While the title probably brings up the image of the Radiohead classic, “OK Human” really comes across more like an homage to some of the more psychedelic work of The Beatles and The Beach Boys. Using the orchestra of Abbey Road, Weezer attempts to head into the arena of baroque and chamber pop, abandoning their electric guitar drive power pop sound. Even though this is probably the left field the band has ever gone, the experiment pays off surprisingly well. The bright orchestrations are beautiful, strings are warm and lush, the melodies are irresistibly catchy, and even though it’s so far outside their comfort zone, it still sounds like Weezer, just with a different musical accompaniment.
The orchestration fits perfectly with the lyrics, which often deal with with Rivers Cuomo’s existential insecurity about a world that seemingly outgrown him. With his uncomfortably honest approach to lyrics, he is able to paint a picture of his life in quarantine that’s very relatable. Some of the themes don’t work as well as others - “Grapes of Wrath” reads too much like product placement, “Screens” can sound too much like a boomer rant, and I really don’t need a song that’s trying to cheer up Sam Harris of all people - but more often than not you can empathize with his melancholy.
Besides the moments I mentioned earlier, I think “OK Human” is one of Weezer’s best albums to date, and shows that the long running band still hasn’t shown the last of what they can offer.