The rock band Weezer had some of its biggest success in years last year with its cover of Toto’s 1980s song “Africa.” The cover arose when a 15-year-old fan requested that the band sing the song, per Inquisitr, and when they finally did, the song reached No. 1 on the alternative charts, later becoming a staple of the band’s live shows.
Now, Weezer is continuing to ride the wave with an entire album of covers that the band released as a surprise on Wednesday. Per Pitchfork, the album is called The Teal Album, and it includes “Africa” as well as nine other covers of popular songs, mostly from the 1980s but with a few tracks from both before and after.
The album also includes Weezer’s takes on Tears For Fears’ “Everybody Wants to Rule the World,” The Eurythmics’ “Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This),” A-ha’s “Take on Me,” The Turtles’ “Happy Together,” Black Sabbath’s “Paranoid,” Electric Light Orchestra’s “Mr. Blue Sky,” TLC’s “No Scrubs,” Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean,” and Ben E. King’s “Stand By Me.”
This is Weezer’s fifth album to be named for a color. The band’s first album, from 1994, is known as The Blue Album, while their comeback album in 2001 was known as The Green Album. The band also released The Red Album in 2008 and The White Album in 2016. The band is also scheduled to release The Black Album in March.
As with The Beatles’ The White Album, all of these albums are formally titled Weezer, and only known colloquially by the color names.
The new album is available on Spotify and Apple Music.
Weezer burst on the scene in 1994, and while their 1996 follow-up Pinkerton was considered a flop at the time, it’s since emerged as a favorite among fans. Weezer returned in 2001 and has continued to perform and tour ever since.
The arguments among fans over whether Weezer’s latter-period music is as good as their earlier work are so contentious that they were even parodied in a Saturday Night Live sketch earlier this season.
The “Africa” cover came about after 15-year-old fan Mary Klym spent months on social media trying to persuade the band to play that particular song. After Weezer played a cover of a different Toto hit, “Rosanna,” they finally played “Africa” on Jimmy Kimmel Live last May, with Toto keyboardist Steve Porcaro even sitting in with the band.
Another cover of “Africa,” by Pitbull, appeared in last year’s Aquaman movie.