Film Crit Hulk Smash: HULK SMASHES THE PUNY PARADIGMS OF FILM CRITICISM WITH HULK-SIZED SEMIOTICAL ESSAYS ON STORYTELLING, CINEMATIC PRINCIPLES, AND MEDIA THEORY! HULK EVEN MAKE PRACTICAL HOW-TO GUIDES! See More...

Film Crit Hulk Smash: HULK VS WHAT THE F@%^ REALLY HAPPEN TO WEEZER?

Film Crit Hulk thinks he knows why Weezer's post-Pinkerton output is not so smashing.

Film Crit Hulk Smash: HULK VS WHAT THE F@%^ REALLY HAPPEN TO WEEZER?

1.

MUSIC IS ABOUT HARMONY.

TO SOME OF YOU, THAT MAY SOUND LIKE THE MOST OBVIOUS STATEMENT IN THE WORLD. BUT THE TRUTH IS THAT MOST PEOPLE DON'T REALIZE OR EVEN THINK ABOUT IT. MUSIC IS JUST SOMETHING THEY HEAR AND THEY INTRINSICALLY KNOW THEIR RESPONSE. IT'S ALMOST PURELY VISCERAL. AND PERHAPS THAT'S NATURAL. AFTER ALL, WHEN THE (PUNY) HUMAN BRAIN PROCESSES MUSIC IT OFTEN CAN ONLY REMEMBER/REGURGITATE THE MELODY FIRST, WHICH IS OFTEN THE WAY WE DEFINE THINGS. LIKE  OUTWARD APPEARANCES, IT SPEAKS TO HULK'S ONGOING FASCINATION WITH "THE TANGIBLE DETAILS." WE VIEW THE WORLD IN SURFACES.

BUT THE TRUTH IS THAT A MELODY BY ITSELF CAN ALSO BE A STRANGELY HOLLOW THING. MUSIC NEEDS MORE THAN THAT. IT NEEDS TO BE GROUNDED. IT NEEDS TO BE FELT. IT NEEDS TO RESONATE.

WHICH MEANS THAT MUSIC IS ALWAYS DEPENDENT ON THE INTERPLAY OF SOUND; AN ARRANGEMENT OF DIFFERENT NOTES, HAPPENING SIMULTANEOUSLY, THAT ULTIMATELY BIND TOGETHER TO BECOME SOMETHING MORE DENSE AND COMPELLING. JUST AS NOTES COMBINE TOGETHER TO MAKE A CHORD. YOU NEED HARMONY TO CREATE TEXTURE. YOU NEED HARMONY FOR RESONANCE.

WEEZER FRONTMAN RIVERS CUOMO HAS EARNED A LIFETIME OF PRAISE AND GLORY BECAUSE HE IS ONE OF THE BETTER MELODY WRITERS ON THE PLANET.

... BUT MATT SHARP WAS THE ONE WHO GAVE THEM HARMONY.

2.

YES, HULK ATTEMPTING TO WRITE ABOUT MUSIC... BE GENTLE.

3.

