Weezer Scrap Rubin Tracks

Band begins recording fifth album fresh

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Weezer have scrapped the sessions they recorded in December with producer Rick Rubin (Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jay-Z, Johnny Cash) for their fifth album and have started again fresh. With help from engineer Chad Bamford, the band has been recording since July and hopes to finish before frontman Rivers Cuomo returns to Harvard University next month. The band hopes to release the album, the follow-up to 2002's Maladroit, late this year or early next year.

Rubin has not been part of the "day to day action" for the new sessions, according to the band's official site, but he is serving as an advisor. "[Rick] has become more of a 'mentor' figure," reads a post. "He had a tremendous impact on Rivers and the band in '03, helping re-organize the band's then-somewhat confused recording priorities, and being a wonderful and positive influence on Rivers, helping him 'find his way' both personally and in songwriting again."

In an email exchange with Rolling Stone, Cuomo declined to elaborate on the decision to start recording anew, writing that he was not in the "right mind-mode to speak right now."

On Monday, Cuomo posted two solo covers on his personal Web site (riverscuomo.com). Cuomo's take on Harry Nilsson's pop classic "Without You" and Francoise Hardy's "Je Changerais" were recorded in February 2003. "I don't speak French so I have no idea what I'm saying," Cuomo says of the latter. "I just transcribed the words phonetically."