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.