ONE OF HULK'S GOOD FRIENDS WORKS IN PROFESSIONAL FOOTBALL. HE AN INSATIABLY SMART GUY. HE, LIKE HULK, IS SOMEONE OBSESSED WITH SYSTEMIC THINKING. HE APPLIES THIS KIND OF THINKING TO WATCHING GAME FILM ALL THE TIME. ONE WEEK THERE WAS AN OPPONENT WHO HAD REMARKABLE SUCCESS WITH THEIR TOP FLIGHT WIDE-RECEIVER. IT WAS HULK'S FRIENDS' JOB TO FIGURE OUT JUST HOW IN THE HELL THIS ONE GUY WAS GETTING OPEN SO OFTEN. WAS THIS RECEIVER JUST THAT GOOD? HULK'S FRIEND WATCHED THE TAPE AGAIN AND AGAIN AND THEN HE FINALLY FIGURED IT OUT. EVERY FEW PLAYS OR SO THE OPPONENT WOULD USE WHAT'S KNOWN AS DOWN-FIELD CROSS SCREEN, MEANING A TIGHT END, TACKLE, OR EVEN ANOTHER RECEIVER WOULD GO  IN MOTION TO MAKE AN UNCHARACTERISTIC DOWN-FIELD-BLOCK/OBSTRUCTION FROM THE DEFENDER'S BLIND SIDE. THUS, THE TOP-FLIGHT RECEIVER WOULD GET JUST THAT LITTLE BIT OF NEEDED SEPERATION WITH ASTOUNDING REGULARITY. THE REASON IT WASN'T NOTICED BEFORE WAS BECAUSE IT WAS ALWAYS HIDDEN IN VARIOUS PLAY PACKAGES, WITH SOMEONE NEW MAKING THE OBSTRUCTION. IN OTHER WORDS, THEY WERE HIDING THE SAME MECHANISM OVER AND OVER AGAIN IN PLAIN SIGHT, JUST WITH A DIFFERENT SURFACE. ALL THE OTHER COACHES TRIED TO FIGURING IT OUT BY LOOKING AT WHAT KIND OF ROUTES THE RECEIVER WAS RUNNING OR IF THE QUARTERBACK WAS TIPPING IT IN ANYWAY, NOT WHAT MIGHT BE HAPPENING IN THE LARGER PLAY STRUCTURE. THEY WERE DRAWN TO THE TANGIBLE DETAILS FIRST.

THERE ARE A LOT OF LESSONS IN THIS STORY, BUT THE ONE HULK WANTS YOU TO TAKE AWAY IS THIS: SOMETIMES,ONE PERSON PERFECTLY DOING THEIR JOB IN THE BACKGROUND IS WHAT ALLOWS ANOTHER STAR PERSON TO GET THE ATTENTION. AND THIS INVISIBLE PERFORMANCE OF ONE'S DUTY CAN BE RESPONSIBLE FOR AN ENTIRE TEAM'S SUCCESS.

4.

YOU PROBABLY KNOW THAT HULK LIKES TO STAY AWAY FROM THE WHOLE AWESOME/SUCKS CULTURAL DYNAMIC, SO PLEASE KNOW THAT HULK IS NOT TRYING TO IMPLY THAT WEEZER SUCKS NOW.

THEY'RE FINE.

BUT FOR HULK AND A GOOD DEAL OF OTHERS IT'S JUST SORT OF OBVIOUS THAT THEIR POST-PINKERTON OUTPUT HAS FAILED TO TRULY RESONATE IN THE SAME WAY. HULK KNOW THERE'S STILL A LOT OF FOLKS THAT ARE STILL DEVOTED TO THE BAND, AND AGAIN, THAT'S FINE. BUT IT'S HARD FOR HULK NOT TO ACKNOWLEDGE THAT THEY WENT FROM RELEASING TWO OF THE MOST ENGAGING ALT-ROCK RECORDS HULK HAS EVER HEARD, TO RELEASING A LONG STRING OF WHAT CAN BEST BE CATEGORIZED AS EASILY-DIGESTIBLE POWER-POP.  HULK MEAN, THERE'S AN OBVIOUS REASON THOSE ORIGINAL SONGS HAVE ENDURED FOR 20  YEARS, WHILE THE REST HAVEN'T AT ALL... THE REASON BEING THE SONGS  AREN'T AS GOOD.  AND HULK KNOWS COULD ARGUE ABOUT SOME OF THE GOOD SONGS THAT SEEPED THROUGH THE CRACKS ALL DAY, BUT HULK DOESN'T WANT TO GET INTO THAT GAME.

SO FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS ARTICLE CAN WE JUST AGREE THAT THERE IS BASIC SENSE OUT THERE THAT WEEZER IS NOT AS GOOD AS THEY ONCE WERE? IS THAT OKAY TO SAY? BECAUSE WE REALLY NEED TO MOVE ON... COOL.

SO THE REAL QUESTION OF WEEZER'S WORSENING BECOMES, "WHAT THE FUCK HAPPENED?"

