When Nirvana broke the wall separating good music from 80's hair metal, they led a rush of alt rock bands up the charts. At the forefront of the post-Nirvana days was Green Day. After putting out two wildy popular independent albums, the major labels were chomping at the bit to sign the California pop-punk trio. After a long battle with themselves, Green Day finally signed with Warner Brothers and became the big band that would come to be shunned by their original Gilman Street following. With undeniable pop-punk gems that would become anthemd to generation X, Dookie became one of the undeniable classic albums of the decade.
Dookie had some of the greatest songs of the 90's. The world famous LONGVIEW is a perfect example of what Green Day could really do when they felt like it. Everything that Green Day was is incorporated into this diamond. Tre's awesome tom roll, Mike's now world-reknowned bass line and some of Billie's best songwriting. This song is what made masturbation cool again. It's anthematic chorus detailing Billie's escapades in his own cell made many a teens little escape much more acceptable. Also the skater anthem of 1994, BASKET CASE, did gigantic things for Green Day's popularity. It's undoubtedly a punk rock masterpiece, using so many trademark things, that I still find this song a classic. You can get tired of Longview. But Basket Case is one of the best punk songs in history. One of Green Day's most underrated tracks, the musically engaging WELCOME TO PARADISE is perhaps their best song talent wise ever. It's breakdown in the bridge is reason alone to go out and buy the album. It was a single, but a live performance video didn't get airtime on MTV, so it didn't blow up into the world famous hit that Longview and Basket Case. Shwoing a little depth, Green Day's touching but still fast hard rock song SHE is a very tight song. It's eerily simple bassline is a thing of beauty and it's impossible to not play it whenever you sit down. The third most famous single, WHEN I COME AROUND, is a repetetive and IMO overrated song. However it showed some of the feeling that Green Day could have. It's the closeest thing to a ballad on Dookie.
Some of the non famous tracks are some of Green Day's most charming work. It's deceptively simple stuff, like the oddly titled and repetetive SASSAFRAS ROOTS. But some of them had an underground following, like the opener, BURNOUT. Burnout's a killer anthem, complete with great drumming and a tight chorus. The songs on Dookie made the album the classic it is today.
It's impossible to deny the nineties charm Dookie has. It's so appealing to any survivor of the nineties. It's nostalgia is one of it's key selling factors now. And why would it not be? The hook heavy radio friendly consistency throughout the album leads to the undeniable love any fan of music has. Musically it's Green Day's best album. Tre's drumming blows my mind every time I hear it. Check out the spasmodic transition between CHUMP and Longview. It's a minute an a half of breakdown solo like "Panic Song" off Insomniac. Tre's work there is one of his finest, and who among us drummers hasn't sat down and played along to Longview or Basket Case? This is still when Tre was considered a god mind you, before the makeup and tight pants brought disappointingly simple beats. And what can be said about Mike's bassowrk? A whole lot. Of course there's Longview, which is the catchiest bass riff, quite possibly of all time, but so much more gets lost in that. The solo on Welcome to Paradise is genius, along with the transistion between Chump and Longview. There are magnificent fills scattered throughout the album, like in She. During the solo he absolutely goes crazy. Mike could have been one of the best bassists of all time.
The only downside that I can think of is the string of short 1:30 minute songs at the end. There not of lesser wuality than most of the album (Except the boring EMENIUS SLEEPUS), but their length is a disappointment. The best of these three is the simple, but effective IN THE END which has another fantastic breakdown in the middle. Dookie ends on a high note, with the excellently written acoustic F.O.D. It is a soft, all about Billie song, until the end explodes with ferocity put forth by punk gods before them. For the patient fans, the hidden ALL BY MYSELF is a hysterical Tre Cool ode to -what else- masturbation.
This is a classic Green Day album. This is their tour de force. If you want to get into "real" Green Day the one that still had it's roots and hadn't forgotten the punks they were, this is for you. There are several masterpieces on here, which make it enough to buy even if you've never heard of Green Day. This is a must have to any music lover, whether you like punk or not.
Welcome to Paradies
Some of the catchiest songs ever
This is what Green Day should be known for, not the makeup.
Tre's drumming... wow, why can't he keep this up?
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