Starting off a musical career with huge hits in the mid-90s can be damning. Weezer first impressed alternative and pop-punk listeners with their iconic works The Blue Album and Pinkerton. These albums are Weezer’s standard; anything that falls even relatively short can feel like an absolute letdown.

But straying from what listeners are familiar with can sound subpar, too.

So far, the band has seemed to maintain steady momentum over the past 25 years. They released Pacific Daydream in 2017 and the (self-titled) Teal Album back in late January. Now, they’re back with the Black Album.

The timing of this most recent release — their 13th studio album — makes listeners question whether the band is prioritizing quantity over quality. A bit over a year passed between their other most recent albums. Released only five weeks after the Teal Album, the Black Album feels rushed and unprepared.

Weezer started off by previewing four songs from their newest album on Fortnite. This ended up being pretty appropriate, considering that some of the Black Album’s lyrics sound like they were written by a 15-year-old playing the game.

Questionable lyrics like “Stay up reading Mary Poppins/ Overwhelmed by Netflix options” on the song “Too Many Thoughts In My Head” are not rare on this track or the entirety of the album. Musically, the song is excellent, as it blends a funky ‘70s sound with a rap bridge that somehow works. It’s one of the Black Album’s most energetic moments. Unfortunately though, lines like “I’m so high on cookies it’s insane” distract listeners from the engaging trance of Weezer’s sound.

[Read more: Review: Weezer’s cover album doesn’t live up to its potential]

With an entire song about zombies — it’s called “Zombie Bastards,” I’m not making this up — in the mix, the album feels just as disjointed as imagined. Some corny moments feel a little intentional, but others are just too random to be excused.

Luckily, while many of the lyrics are certainly rough, Weezer does not let listeners forget what brought them to fame in the first place: the strong vocals of Rivers Cuomo combined with expert instrumentals, displayed on tracks such as “High As A Kite.” While the lyrics are still no masterpiece, they seem eons better than “Die, die, you zombie bastards.”

Cuomo was certainly correct when he said the Black Album was more playful than any of the band’s past works. Weezer dabbles in rap and some electronic elements that are new for the group. Sadly, though, the risks sound amateur and out-of-place. The album feels more like a draft than a finished work. While Weezer should not be knocked for their experimentation, they should have released the Black Album when it sounded ready.

Weezer has stood as an alternative/punk standard, but now it sounds like they are forcing themselves down an unnatural path. Driving electronic beats and surface-level pop may be popular, but these trends obviously do not fit Weezer’s strengths. If the band is truly concerned with doing what the public wants, they should just keep covering “Africa.” It’s their biggest hit in years anyway, which is pretty telling of the band’s recent successes.