Spending Time on the Borderline

Kung Fu

Well, the good news is that Ozma sound less like Weezer than they have in the past. The bad news is they still sound so ridiculously like them that they sacrifice both credibility and integrity. I’ve always thought these guys should name themselves, in some quirky way, after a lyric from a Weezer song; maybe they could be “The Pinkertons,” or “Only in Dreams.” I’d then at least feel like they’re being honest. But it seems that these guys actually take themselves somewhat seriously — which scares me.

The opening track is a dreadful rip off of Green-era Weezer song styling. The second track, “Your Name,” is a laid back, keyboard driven sleeper with whispered vocals, and surprisingly doesn’t sound like Weezer (except for the vocalist). It reminds me of softer Helium or Mary Timony stuff. “Come Home Andrea” again showcases just how badly the lead singer wants to be Rivers Cuomo; it’s absolutely fascinating. I wonder if he has a shrine to Rivers in his bedroom, with goat skulls and pentagrams in various strategic locations around it. The song itself has an Oasis feel, and is actually pretty cool.

The rest of the album finds the band wandering in and out of different styles, sticking closely to the Weezer thing. Ozma is desperately trying to break away from the shameful plagiarism of their last record, but they just can’t seem to let go of Rivers’ bosom. They want to become their own band, but it’s just so comfortable being Weezer Jr. Now, please don’t think that I’m over-exaggerating here: there’s a song here about a “turtleneck cover-up,” and we all know Weezer’s first single off of the blue album. This isn’t a bad record. It’s a fun listen for Weezer fans, if you’re able to over look blatant plagiarism.

Kung Fu Records: http://www.kungfurecords.com/

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