Green Day
Insomniac


4.5
superb

Review

by Magnus Strinnholm USER (17 Reviews)
June 13th, 2006 | 12 replies


Release Date: 1995 | Tracklist

Review Summary: On "Insomniac" Green Day took the sound from "Dookie" and turned the volume up even more. All of the songs here are upbeat, fast and furious. Overall it's one of Green Days best moments.

Insomniac by Green Day

Six years ago, I bought my first CD. I'm not trying to sound cliché here, but it really changed my life. No, it wasn't "Insomniac". It was actually "Warning" by Green Day that made me enter the enormous and fantastic world of music. Before then I listened to various compilations released with diverse mainstream artists such as Spice Girls and I didn't have any real taste at all. (But I did love Savage Garden, I can tell you that!). Anyway, I bought "Warning" for some reason, probably had heard "Waiting" somewhere I guess. I loved the record, for some time but after a while I needed something new. As I was really into Green Day, I decided to pick up "Dookie" and "Nimrod" from my local CD-store. I didn't know anything about the band, nothing about the success of "Dookie" in 1994 or how mainstream or not they were. The fact is, during this era, Green Day were back in the shadows. I played them both 'til my CD-player bled. "Nimrod" is still one of my all time favourite CDs. Anyway, at this moment I had realised I loved everything these guys did so I didn't think too long about getting "Insomniac". Personally, I like this CD a lot. As a follow-up to "Dookie", this was a bit rougher and had a darker undertone. I knew from the moment I heard the upbeat drumming on Armatage Shanks I was gonna love it to death and I had no idea what kind of ride I was getting on.

First of all, "Insomniac" is one of Green Days most pop-"punk" moments. Their first CDs, (1,309 and Kerpklunk) were lyrically easy and accessible and even though the sound was raw, the songs were rather soft. "Insomniac" starts of with the drumming of "Armatage Shanks" , followed by a neat wave of powerchords a la Billie Joe Armstrong. The song is very straightforward and guitar-driven. This song sets the standard for this album, fast and furious. Next is a short hymn called Brat that easily could have fitted in on most Green Day albums, except maybe "Warning". The song is basically about a slob waiting for his inheritance and the death of his parents. This is also a stereotype for a song of "Insomniac", fast, heavy guitar-driven and wrath-filled lyrics. Reminds me of "The Grouch" of "Nimrod". One of the most punk-tunes you'll ever here from BJ and co. This song is followed by "Stuck With Me", which rides on the upbeat tempo of the previous songs. This has been released as a single and it surely is one of the best songs of this album. This song has every ingredient for a perfect Green Day pop-punk anthem. Some very distorted powerchords backed up by amazing furious drumming by Tré Next is "Geek Stink Breath" which is a little different than the previous songs, loud but a bit slower than the previous tracks. The song still has that same feeling as the other songs but I feel it lacks something and I'm not very fond of it. The bass is weak here, I'm barely hearing it in the chorus. The guitar is backed up by another guitar which makes almost everything drown in the sound of it. The lyrics are amusing, but not better than anything else on this album.

Next is "No Pride" which many people define as a filler, but I don't. The intro is great with guitars and then everything else comes in including Billie Joe's great vocals. The bass on this track is exceptional and it really shows Mike's true value to the band. Overall, everyone does their part great on this song. The lyrics by Billie Joe is awesome, as well as his guitar-work. The drums are very neat too I must say. Very upbeat and very great song. Following this is a song with a weird name, "Bab's Uvula Who"? . While sounding very like "No Pride" this song is a lot weaker, the guitar parts aren't interesting at all. The drumming is decent, so is the bass. The way BJ sings though is kind of interesting and a nice change for once. "86" kicks off with drums and then the trademarked guitar for this album comes in once again. This song is somewhat slower in the perspective of the other songs here, while still pretty upbeat and with full fledged lyrics a la Billie Joe once again. What Billie Joe is referring to as "There is no return from 86" I'm leaving to be unsaid. This is a good song, one of my early favorites of this album, it's a great listen. Finally, my favourite tune "Panic Song" is coming. It's the most standout song on the whole album and I wouldn't call it easy listening. It starts up with Mike frenetically stroking his bass-strings, followed by drums in ultrarapid playing almost as in the oldie "Longview". Half the song is instrumental and at the end the guitar comes in and everything is speeded up as much as it's possible before it calms down and Billie Joe comes in with his anger-filled vocals. The lyrics by Mr Armstrong is tremendous and the absolute highlight of this album. Many great quotes here. Next is a highly underrated song called "Stuart And The Ave." Great bassintro, great lyrics, great singing, this is a complete Green Day song. As every other song it's really upbeat, but this song has an emotional touch due to the lyrics. Mike's bassing here is on top of his line, one of his all time best.

