I think Raditude is a mish-mash of good and bad ideas but nothing ever quites touch on success. That sounds harsh, but Raditude isn't AS bad as some fans make it out to be. That being said, it's not their best effort either.
I didn't really like the production on the album for one. I didn't really like the collaborations for two. I'm sick of the collaborations with other bands/artists. Some songs end up not sounding like Weezer at all. Like Put me back together, which is straight up an AAR song in style. Can't Stop Partying was a cool demo on Alone 2, but it's execution of trying to be a club song/rock song never really worked since they didn't seem to know what direction to go in. I felt I don't want to let you go wasn't as good as the Alone 2 demo either.
Songs like I'm Your Daddy are catchy, but the phrase "I'm Your Daddy" in connection to Rivers talking about a relationship with a girl (and in the song a younger girl at that) sounds weird and creepy. I sound negative here, but I secretly love the song for it's music. It's the approach to what the song is ABOUT and the LYRICS that I don't like. It could have been a sweet song about his daughter, where the inspiration derived from, but he decided to opt for a more meaningless story where it loses heart and becomes disposable pop. I guess that would be okay if the subject matter again wasn't kind of creepy given my knowledge of Rivers age.
The Girl Got Hot is another song that suffers from being an okay pop song with nothing more to offer. It's not the worst song on the album, but it doesn't do anything very adventurous musically and lyrically never gets very clever. Just a by the numbers somewhat catchy pop tune. It's not that bad, I still like it but it's definitely far from the best Rivers has ever done.
Love is the Answer. They took some risks I guess with what they did here, but I don't personally like the result. Unnecessary and I felt it ruined the song. I'm also puzzled that he did this after giving the song, essentially, to another artist.
Tripping down the Freeway was a great song. My only complaint with that one is it dates itself a little by referencing the years. But that's a small one, stellar song. Love it. Sounds like Red Album and actually like Rivers wrote it. Run Over By a Truck is also pretty great.
Other complaints, "You wish you were at lunch" line in Underdogs ruins it a little. It's a pretty good song, but that one line bothers me. I don't get it, it feels out of place. I won't mention Prettiest Girl, as that particular song doesn't really count. You know it's awesome, but it was written in 1997.
Red was a much better effort, with much better songwriting. This followed that which hurt it some. There's nothing as grand as Greatest Man here. Nothing as adventurous. Maybe in style, but mixing a club song in the midst of alternative rock/pop rock kind of makes it a mish mash. I know CSP isn't exactly a club song, but it was trying to be.
All in all, I know they could do much better.
I disdain the fact that you put fans in quotes as if to say that somehow people who dislike Raditude aren't true fans. Ever thought that maybe your standards are different than some fans?
I find Raditude to be, for the most part, very bland and forced. Put Me Back Together is an "emotional, sad" song that holds no weight because of the cliche' lyrics and overwrought delivery. Love is the Answer reaches so very hard but falls victim to the same flaws as Put Me Back Together. The vocals on all the tracks are auto-tuned to smithereens, destroying everything that made Rivers a great vocalist: his range of emotion.
That isn't to say that I hate Raditude or think it's all bad. Trippin' Down The Freeway is a smashing success, I Don't Want To Let You Go is still one of my favorite Weezer songs ever and I truly think The Underdogs is an outstanding classic and the best lyrical summary of the band that Rivers has ever given. Raditude isn't great and it isn't horrible (imo), it's just okay. And nothing makes me more bored than an album that makes me say, "Well I guess it wasn't that bad..."
What bleedgoldandwhite2, bleed0range, and Gohi said.
Personally, it's the kind of album I can sing along to while driving, and in that sense I can enjoy it. The actual quality of the songs is the main issue. I'm Your Daddy is catchy as hell (especially the bridge) but the subject matter and cliched-awkward lyrical choices is where it fails, which basically can be said for the rest of the album. Nonetheless, PMBT is probably my biggest Weezer guilty pleasure ever (ice cream, drooling, and all) despite basically being from the point of view of a 15 year old.
It just felt like that with Red deluxe the band took some really promising steps forward, then with Raditude took twice as many steps backward. But again, I don't hate it, just embarrassed and disappointed by the final product. I was all for the collabs, because I thought it be an interesting experiment and would help hone Rivers' songwriting craft for the better. Unfortunately I was wrong. Still, even just considering the batch of songs from this era, if the standard album had instead included Turning Up The Radio, Prettiest Girl, Run Over By A Truck, and Underdogs, it would have been a much much better album.
The majority of Weezer's output is only fully appreciated for it's blinding brilliance 3-5 years after the fact.
I'll be able to give a definitive answer on this often posted 'Raditude issue' sometime between 2012-2014.
I fast forward through stuff on the blue album, and I do it on Raditude.
I love certain songs on the blue album, and same goes for Raditude.
I actually didn't even pay attention to Raditude until Daniel Tosh dissed it. I gave it a listen and decided I disagreed with him.
Your mileage may vary.
However, I think that the whining about Raditude is magnified by the internet. There were people back in the day that referred to Weezer as a sissy band (before emo became a catchy put down) and hated all the stuff now seen as the golden age of Rivers Cuomo's writing ability.
Yes, in the 90's when I was a very young bodybuilding construction worker and listened to the blue album, people would say "you listen to that crap? Is your Pearl Jam CD scratched or something?"
Rivers is evolving and so are fans new and old. While that happens, whining will ensue on both ends. Raditude is just a soapbox from which some can whine or heap fawning praise upon the band.
As you were.