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The Dawn

It’s kind of surprising to find that this is not an Early Album 5 demo – it sure sounds like one. In fact, I think the lead guitar line was recast on “Hey Domingo!” from that era. But instead, this is a song that surfaced during Weezer’s 2001 Extended Hyper Midget Tour, technically making it an early contender for Maladroit (if anything). The song was played and bootlegged numerous times on that tour but, to my knowledge, has never surfaced in any other form.

Speaking of unconventional songforms from this era, I can’t think of a better example than “The Dawn.” The first minute and a half of the song is spent on some instrumental rockage (negligible, aside from the pleasant “Domingo!”-esque lead), and the final minute is filled by two brief verses (with the same lyrics) and an even briefer outro.

The lyrics are, in their entirety: “And as the day goes on / The world is holding on / Amuse yourself and I can’t wait / I wake up with the dawn.” Kind of cool; I can’t think of any other Weezer song that is simply four lines.

I have five versions of this song (11/15, 11/24, 11/29, 12/02, 12/06), but they’re all pretty indistinguishable. Although Maladroit was an album marred by poor track selection and sequencing, the band was right to abandon this one. Granted, the 12/02 version does begin with Cuomo saying, a la Kermit the Frog, “I like the way you smack my ass.” I guess that one’s a keeper.


  1. Art Vandelay wrote:

    There isn’t much of anything to say about this song, because… well, it’s not much of a song. Aside from being insubstantial and weak, the riff section and the chorus don’t sound like parts that should be tacked together in the first place. Really amateur-sounding stuff… the band was wise to finally put the kibosh on this one.

    Monday, July 28, 2008 at 2:05 pm | Permalink
  2. Sick Nick wrote:

    This falls in the same catagory as Diamond Rings for me; 2 songs i keep forgetting we didn’t get demo versions of back then. Although if i were to get a demo of one of those songs it would be Diamond Rings. The Dawn didn’t do much for me outside of the intro which i did enjoy.

    Monday, July 28, 2008 at 2:22 pm | Permalink
  3. Soyrev wrote:

    Yeah Art, it’s pretty crappy…Like you say, the individual parts hardly work on their own, but together, make no sense at all. I would say the “Hey Domingo” lick and the interesting song structure (just four lines) are its only semi-redeeming qualities.

    And Sick Nick, “Diamond Rings” is great!

    Monday, July 28, 2008 at 2:39 pm | Permalink
  4. Soyrev wrote:

    Also, food for thought: this is by no means good, but…is it actually worse than, say, “Space Rock” or “Possibilities”?

    Monday, July 28, 2008 at 2:44 pm | Permalink
  5. Running Monk wrote:

    i actually like this song. a lot more than Diamond Rings which i don’t really care for. i was surprised to see that you didn’t mention Your Room. i always assumed the band didn’t record this one for Maladroit because it was more or less a very similar style song as Your Room and they liked it more. i’ve never thought of Hey Domingo! when listening to this. i’ll have to listen to them back to back an compare. i always thought this would be a cool song to start a concert/album with.

    Monday, July 28, 2008 at 7:03 pm | Permalink
  6. Soyrev wrote:

    In all honesty, I’m really not that well versed w/ Mala-era outtakes. I’ll make the connections as I go along, promise.

    And I only compare to “Hey Domingo” in terms of that guitar lick that the song begins with.

    Monday, July 28, 2008 at 8:42 pm | Permalink
  7. GumbyTom wrote:

    I always thought with The Dawn, D&D and Your Room all being introduced in the fall of ’01, he was going through a short (mostly) instrumental phase. The songs are all different, but to me, for this reason they’re tied together.

    The “smack my ass” comment is a definite keeper. But he kicked off a few shows with this one saying “good morning” at the end. Appropriate for a song called The Dawn being played at 9-something p.m.

    Monday, July 28, 2008 at 8:47 pm | Permalink
  8. Art Vandelay wrote:

    BTW the “smack my ass” bit is Rivers singing a line from a Puddle of Mudd song, if you weren’t aware.

    Monday, July 28, 2008 at 9:11 pm | Permalink
  9. Soyrev wrote:

    Wait, what? I don’t have the rest of that show…how did Puddle of Mudd come up? Was he just straightup making fun of them?