A public favourite is "Brain stew". It starts of with just a guitar playing a very slow riff. This is basically the verse, with Billie singing to it. This is, personally, one of my least favourite Green Day song. It's very repetetive and boring. Even the interlude makes me feel absolutely nothing at all. Luckily, the song transcends into the next, a fiery amazing song called "Jaded". It consists mainly of a chaos between fast riffs, really loud and fast drumming by Tré and some furious bassing by Mike. BJ sings really really fast and this song works as an anthem for the whole record. Next is another underrated and wrongly called filler song, the name is "Westbound Sign". Even though it rides on the same formula as both "Bab's Uvula Who"? and "No Pride" it's still a great listen. The guitar stands out here and the lyrics are good. It's no way the best song here, but it's also far from the worst. "Tight Wad Hill" that follows is basically "Westbound Sign" with different (and much less interesting) lyrics, a clear filler track. As always, very upbeat and almost exactly same tempo as "Westbound Sign" and "No Pride" and even though the formula works well, this song fails to live up to the ones previously mentioned. The CD ends with a sweet little thingy by the name of "Walking Contradiction" where Billie Joe handles the topic of selling out, a wide topic in the world of punk rock. The songs stands out, being a lot slower and the music leaves place for Billie's singing which makes the song really good.

On "Insomniac" Green Day took the sound from "Dookie" and turned the volume up even more. All of the songs here are upbeat, fast and furious. While "Warning" clearly is Green Day's most "poppy" album I'm quite convinced I'm allowed to call "Insomniac" their most "punky"-album. Overall it's one of my favourite Green Day records.

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

This album is recommended to you...
...that liked the more fast songs from "Dookie".
...that isn?t afraid of powerchords.
...that can accept seeing the (somewhat) small amount of punk in Green Day.

This album is NOT recommended to you...
...that is big fan of "Warning" and doesn't like "Nimrod".
...that is fond of long songs.
...that is expecting something as revolutionary as "Dookie".



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Comments:Add a Comment 
masada
June 13th 2006


2733 Comments


This album is pretty boring. Most Green Day albums are anymore.

Isola
June 13th 2006


421 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I have no idea why my bold song titles disappeared :/

La Revolucion
June 13th 2006


1060 Comments


Fine review, OK album, blah blah blah...

/Vague comment

stinkypoptart
June 13th 2006


1169 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i like this album a lot. would this be technically a punk album cause im not too sure or not. i havent listened in a while. its pretty good.

tom79
June 13th 2006


3372 Comments


^pop punk..

pretty good review, its been a while since I listened to a GD album in full, but I don't think im startin soon

Digging: Karate - Some Boots

Laafe
June 13th 2006


347 Comments


GD is one of those bands you like when you are 9, 10, 11, 12. this is really pretty boring. at least the review made it sound good.

The Sludge
June 13th 2006


2169 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

that is fond of long songs.

..... nice!

Isola
June 14th 2006


421 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Not any votes? Come on guys

rollercoaster
June 25th 2006


19 Comments


Alltid s imponerande. Kul att lsa, srskilt d du som i brjan berttar lite kring albumet och bandet, egna erfarenheter och s. Du r s duktig lskling

herb2
November 6th 2006


31 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Green Day's best album by far. Love the agression and gotta love the straight punk

Isola
November 10th 2006


421 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Aye, if you're in the right mood, this album really rocks.

MrKite
November 10th 2006


5020 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

great cd.



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