WHEN YOU PRESS PEOPLE FOR THE REASONS YOU GET A WHOLE BUNCH OF THEORIES, SOME OF WHICH BORDER ON OUTRIGHT CONSPIRACY. UNDERSTANDABLY, PEOPLE ARE JUST CREATING TRYING AN EMOTIONAL STORYLINE THAT MAKES SENSE. MOST PEOPLE CITE RIVERS' INFAMOUS POST-PINKERTON BREAKDOWN. THE ONE WHERE HE WAS SO DISAPPOINTED WITH THE PUBLIC REACTION TO THE RECORD (WHICH OF COURSE HAS SINCE BEEN CORRECTED TO THE POINT WHERE IT IS PROPERLY REVERED AS AN ALL TIME GREAT) THAT HE STARTED LIVING LIKE A HERMIT AND PAINTED ALL HIS WINDOWS BLACK.... YEAH, SUCH THINGS WILL WILL HAVE AN IMPACT. WORSE, THERE'S THE RUMOR THAT HE SWORE HE'D NEVER WRITE A TRULY PERSONAL SONG AGAIN. AND THOSE ARE JUST THE MAIN THEORY. ALL SORTS OF OTHER IDEAS FLOAT AROUND INCLUDING VARIOUS BREAKUPS WITH A LIST OF IMAGINARY GIRLFRIENDS. OR HIS STINT IN HARVARD. THE ABRUPT DEPARTURE MIKEY WELSH. NAME A REASON, IT'S PROBABLY BEEN THEORIZED.

BUT THE REAL ANSWER IS INGENIOUSLY SIMPLE IN THAT MATT SHARP STOPPED WRITING THEIR BASS-LINES.

5.

MOST PEOPLE DON'T REALLY LISTEN TO MUSIC FOR INDIVIDUAL INSTRUMENTS.

AND AGAIN, WHY WOULD THEY? THERE'S THE ATTENTION GRABBING MELODY AFOOT! AND EVEN IF EVERY SINGLE INSTRUMENT TOTALLY HAS JUST AS MUCH TO DO WITH THE END EFFECTS OF HARMONY, THERE'S JUST NO REAL EMOTIONAL REASON TO LISTEN FOR A SINGLE INSTRUMENT... UNLESS YOU'RE INTERESTED IN ACTUALLY DOING SO.

THAT'S WHERE HAVING ANY KIND OF MUSIC BACKGROUND COMES IN. IF YOU'VE EVER PLAYED AN INSTRUMENT (EVEN BADLY) SOMETIMES THAT INSTRUMENT I'S ALL YOU'LL HEAR IN A SONG. A DRUMMER HEARS THE DRUMS. A PIANIST HEARS THE PIANO. YADA, YADA, YADA. IT'S ALL KINDA NATURAL. IT'S ALSO FOR THIS REASON THAT IF YOU WANT TO KNOW WHO ARE THE TRULY GREAT GUITAR PLAYERS OF ALL TIME, YOU'D DO BEST TO ASK ACTUAL GUITAR PLAYERS... HULK, HEARS JEFF BECK A LOT.

AND WHEN YOU ASK PEOPLE WHO KNOW ABOUT GREAT BASS PLAYERS, THEY TEND TO MENTION MATT SHARP.

6.

DO HULK A FAVOR.

NEXT TIME YOU LISTEN TO THE BLUE ALBUM AND PINKERTON, ONLY LISTEN TO BASS-LINES. SERIOUSLY. TRUST HULK ON THIS ONE. AND NOT JUST THE POINTS WHERE THE BASS COMES TO FOREFRONT IN SOMETHING AWESOME LIKE "ONLY IN DREAMS," LISTEN TO THE ENTIRETY OF BASS LINES FOR BOTH RECORDS.

SUDDENLY, YOU HEAR SOMETHING NEW. IT'S LIKE THERE ARE ENTIRELY DIFFERENT SONGS AND RHYTHMS LAYERED UNDERNEATH IT ALL. AND ALL THESE SONGS (WHOSE MELODIES YOU KNOW SO WELL) SUDDENLY FEEL COMPLETELY NEW AND THERE ARE WHOLE OTHER SONGS PLAYING WITH IT.

