Review Summary: Disclaimer: There are poop jokes proceeding in the following unnecessary review.
Straight from the realms of a punky poppy boy band roots, Green Day has submitted their way into the pre-teen wet dream fantasies hall of fame along with New Kids On The Block and Bon Jovi. As hardcore as a baby diaper, Green Day played the brutal Berkeley punk scene until the big suits chased after them, taking them to Disney world to persuade them selling-out is the way to go. I guess it took Billie Joe in a dark shady room with Mickey and Mickey Jr. to sell his soul to Reprise records. POOF! Dookie was born in February 1994. There it was, simple 3 chord structures was the it
thing to do. Soon, 12 year olds paraded the streets on skateboards and green mohawks with Green Day patches. Sickened at the sudden success, the Berkeley crowd had enough of this pop muzik and started pooping in their sinks. The band took it hard, they pitied over their sudden loss. Now what do they do? Play the same 3 chords... faster
. Insomniac is the bastard child in the GD library. You know, the underappreciated scapegoat whom's efforts went unnoticed because not it wasn't as smart or as big as the "older" child was (***ers).
Once they came to terms with their metrosexual brand of punk music, Nimrod came out in a big way. Not being memorable for doing anything different, yet paved a solid sound for longetivity down the road. Warning reminds me of the old grandpa sitting on the porch with a Lucky Strike, telling stories stories on how to live life. Very rootsy and actually quite a boring listen coming from the once hXc Berkeley punk group. Now with a total Queer Eyed make over and a silly little concept. Green Day is back to take their thrones of the overplayed pop assho
les of the universe.
American Idiot is a romp through a so called "punk-opera." Along with the punk-opera comes two completely over hyped, yet vaguely interesting 9 minute 'epics'. The reason I placed the word 'epic' in paraphrasing tones, is because they are just a mesh of shorter Green Day songs blended to make 9 minutes. Nothing like actual 9 minute songs you can hear from many metal/prog acts. Jesus Of Suburbia is very catchy. Bring forth the thickening silly little plot which is refered to throughout the album. Angsty, yet not losing the signature bubble punk GD has been known for. Homecoming is the closest song that can carry such a label as an opera sound. With more mood swings than your pedophile uncle on cocaine, Homecoming varies with depth on instrumental playing, which isn't found too much on here. Tre Cool makes his first vocal appearance since the hidden track on Dookie with part 4 "Rock and Roll Girlfriend." And releases one of my favorite taglines to use on my mother "Nobody likes you, everyone left you. They're all out without you, having fun."
She hates it, since she is already contemplating driving her entire family into a lake, killing us all. That kidder she is. Anyways, lyrically the album is different than previous efforts because of the plot line. It does seem the plot line doesn't lead anywhere, instead looping itself in a familiar pattern.
See what happens when aging veteran punkers try to capture the limelight once again? They claim to create a work of art that will revolutionize the pop world and waiting for bites. Over 5 million bites to be exact. Perhaps they should have learned to write something that hasn't been written umpteen times before, or put some fatal earwigs within each bait they've set out. Sure, the concept idea is unique in a way and will more in likely spark a new fad in the future with many useless concept albums to come. But the musicianship has became more dull over the years. Billie Joe for the most part kept it simple, without expanding as much as his ego has. Also, if he wears any more 'guy'liner, I think I'm going to puke up my ham sandwich. Mike Dirnt (with some special exceptions in the 9 minute 'epics') follows along with Billies mildly played guitar licks. And who is this dip**** performing on stage with them, why doesn't he have a spot in the band as he does provide many good fills on guitar to pick up on Billie's slack. Tre Cool is the exception to the sad progression as a musician line-up. He is still more wild than ever and keeps my interest in this shish-kabob of an album.
Many older fans bitch and moan on how they've abandoned their past sound for a more conforming pop-culture way of life. Yes and no.
The Green Day that you know and love is still here. And is more evident in tracks like St. Jimmy, which can sound like it can be in albums from Dookie to Nimrod. The title track American Idiot's ear catching ever so recognizable guitar lick, which (like some of past material) is hard to shake out of your head. Holiday can also be found on past GD material, if it wasn't for the political turn of lyrics that proceeded. And my personal favorite Letterbomb, which is placed perfectly on the album to recapture my wandering interest. Letterbomb to me is a summary on why Green Day has been in my musical library in the past. Keeping a frantic pace while not overdoing it, Letterbomb starts off with my mothers favorite "Nobody likes you" line and comes in with clean power chords. This song actually reminds me of Kerplunk days in a way. Also gives a nice uplifting line "It's not over 'til you're underground." Sure, it's no Eye Of The Tiger, but it fuels my fire.
The counterpoint to the same Green Day you know, is that they quite possibly try too hard. Trying too hard to give off the impression that they've came of age too firmly. Are We The Waiting wants to be so much more. It wants to be living proof that Green Day's past of catchy hooks and simple song structures are a thing of the past. Yet falters because it fails to produce anything different outside of their sound. Two words to describe the track. Boring and repetitive. The chorus drags thought the end, making the song seem a lot longer than the 2:45 it was given. Whatsername I actually quite liked. It touched me in a place that isn't near my belt buckle. It's one of 2 ballad like songs and it happens to be the last track. It's about a girl whom got away, and wondering how she's doing. The instrumentals are simple, but does its job. The next ballad type of song is Wake Me Up When September Ends. In which is about the pains as a boy to deal with his fathers death. This song feels more epic than the 9 minute songs, being it's near 5 and it feels that way. Simply the best single from the album.
In conclusion, I would like to state that Green Day growing up has always been apart of my life. Since my aunt gave me a copy of Dookie on cassette on my birthday in 1994. Throughout the years it has helped to develop my taste in music since the tender age of 8. Now since this album was released, and also the aftermath. I've grown to realize how the attitude of the band has changed. It seemed they've used to be fun loving party punkers, but now a deeper serious tone has taken over. That doesn't take away that this is a solid album. The effort shows and perhaps they deserved the success they have received. Although I have very little hopes for the fading future of Green Day.
The Sludge's Thumb Ups:
Wake Me Up When September Ends