Review Summary: An enjoyable Green Day album that doesn't rank among their best, but gets the job done. Whether the next two albums in the trilogy (Dos and Tre) live up to the hype remains to be seen.
The good thing about Uno is that it's a step above 21st Century Breakdown, which wasn't a bad album in all honesty, it was just incredibly bloated and misguided. Thankfully Green Day have avoided a third consecutive rock opera and have gone back to their pre-American Idiot sound. No innovations are made on Uno, there's just a lot of damned good pop rock runes. It does suffer from the odd forgettable track such as Carpe Diem and Troublemaker, but on the whole it certainly gets its job done and delivers a good time. It's nowhere near as much of a chore to listen to in its entirety as 21st Century Breakdown or even American Idiot could have been at times, as the songs are all rather short and come at you thick and fast. If you're a fan of Green Day's old school output such as Kerplunk or Dookie, then you're in for a good time. Kill the DJ and Nuclear Family are pop punk gems, whereas Stay the Night is a power pop sensation that delivers one of Green Day's best tracks on any of their last few albums. There's no doubt that if you've already decided that you dislike Green Day, then Uno will not change your opinion in the slightest. However, if you want a short, disposable and wholly entertaining blast of pop punk, look no further. It won't stand the test of time and become a classic album and it's certainly not on level with Green Day's best albums (Dookie, Insomniac, Warning or American Idiot) but it's worth a listen if you have even the slightest interest in Green Day or pop rock.
However, there is a problem with Uno. It has almost entirely disposed of the band's ambition. While that is definietly a good thing in regards to the fact that we aren't getting a bloated and overlong album, it also unfortunately means that Green Day aren't trying any new ideas, they're just treading over old ground. Maybe you'll see that as a good thing but in reality there's little sense in that. The band's quality control isn't exactly stellar, as albums such as Nimrod and the aforementioned 21st Century Breakdown have proven, both with 18 tracks each. Because of this, it's questionable whether or not the "Uno, Dos, Tre" trilogy of albums is even needed at all. As has already been stated in this review, Carpe Diem and Troublemaker are entirely forgettable, with Troublemaker even sounding very similar to Horseshoes and Handgrenades from the previous Green Day album. As is the case with almost ever double or triple album in existence, it perhaps would have been wise to compile all the highlights onto one record. But it's too early to jump to such conclusions. Maybe we'll get two better albums with Dos and Tre. But even if those albums are equal to this, then we'd have no reason not to be satisfied. Green Day's album trilogy has paid off if this first instalment is anything to go by. It's the next two instalments the pressure lies on, for the time being.
Stay the Night
Kill the DJ