WHAT YOU'RE ESSENTIALLY HEARING, IS WEEZER'S DEEP, RAGING, PROPULSIVE HARMONY. THE FIRST TIME YOU LISTEN LIKE THIS IS  KIND OF A MAGICAL EXPERIENCE, WHERE YOU'RE HEARING THE KEY INGREDIENT OF THE MUSIC FOR THE FIRST TIME. IT'S AMAZING HOW MUCH YOU REALIZE THERE IS SO MUCH TO WEEZER BEYOND THE "DOO-DOO-DOO" OF WHATEVER LITTLE MELODY HAS BEEN STUCK IN YOUR HEAD FOR YEARS.

THEN DO HULK ANOTHER FAVOR.

LISTEN TO BASS-LINES IN ALL THE WEEZER ALBUMS AFTER THOSE TWO INITIAL ONES... YOU WILL NOTICE THAT THE BASS-LINES PRETTY MUCH DISAPPEAR INTO THE MELODY.

THAT'S MATT SHARP DIDN'T WRITE THEM. HE WROTE EVERY SINGLE BASS LINE ON BLUE ALBUM AND PINKERTON (MIKEY WELSH IS OFTEN CREDITED WITH BEING THE BASSIST DURING THE PINKERTON RECORDING. THIS IS FALSE. HE CAME ON BOARD SOON AFTER FOR THE ACTUAL TOUR... WELSH ALSO HAS A HORRIBLY SAD STORY). BUT SHARP WAS THE SECRET ARRANGEMENT/HARMONY WIZARD BEHIND THOSE UNFORGETTABLE RECORDS.

... BUT SHARP WAS ALSO FAMOUSLY CRITICAL OF CUOMO. HE WAS SO QUICK TO TEAR APART AND AUGMENT HIS WORK. TO BUILD IT AWAY FROM THE MELODY AND SET IT INTO A MORE-FUNCTIONAL HARMONY. CUOMO BASICALLY WANTED TO MAKE KISS RECORDS (AND HAS SINCE GONE ON TO DO THE NERDY VERSIONS OF THEM IF YOU THINK ABOUT IT). BUT THINK ABOUT WHAT SHARP BROUGHT: THE MESSY CHAOS AND NOISE LAYERED INTO THOSE SOUNDS. THINK ABOUT THE CHAOS OF THE BAND'S FIRST HIT "UNDONE (THE SWEATER SONG)." IT SUDDENLY MAKES SENSE. BUT SO MUCH SO THAT THIS DESTRUCTIVE (YET PRODUCTIVE) CREATIVE PROCESS TOOK A TOLL ON THE RELATIONSHIP AND WAS ULTIMATELY RESPONSIBLE FOR SHARP LEAVING THE GROUP.

STILL, THERE IS NO WAY TO DENYING THAT SHARP WAS NOT ONLY FUNDAMENTAL TO THE CONSTRUCTION OF WEEZER'S ORIGINAL SOUND, HE'S TRULY WHAT ELEVATED THEM INTO THE STRATOSPHERE.

7.

WHEN YOU GET RIGHT DOWN TO IT, EVERY BASSIST HAS TO MAKE ONE OF TWO ESSENTIAL DECISIONS.

ASIDE FROM THE RARE SONG OF FEATURE (LIKE THE AFOREMENTIONED "ONLY IN DREAMS"), A BASSIST CAN EITHER AMP UP THE POINTS OF THE MAIN GUITAR RIFF TO GIVE IT TEXTURE AND, YOU KNOW, BASS... OR THEY CAN RUN COUNTER TO THE RIFF AND HIGHLIGHT NOTES NOT BEING PLAYED. MEANING THEY CAN USE THE BASS TO WRITE HARMONY.

