ‘masterpiece’. It’s produced by Jake Sinclair who did the White Album."

Rivers Cuomo first mentioned the album's working title "OK Human" in an interview with Los Angeles Times published on February 22, 2019, about a week before the release of The Black Album. Cuomo described the album as "piano-based, very eccentric, with strings already recorded at Abbey Road." Cuomo mentioned that his influences for the album were George Gershwin and Harry Nilsson (specifically, the album Nilsson Sings Newman). Cuomo also confirmed the existence of another project tentatively titled Van Weezer.

In a July 2019 interview by the music outlet All Things Loud, Brian Bell described the album as being "about technology and how it’s running our life". Said Bell:
OK Human is unlike anything I’ve ever heard, unlike any other type of music and unlike any Weezer music. In the bass, if you really broke it down to its common denominator, it still goes one, four, five in a major key for the most part. That’s very Weezer, that’s very Sweater Song, but it does it in more sophisticated ways.

In an interview with Spanish magazine MondoSonoro[1], Bell described the basis of the album as "a string section", and that the album would also feature acoustic guitars, a Hammond organ, and would sound very "airy and open". Bell also described the album as one of his favorite albums the band has made thus far. In an August 2019 interview with the Spanish blog Binaural, Bell confirmed that the album's string section was recorded before anything else, and suggested that Crush Management would prefer to release Van Weezer before OK Human.

On April 10, Rivers stated on the video conferencing platform Zoom that, at the time, the album was 75% complete. He followed this up by saying the album would likely not be released in 2020. On April 17, he explained the premise to a fan as "very much a day in the life of [himself], but from a very private place." In a Zoom conference on May 9, Cuomo opened by performing a cover of "Heart-Shaped Box" by Nirvana. Afterwards, Cuomo recalled being struck by the song's use of "tar pits" in its lyrics as he had, one day prior, recorded tracks for an OK Human song titled "La Brea Tar Pits". On May 14, Cuomo shared a photo via Snapchat of a studio, with visible sheet music titled "Dead Roses". On May 15, Cuomo confirmed in an interview with Mike Jones of the radio station DC101 that the string section was the first to be recorded for the album and that, at the time of the interview, only his piano parts were yet to be completed.

On August 13, Weezer announced that their currently planned release Van Weezer was being delayed further into May 2021.[2] They also hinted that songs from OK Human would release in the meantime, possibly signaling the release order of the two albums had been switched.[3]

On August 20, a Riverchat user asked Cuomo about 1984 by George Orwell, Cuomo revealed that there was a song on the album that referenced the novel. Rivers went on to quote lyrics from said song that referenced both 1984 and Herman Melville's Moby Dick in addition to Virginia Woolf's Mrs Dalloway.

On August 26, Rivers edited the album's Riverpedia page to include the song's title, "Rock My Audible". On October 1 through the streaming platform TikTok, Cuomo revealed that the band had a photo shoot earlier that day, later confirming it to be "for the OK Human artwork and the whole album cycle". On October 23, Cuomo replaced the song title "Rock My Audible" with the title "Grapes of Wrath" on the OK Human Riverpedia entry, implying that the track was renamed.

On November 16, Cuomo confirmed to users of Riverchat that the album was complete, adding that the radio mix for the first single was in the mixing process.

On November 27, Rivers told users of Riverchat that the song "Aloo Gobi" was on the album and contained part of a demo previously released as part of Alone XII: The EWBAITE Years. He also said there was no chance that a single would be released before the end of the year as "[the] music business shuts down after thanksgiving. And that's in a normal year." [4]

On November 29, Karl Koch confirmed that OK Human would be releasing before Van Weezer via a comment on the Weezer Fan Club Facebook page. However, he added it would not be releasing as soon as originally promised. [5][6]

On December 13, Karl stated during a Zoom call with the Weezer Fan Club that something "awesome" related to the album would be releasing in "the latter half of January" but did not clarify whether he was referring to the first single or the album itself. He also said that OK Human has "the coolest album art [he's] ever seen". [7]

On January 5, Rivers gave more info on the album to the users of Riverchat, [8][9] describing how the album's instrumentation shifted over time to include a full orchestra (as opposed to only strings, as initially conceived). He also confirmed that the album had more than 10 tracks. The same day, Barry Summers of the video production company Fantracks confirmed on Facebook that an upcoming "AR Sci Fi Movie Musical Adventure" based on OK Human would begin casting the following week, providing rough concept art for the video.

On January 10, a preorder page for the vinyl pressing of the album was discovered on the website for the UK record store chain HMV, with a given release date of January 29 [10]. The page was removed hours after it was discovered. On the same day, a post reviewing the album was found on a Hungarian blog [11] which reinforced the January 29 release date and implied that the album would have 12 tracks.

On January 12, several members of the Weezer Fan Club reported receiving 3½-inch floppy disks, mailed from a Los Angeles shipping center. The disks were labeled "Masterpiece" with the additional text: "Hi Human, open ReadMe.txt". The disks contained a photo of Rivers Cuomo's face superimposed over that of Bill Gates, as well as ASCII art by Joan G. Stark[12] and a website URL: http://everythingthatfeelssogoodisbadbadbad.com/ The URL led to a Spotify playlist including a track titled "ReadMe.txt" and attributed to "=m=asterpiece" consisting of a female synthesized voice reading a message (likely an allusion to the track "Fitter Happier" from Radiohead's OK Computer):

All my favorite songs are slow and sad
All my favorite people make me mad
Everything that feels so good is bad bad bad
All my favorite songs are slow and sad.
I don't know what's wrong with me

The first letter of each subsequent track on the playlist spelled out "OKHUMAN". The band's Twitter and Instagram promoted the playlist shortly thereafter with the message "Put a playlist together of all my favorite songs, enjoy!"[13]

Gallery

Known Track Titles

Considered for/Scrapped from final album:

Trivia

See also