1MM: Weezer @ Madison Square Garden, 9.24.08

Photos by Andrew Parks

As we said on our Twitter account earlier, Wednesday’s Weezer show was basically the opposite of My Bloody Valentine’s endurance test the day before: loose and laidback, beginning with a raucous rendition of “My Name Is Jonas,” as howled by bassist Scott Shriner. (Frontman Rivers Cuomo spent the entire song prowling the stage and flexing his finest rock star poses.)

Watching Cuomo share the spotlight with his bandmates–every member had their turn(s) as lead vocalist, including a cheeky bastard cover of Oasis’ “What’s the Story, Morning Glory?” by drummer Patrick Wilson–was certainly surprising at first. After all, the last time we saw Weezer (about six years ago in a mid-sized Rochester arena), Cuomo was still in his eccentric/egocentric phase, keeping all eyes on him while looking stilted and akward for at least half of the set. Not this time around; judging by the band’s costume changes alone, from Royal Tenenbaum-esque track suits to Cuomo’s inexplicable soccer uniform at the show’s close, Weezer was clearly determined to show their lighter side. (Check out the difference between cover stories in 2002 and 2006 to see how Cuomo’s morphed from an imposing Grizzly Adams phase to being a complete goofball.)

Song wise, tonight was full of fan favorites, balancing proven new jams (“Pork & Beans,” a rather operatic “The Greatest Man That Ever Lived”) with such welcome deep cuts as “Pink Triangle” and “El Scorcho.” Photos and a complete set list after the jump …

MSG Setlist:
My Name Is Jonas
Pink Triangle
Perfect Situation
Say It Ain’t So
Keep Fishin’
Undone (featuring Tom DeLonge of Angels & Airwaves)
Pork & Beans
Dope Nose
Hash Pipe
El Scorcho
What’s the Story, Morning Glory? (Oasis cover)
The Greatest Man That Ever Lived

Encore one (with 30 fans as ‘hootenanny’ backing band):
Island in the Sun
Beverly Hills

Encore two:
Sliver (Nirvana cover)
Buddy Holly