SADLY, AMPING UP THE MAIN GUITAR RIFF IS WHAT MOST BANDS DO. IT'S JUST EASIER. YOU BASICALLY PICK THE HIGHLIGHT NOTES OF A RHYTHM AND THEN PLAY IN CONJUNCTION. WHAT IT LACKS IN HARMONIZING IT MAKES UP FOR IN... UM... SOUNDING DEEPER? YEAH, BASICALLY. DON'T GET HULK WRONG, IT REALLY DOES FILL OUT THE SOUND, BUT IT'S NOT TURNING THE MUSIC INTO SOMETHING DYNAMIC (MOST BANDS RELY ON OTHER INSTRUMENTS TO TRY AND DO THAT, MISSING A REAL OPPORTUNITY IF YOU ASK HULK... AND IN CASE YOU CAN'T TELL, HULK HAS PLAYED A LOT OF BASS GUITAR).

BUT RUNNING COUNTER TO THE RIFF IS DIFFICULT. THERE'S A REAL ART TO AND YOU ABSOLUTELY NEED AN INTRINSIC SENSE OF SONG WRITING THAT... WELL... MOST PEOPLE JUST DON'T HAVE. HULK MEAN YOU CAN BE AN INCREDIBLE TECHNICIAN AND ALL, BUT IF YOU DON'T IMPLICITLY UNDERSTAND THE WAY NOTES SHAPE TOGETHER TO CREATE NEW SOUNDS THEN YOU'D JUST BE FIDDLING AROUND FOR UNTIL THE END OF TIME LOOKING FOR SOMETHING "THAT SOUNDS GOOD TOGETHER."

SO IF YOU'VE EVER MET SOMEONE WITH THE ABILITY TO NOT ONLY WRITE MUSIC, BUT ARRANGE IN HARMONY IT'S REALLY SOMETHING ELSE. IT'S LIKE WATCHING A MATHEMATICIAN SOLVE A PROOF YOU CAN BARELY EVEN UNDERSTAND (LET ALONE SOLVE). THEY SEE THOSE UNSEEN CONNECTIONS. IT FEELS LIKE MAGIC. AND THE RESULT IS A KIND OF MUSICAL RESONANCE THAT IS UNMATCHED.

CURRENT WEEZER BASSIST SCOTT SHRINER IS A TALENTED, SUPER NICE GUY. AND WHO KNOWS MAYBE HE CAN DO IT, BUT IS PREVENTED FROM REALLY DOING MORE. ALL HULK KNOWS IS THAT HULK HAS LISTENED TO HIS ENTIRE OUTPUT WITH THE BAND AND SAVE FOR THE OCCASIONAL MOMENT OF HIGHLIGHT, THE BASS NEVER TRIES RUN COUNTER.

THE HARMONY IS MISSING.

8.

HAVE YOU EVER HEARD OF THE RENTALS?

IF YOU LIKE WEEZER HOPEFULLY YOU'VE HEARD OF THEM. AND THAT'S BECAUSE THEY ARE THE BAND THAT MATT SHARP STARED AFTER HE LEFT WEEZER... AND, WELL... ACTUALLY SCREW THE EXPLANATION. JUST LISTEN TO THIS:

THIS IS A SONG BY THE RENTALS CALLED MY SUMMER GIRL:

YUP... IT SOUNDS EXACTLY LIKE STRIPPED-DOWN EARLY WEEZER.

NOTE THE WAY THE LIGHT, MESSY GUITAR RIFF COMES IN AND THEN SHARP LAYS INTO IT WITH THAT DISTORTED BASS SOOOOO LOUDLY. IT COMPLETELY OVERPOWERS THE GUITAR RIFF, BUT SOMEHOW COMPLIMENTS IT EXACTLY. THE TWO ACTUALLY SOUND GREAT TOGETHER.

NOW, LET'S HAVE MORE FUN:

IT'S FUCKING UNCANNY, RIGHT?

