Weezer Ring in the Solstice With Final ‘SZNZ’ EP ‘Winter’

Seven-track project includes some of the Elliot Smith-style sounds Rivers Cuomo teased — but also a lot of classic guitar crunch

With the winter solstice officially upon us today, Dec. 21, Weezer are wrapping up their ambitious seasonal EP project with the final installment: SZNZ: Winter.

In the lead-up to the EP’s release, Weezer shared one new song, “I Want a Dog,” a solemn acoustic number that first seems like it’s just about canine companionship, before turning into a broader meditation on human connection in the digital age. “I Want a Dog” is one of seven tracks on the Winter EP, which also includes tracks like “Iambic Pentameter,” “Sheraton Commander,” and “The One That Got Away.”

Back in a 2021 interview with Good Morning America, frontman Rivers Cuomo was teasing the entire SZNZ project and said the Winter installment would feature some “sad acoustic, Elliot Smith-style” music. There is certainly some lonesome acoustic picking on the new EP — like “I Want a Dog,” “Basketball,” and “The Deep and Dreamless Sleep” — but it always seems to quickly give way to that big, classic, gain-soaked Weezer guitar crunch (not that there’s anything wrong with that).

Weezer launched the SZNZ project with Spring back on March 20, the spring equinox, and released the next two installments, Summer and Autumn, on their solstice and equinox, respectively. The group was planning to play all four EPs live during a Broadway residency in September, but the shows were ultimately canceled due to admittedly “low ticket sales” and “unbelievably high expenses.”

Weezer do have a handful of festival appearances slated for next year, including sets at the baseball-themed Innings Festival, which will coincide with spring training in Tempe, Arizona (Feb. 25) and Tampa, Florida (March 18). They’ll also play at the Railbird Music Festival in Lexington, Kentucky, in June.