Green Day
¡UNO!


3.5
great

Review

by Raul Stanciu STAFF
September 23rd, 2012 | 21 replies | 2,048 views


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Their most immature record is their most accessible one yet, but not their most representative.

¡UNO! finds Green Day at what's arguably their poppiest state yet. The guitars are lighter in comparison with their previous efforts and the whole records comes in between Warning's cleaner tone and Foxboro Hot Tubs' garage rock twang. While the band has never been renowned for their complicated song structures, on ¡UNO! all tracks have the same verse-chorus-verse-chorus-(eventual bridge)-chorus formula along with simple, to the point instrumentals.

Focusing on creating a trilogy more than on songs themselves, it sometimes feels as if the band has been economical, each track being developed from one musical idea and often stretched on for too long. The numbers aren't as developed here (of course in Green Day's own terms) as on their latest records, but aren't as short and harder as on their 90s material. Also, the lyrics are at times lazy and tend to be a bit repetitive, especially on tracks like "Let Yourself Go", "Loss Of Control" and "Kill The DJ". Still, these negative aspects don't drag the album down that much, because at least this time the band feels as if they have some fun, rather than just going through motions without any clear mindset or story, which is 21st Century Breakdown's case.

¡UNO! relies mostly on catchy melodies and singalongs, becoming Green Day's most accessible album yet. The whole album is made out of power chords with usually short, unmemorable solos, loose drumming (after 20 years Tre Cool hasn't developed his drumming skills at all, no offense) and enough ooohs and aaahs to make the listener hum along during the choruses. Even so, not all tracks here are as successful, as "Carpe Diem" and "Angel Blue" are easily forgettable. They are not necessarily bad, since most of the songs on ¡UNO! are flat like these, but they don't have the hooks to make an impact whatsoever on the listener. On the other hand, opener "Nuclear Family" and "Fell For You" both offer a lot of fun. The former is, simply put, a great pop punk song similar to any Nimrod. track and the latter has the sweet innocence of their debut 39/Smooth, that will make the listener smile and the cute lyrics sound as if they've been taken from an adolescent's diary ("I had a dream that I kissed your lips and it felt so true/Then I woke up as a nervous wreck and I fell for you").

Also, tracks like "Kill The DJ" and "Troublemaker" offer a little variation here just because they sound slightly different. "Kill The DJ" has a disco feel, featuring funky guitar riffs and some cool tremolo licks, while "Troublemaker", with its spoken word verses and clear Foxboro Hot Tubs influenced stop-start riffs, has some attitude (this can be seen as Green Day's attempt at swag). Of course, there aren't any statements to be found here, nor any depth in the lyrics, just some fun attempting to break the routine. "Rusty James" is one of the most accomplished songs on the record and one of the few to share some nostalgia in its message, as it can be seen as an homage to the band's hey days (and the whole punk rock scene that broke the mainstream) back in the 90s, giving way to newer trends ("This broken scene is turning green/Brass knuckles left in the rain/Death wish kids among the living" & "And all the losers, can't even win for losing/And the beginners don't even know what song they're singing"). The fact is that even if the scene has changed a lot since their breakthrough back in 1994, Green Day have pretty much stayed the same and are easily recognizable at any hour whether for their 90s classics or their overplayed (and occasional good) singles from American Idiot and 21st Century Breakdown.

In the end, this is Green Day at one of their most immature states (or at a midlife crisis) in their career and this album is the best the audience could've gotten at this point. The guys will never go back to their early sound as they are too big now to leave aside the shallow arena rock. As a result, ¡UNO! fits best somewhere in between Kerplunk and Dookie as it features enough songs about sex and teenager angst (even the profanity level has upped a bit) to think Billie had these songs kept in some diary for 20 years now. Still, he is too conscious of where he is now and the fact that he is 40 and this is seen on tracks like "Rusty James" and "Sweet 16". If taken as it is, a simple, fun record, ¡UNO! is a solid record, but unfortunately it doesn't have any infectious tracks to be remembered or any depth to become a milestone in their career (except for the fact that they are releasing a trilogy). For fans who have stuck with the band since the beginning this is more valuable than to those who found Green Day through American Idiot.



