Rivers Cuomo reveals he was 'completely obliterated' by Radiohead's 'OK Computer'

'OK Human' is out now!
Rivers Cuomo of Weezer
Photo credit Getty Images

OK, human... you knew it was coming. Now, it’s time to connect!

Weezer has dropped their surprise album OK Human today, with the soon to be released Van Weezer record still set for a May 7 drop date.

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It's only been a week since we were given the album's first single, "All My Favorite Songs," and now fans can "disconnect from the world, and connect to the album." P.S. "Van Weezer is still coming out on May 7th," the band reassured fans in a previous message.

"OK Human was made at a time when humans-playing-instruments was a thing of the past," Weezer explained last week. "All we could do is look back on ancient times when humans really mattered and when the dark tech-takeover fantasy didn’t exist."

"We used our instruments to connect to the 1960’s and 1970’s and, with the orchestra, back to the 18th and 19th centuries," their thread continued. "We had no click track or loops or hi-tech sounds. Not even an electric guitar."

Speaking with Zane Lowe on Apple Music, Rivers was reminded about the rivalry between The Beach Boys and The Beatles during their heyday, and the “arms race” they had been in when producing records. After releasing Pet Sounds with less than optimal success, Rivers felt it was “game over” for the Beach Boys, who were trumped by The Beatles’ Revolver.

“That’s kind of what OK Computer was like for me,” he admits about Radiohead’s 1997 album. "'Pinkerton' came out at the end of '96,” he explains, “and it was supposed to be our magnum opus and it just got destroyed and it's almost like the game over for our band. And then that summer of '97, we were on tour opening for No Doubt around the US in these big amphitheaters and you can imagine what 15,000 fans of ‘I'm Just a Girl’ are thinking of Weezer playing ‘Tired of Sex.’”

“It does not go over,” he continued. “And then one day on the tour bus, the guys are like, ‘Check it out. It's the new Radiohead single…’ They turned on MTV and it was ‘Paranoid Android.’ It completely obliterated me.”

After the tour, Rivers attended a big release party for OK Computer in Hollywood.

“I went there and I was like a nobody sitting there in Radiohead's moment of glory. And it was these twin feelings of pain and jealousy and at the same time, this music they made is so otherworldly and inspiring. So, it was a real push and pull in my heart at that moment. They went off into outer space after that.”

Cuomo also spoke about the odd way the new record actually came about after the seed was planted for it way back in 2017. Deciding to shelve it in favor of an arena rock record he said, "You know what? Let's put this one on hold for a minute and let's make this killer stadium, heavy metal rock album." So, the band went ahead with Van Weezer. Once it was wrapped up the pandemic hit, and their tour plans were ruined. "We were like, 'How can you promote a rock album if you can't rock?' So, at that point, we said, "Let's go back and finish up OK Human.'"

That being said, the band fully expects to go ahead with their postponed tour dates this summer alongside Green Day and Fall Out Boy on the Hella Mega Tour.

Cuomo told NME that as far as he's aware, plans remain in place for the tour to continue as currently scheduled. "My manager just told me yesterday that the US promoter is still saying it’s gonna happen.”

WATCH MORE: 5 Wild Ways Artists Dropped Albums


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