NO RIVERS COUMO, BUT IT STILL SOUNDS ALMOST EXACTLY LIKE WEEZER! HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE? EXACTLY WHAT HULK HAS BEEN TALKING ABOUT. IT'S MISSING THOSE PERFECT, MELODIOUS HOOKS CUOMO HAS IN SPADES, BUT THIS REVELATION IN WHAT YOU'RE HEARING IS ALL ABOUT THE POWER OF HARMONY. WHAT MATT SHARP BROUGHT TO THE TABLE IS THE ACTUAL "TEXTURE" OF THE BAND'S EARLY WORK. AND THOSE MESSY, FRANK ARRANGEMENTS ARE SECRETLY WORTH MORE THAN ALL THE NEAT MELODIES CUOMO COULD EVER WRITE.

LET'S PROVE WITH MORE:

AT THIS POINT IT ALSO FAIR TO NOTE THAT MATT SHARP'S VOICE JUST ISN'T NEARLY AS GOOD AS CUOMOS. HULK MEAN, HE MAKES IT WORK AND ALL, BUT YEAH... IT'S  MISSING COUMO'S HYPER-DISTINCTIVE WAIL AND PITCH. AND LET'S FACE IT, SOMETHING ABOUT CUOMO'S VOICE JUST RINGS IN OUR EARS. HE'S GOT A GREAT, DISTINCT ROCK VOICE THAT INSTANTLY COMMUNICATES HIS IDENTITY. AND HULK SORRY, BUT IT TOTALLY ONE OF THOSE THINGS THAT ALL THE TRULY GREAT BANDS BOTH HAVE AND NEED TO GET THERE.

BUT LET'S NOT SELL SHARP SHORT OR ANYTHING. IN FACT, LET'S NOTICE ANOTHER THING ABOUT HIS VOICE:

NOTICE THE FALSETTO BACKING THAT SOUNDS LIKE EARLY WEEZER? YUP. THAT'S MATT'S VOICE. HE DID THAT ALL THE TIME ON THOSE ORIGINAL WEEZER SONGS. DOESN'T IT SOUND SO WONDERFULLY FAMILIAR TO US NOW? IT'S LIKE WE REALIZE THAT WEEZER TRULY LOST A CO-SINGER.

YOU'VE PROBABLY HAD ENOUGH RENTALS AT THIS POINT, BUT... SCREW IT, LET'S KEEP GOING DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE:

ISN'T THAT A FUN SONG? WEEZER STILL SEEMS TO HAVE FUN, BUT IT SEEMS LIKE SUCH A MORE HOLLOW VERSION OF IT.

9.

BUT SHARP'S GENIUS ISN'T JUST LIMITED TO THE RENTALS. AT TIMES HE COMES OFF LIKE A MUSICAL ZELIG (WHICH HULK REALIZES IS JUST A ZELIG). BUT HE HAD A NICE LITTLE STINT HELPING OUT GOLDENBOY. AND HE PRODUCED SOME/ PLAYED KEYS/BASS ON TWO OF TEGAN AND SARA'S LANDMARK ALBUMS "SO JEALOUS" AND "THE CON."

YUP. SHARP TOTALLY COLLABORATED WITH TWO OTHER AWESOME BANDS DURING THEIR BEST WORK.

THERE'S A LOT OF WAYS ONE COULD CREDIT THIS, BUT LET'S JUST WRAP IT UP INTO ONE BIT OF SIMPLICITY AND SAY THAT SHARP JUST A HAVE A GREAT EAR FOR COMPOSITION.

10.

SO, IF, LIKE, THEY WERE A PERFECT MATCH WHY THE HELL DID SHARP LEAVE WEEZER ANYWAY?