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user ratings (857)
Chart.
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other reviews of this album
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Comments:Add a Comment 
insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
September 23rd 2012



3323 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

So, yeah, I hope as many users feel the same about this album as I do. Any constructive criticism appreciated.

The album can be streamed here - http://www.facebook.com/GreenDay/app_427013274001958

Digging: Karma To Burn - Arch Stanton

JAXETA
September 23rd 2012



766 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

good review
poopy album

ViperAces
September 23rd 2012



12375 Comments


This album is good ???

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
September 23rd 2012



3323 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yeah it's good, but not the old green day or the newer green day. it's foxboro hot tubs more than anything. thanks jaxeta

Acanthus
September 23rd 2012



9535 Comments


I can see this being enjoyable, need to check it out.

Digging: Die Sektor - Applied Structure In A Void

newjunkaesthetic93
September 23rd 2012



1871 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0 | Sound Off

No one has the balls to review this higher than a 3.5 or lower than a 3.

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
September 23rd 2012



3323 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

it really is, especially Fell For You. the album is a big departure from their previous one.

Edit: @newjunkaesthetic - sorry man, but I was almost sure this was gonna suck, but it doesn't.

Acanthus
September 23rd 2012



9535 Comments


Yeah I didn't go for 21st Century, stopped after American Idiot dropped.

Acanthus
September 23rd 2012



9535 Comments


"Fell For You" is pretty good, if the guitars were a bit harder I could easily see the nostalgia level being upped quite a bit.

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
September 23rd 2012



3323 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I don't understand why they kept the guitars light because some songs really need more power. Maybe they wanted to keep an overall Foxboro Hot Tubs feel.

kitsch
September 23rd 2012



5107 Comments


i dont understand why anyone is listening to this

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
September 23rd 2012



3323 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I for one am a long time Green Day fan so I still have some faith in them and it turned out this isn't shit.

Brostep
Staff Reviewer
September 23rd 2012



3334 Comments


Nice review, have a pos. Doubtful that I'll be listening to this given how bad "Oh Love" is from the radio stations that keep playing the damn thing, but at least it's apparently not terrible.

Lenix
September 23rd 2012



793 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

shit

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
September 23rd 2012



4378 Comments


To be honest I've never seen the appeal in Green Day, then again, the only song I've heard by them are the ones that are on the radio constantly. But review was great as always, mate. POS'd.

barcafan21
September 23rd 2012



1909 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

i've spent the last 5 months downplaying this in my head, trying to lower my expectations, which all of these reviews are trying to undo

Digging: The Antlers - Hospice

NeoSpaz
September 23rd 2012



4517 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

This is nothing different, and it hasn't got the old hooks.

Good review though

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
September 24th 2012



3323 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks guys.
@Paperback - Try listening to Dookie, Insomniac and Nimrod. Those albums are a lot of fun, maybe you'll dig them.

ReturnToRock
September 24th 2012



3448 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thank. Fucking. GOD. I was expecting 21CB except even more overbloated, and they've given us Nimwarniac. I am fine with this. It is relevant to my interests.

I only miss the old rhythm section - you know, the one who actually knew how to play? (Tre and Mike have somehow regressed on their skills). And I wish there wasn't quite so much self-ripoffism (hello, bass intro to Maria on Let Yourself Go!). But I am elated that this does NOT follow up on the dreadful, awful, cringeworthy Kill The DJ.

I've seen a really negative review for this on YouTube (the guy just went on about how this was generic and safe and crap) and listening to it, I wonder: WHY?! Did he even listen to Let Yourself Go, Loss Of Control, Angel Blue? Sure it's safe, but it's loads of fun!

Glad to see the average ranking for this on Sputnik is closer to my own. Expect a review, once the fanboying has toned down a bit (still too biased at this point). I let you guys down with the review for Dead Silence, but I AM doing this one. And then I may do Dead Silence too.

WhiteNoise
September 24th 2012



3037 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

album is really fun, but i'm looking foward to Dos..."It's fuck time" has to be the dumbest fun rock song they've written.

Digging: Dot Hacker - How's Your Process? (Work)



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