    Monday, July 28, 2008 at 9:38 pm | Permalink
  10. Art Vandelay wrote:

    He was in the habit of spouting off all kinds of inane nonsense in between songs during those tours, as I recall.

    Monday, July 28, 2008 at 10:27 pm | Permalink
  11. Sick Nick wrote:

    As for Your Room I was really dissapointed when that make the final cut of Maladroit. I thought it was a shoe-in as it was demoed everyday, sometimes twice a day. I always thought it would have made the perfect opener to the record. At least i got to hear it live at the same show i heard The Dawn at.

    Tuesday, July 29, 2008 at 8:14 am | Permalink
  12. ...Our Name Is Jonas wrote:

    I have a special affection of this song in that is was the first song, I ever got to hear =w= play live. The K-zoo Recording from the JEW and D tour in 01. I love it

    Tuesday, July 29, 2008 at 9:33 am | Permalink
  13. ThomYorke wrote:

    I have to completely disagree with most of you. I find this song to be simple, fun, and very memorable.

    It floats along, brings it hard a couple times, and then fades out to Rivers saying “Good Morning” is his usual dead-pan delivery. It’s short, to the point, and I still enjoy sticking it at the beginning of a =w= mix I’m making on my ipod.

    Of all the mala-era demos, this one had some of the most potential to be fleshed out to something nice for an album.

    Tuesday, July 29, 2008 at 10:48 am | Permalink
  14. Soyrev wrote:

    I can agree with the potential — again, this sounds like an interesting idea — but I still feel the execution is pretty dang weak.

    Tuesday, July 29, 2008 at 12:40 pm | Permalink
  15. Running Monk wrote:

    when you come across some Maladroit era songs, feel free to reference my “what the fuck’s the difference?” thread on albumsix. i compare the different recordings/takes of the songs done for the Maladroit sessions. i have updated it in a long time though.

    Tuesday, July 29, 2008 at 12:47 pm | Permalink
  16. PKMN Trainer Red wrote:

    Actually, I sort of like this song. The extended instrumental rising up into that four-line verse, then coming down into the instrumental and rising into the same verse really is an anomaly in Weezer’s canon and one that works quite well (at the very least, better than most songs from the era). It would have made a great opener, MUCH better than “American Gigolo”, and the lyrics are just vague enough for the song not to be a complete embarrassment!

    Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 6:59 pm | Permalink
  17. Soyrev wrote:

    With a lot of refinement (not Weezer’s usual brand of “turn up the suck” refinement, but actually), this could have been a great opener. As it stands, it’s a very half-baked concept.

    Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 7:02 pm | Permalink
  18. ThomYorke wrote:

    “With a lot of refinement (not Weezer’s usual brand of “turn up the suck” refinement, but actually), this could have been a great opener. As it stands, it’s a very half-baked concept.”

    Hahaha. What a great analysis; I guess I must have missed this comment back when it was posted. I’m glad we’ve at least convinced you this song had potential as an opener to the album.

    Friday, January 2, 2009 at 2:33 pm | Permalink
  19. Soyrev wrote:

    To be honest, I think “Hyde” would’ve been the best possible opener/”intro to the album” for an ideal Make Believe. I know that song underwent a lot of different variations and forms on the Midget tours, but there’s this one version (away from music at the moment, can’t check the date) that is just beautiful, certainly one of my favorite pieces of Weezer music since ’96. I think of it as the instrumental section of OID lite, both in that it’s not quite as powerful but it’s also more upbeat and hopeful. Would’ve been a great way to play into the whole supposed-theme-of-redemption the record nearly had going, what with “Pardon Me,” “Peace” and…well, I guess “Freak Me Out” and would’ve-been “I Was Scared.” Yes, ladies and gents, even Make Believe could have been a great album…

    But oh man, that one version of “Hyde.” If I had been there…seeing Weezer come out and hearing them play that for the first time ever to start the show…I would’ve lost my mind. It’s so fucking pretty! Maladroit would have been entirely forgotten in 3 minutes’ time.

    Friday, January 2, 2009 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

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