THE SIMPLE ANSWER IS WHO THE HECK KNOWS. HULK IS DEEPLY AWARE THAT THERE'S A NUANCED STORY TO JUST ABOUT EVERYTHING. MAYBE SHARP IS AN IMPOSSIBLE PERSON TO WORK WITH. MAYBE HE'S THE NICEST GUY IN THE WORLD AND GETS BULLIED OUT BANDS FOR CARING TOO MUCH ABOUT ARRANGEMENT. AND HULK COULD GET INTO ALL THE HE SAID, SHE SAID OF HIS WEEZER DEPARTURE (AT ONE POINT IN 2004 THEY ATTEMPTED A SMALL REUNION... DIDN'T GO SO WELL DUE TO WHAT SHARP CALLED "THEIR SPECIAL BRAND OF DYSFUNCTION"). BUT THE POINT IS TO GET INTO THIS WOULD BE JUST AS MUCH CONJECTURE AS ANYTHING. ON A PERSONAL LEVEL IT JUST DIDN'T WORK. THAT'S ALL WE REALLY HAVE TO KNOW.

BUT THERE'S NO DENYING THE PROFESSIONAL RESULTS. LIKE LENNON AND MCCARTNEY, SOME PEOPLE ARE JUST BORN TO MAKE MUSIC TOGETHER... EVEN IF THEY CAN'T STAND IT. AND HERE WERE TWO PEOPLE WHO WERE DESTINED TO MAKE MUSIC TOGETHER IN HULK'S MIND.

CUOMO WAS THE MELODY. HE GOT THE GLORY AND MADE AN ODDLY PERFECT FRONTMAN FOR A GROUP THAT CAME TO SYMBOLIZE SO MUCH NERDOM (A CULTURE THAT WOULD EXPLODE JUST A DECADE LATER ODDLY ENOUGH).

AND SHARP WAS THE HARMONY. HE MADE THE MUSIC RESONATE AND BE FELT DEEPLY IN YOUR BONES. HE PROVIDED THAT FALSETTO AND THAT DELIRIOUS SENSE OF FUN. AND HE NEVER REALLY GOT CREDIT.

AND NOW THAT THEY'VE SEPARATED?

CUOMO HAS GONE ON TO EMBODY WHAT MELODY MEANS WHEN IT'S ALONE. IT GLARES AND HAS NOTICE, BUT IT REMAINS A HOLLOW EXERCISE IN TEMPORARY AFFECTATION. IT JUST DOESN'T RESONATE.

AND SHARP HAS GONE ON TO EMBODY HARMONY ALONE. IT'S GREAT, BUT SOMEHOW THERE'S NO DISTINGUISHING HOOK TO PULL YOU IN. IT CAN'T GET NOTICED... PEOPLE CAN BARELY EVEN SEE IT.

11.

NOW IF YOU'LL EXCUSE HULK, CHUCK KLOSTERMAN WANTS HIS FORMATTING BACK.

12.

OKAY FINE. HULK AIN'T GONNA GO OUT LIKE THAT. HERE'S SOME COLLABORATION AT IT'S BEST.

IN 1998 CUOMO AND SHARP WORKED TOGETHER ON A SIDE PROJECT CALLED "HOMIE" WITH GREG BROWN FROM CAKE! AND ADAM + YUVEL FROM SOUL COUGHING! WHAT DO YOU KNOW? TWO MORE OF HULK'S FAVORITE BANDS. AND THEY MADE THIS UTTERLY FANTASTIC SONG CALLED "AMERICAN GIRLS" AND IT REMAINS ONE OF HULK'S FAVORITES TO THIS DAY. FOR ONE, YOU CAN HEAR EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THOSE BANDS IN THIS SONG WHICH IS SOMETHING THAT RARELY HAPPENS. YOU CAN HEAR CUOMO'S DISTINCTIVE VOICE. GREG'S WAILING-YET-SOMEHOW-COUNTRY-STYLED GUITAR LICKS. THE SLOW, RHYTHMIC PERCUSSION FROM THE SOUL COUGHING BOYS.

AND MOST OF ALL, SHARP'S WONDERFUL SWIRLING BASS-LINES.

PURE JOY:

<3 HULK

Film Crit Hulk's photo About the Author: FILM CRIT HULK WAS CREATED IN A CHAOTIC LAB EXPERIMENT INVOLVING GAMMA RADIATION, TELEPODS, AND THE GHOST OF PAULINE KAEL. NOW HULK HAVE DEEP AND ABIDING LOVE CINEMA.
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