Green Day



by ReturnToRock USER (303 Reviews)
May 9th, 2005 | 13 replies

Release Date: 1995 | Tracklist

After the multi-platinum success of their previous album, «Dookie», Green Day were in a bit of a rut. On the one hand, they wanted to evolve; on nthje other hand, if they changed their sound too much, critics and fans alike would lambast them. So in their fourth outing, «Insomniac», the band wisely opted for a compromise.

As soon as «Armatage Shanks» starts up, it feels like «Dookie» all over again. In fact, this song is so close to «Chump» or «Sassafras Roots» it nearly borders on self-plagiarism. «Brat» and «stuck With Me» do little to dispel this notion. But then along comes «Geek Stink Breath», which starts on a Clashian riff and evolves into a rhythm section reminiscent of «When I Come Around». «No Pride» is a rip-snortin’, take-no-prisoners punk rock anthem that ranks among the best this album has to offer; while «Brain Stew» could have been an attempt to cash in on nu-metal, if not for the fact that it hadn’t even been invented yet. :D And the album goes on in this guise, with the «Dookie»-esque songs siding up with some valid punk-rock experimentation to create a wholesome album.

But of course, this is not without its flaws. The main one concerns choruses. There is simply nothing as immediately effective here as there was on «Dookie», and even the best choruses on this one will need a couple of extra listens in order to sink in. The noteworthy exception is «Stuart and the Ave.», which ironically ranks as the best song on the album. Another weak point are songs like «86» and «Panic Song», that sound like mere filler, with Billie Joe’s «social misfit» lyrics starting to sound a bit cliché and ready-made. But they are fully compensated by the stronger numbers, and overall this is one that, unlike follow-up «Nimrod», is sure to please the fans.


1 – Armatage Shanks – The album starts up, and it sounds like «Dookie» hasn’t finished yet. A song so similar to certain numbers on «Dookie» that you can’t help but frown. Still a great punk rock tune, though. (3,5/5)

2 – Brat – An improvement on the former tune with a helplessly catchy chorus and delightful lyrics about, well, a brat. Still too close to «Dookie» for comfort, but we’re going somewhere. (4/5)

3 – Stuck With Me – Good punk rock tune that sounds like Green Day without sounding like «Dookie». Another insanely catchy chorus once you learned it… (4,5/5)

4 – Geek Stink Breath – This one will seem kinda blah at first, but then ypu get to chorus and you find that it’s actually an excellent slab of what is generally called «melodic hardcore». (4/5)

5 – No Pride – Ooh yeah! All the GD trademarks are here, from Mike Dirnt’s inventive bass fills to Tre Cool’s acrobatic drums. The result is one of the best songs on this album, and indeed GD’s catalogue. (5/5)

6 – Bab’s Uvula Who" – Another very famous, but frankly kinda blah, song. Pure filler (3/5)

7 – 86 – More filler. Despite good riffing, the chorus fails to deliver. (2,5/5)

8 – Panic Song – And yet more filler, as a long buildup develops into a fairly uninteresting slab of generic punk rock . (2/5)

9 – Stuart and The Avenue – Now THIS is more like it! Absolutely the best song on the album, with a delightful little bass run in the beginning and great shout-along lyrics throughout. Brilliant (5/5)

10 - Brain Stew – This starts off sounding like a revamped «Clash City Rockers», then develops into a stomping, metal-tinted anthem sure to rock your socks off (5/5)

11 – Jaded – This album’s version of «In The End». No more than average, but good chorus. (3,5/5)

12 – Westbound Sign – Another good song that lacks a little more chorus. (3,5/5)

13 – Tight Wad Hill – Another great chorus in a driving song about a junkie (I think-… :p) (4,5/5)

14 – Walking Contradiction – A good ending note for this album, slightly reminiscent of the slower songs from Rancid. (3,5/5)

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Comments:Add a Comment 
May 9th 2005


pretty good revew. i like a couple sonngs on this album but your right dookie is better, but everyone knows that so my ensing wors are this album is pretty good.

May 9th 2005


your review really didnt tell me anything. a little more info on each song.

May 9th 2005


i disagree with you on your song ratings and descriptions. many deserve higher ratings, and some you over-rated. panic song and jaded, for examples.

May 10th 2005


Album Rating: 4.0

«our destiny is dead/in the hands of bad luck»

«you're mommy's little nightmare/driving daddy's car around»

«i'm the king of fools...»

All taken from «Stuart and the Avenue». Social Distortion references?!

May 10th 2005


Album Rating: 4.0

It's their best album a mon avis.

and as for the "while «Brain Stew» could have been an attempt to cash in on nu-metal, if not for the fact that it hadn’t even been invented yet."

comment, nu-metal was invented in 1994. this album coming out in 1996, im afraid you're wrong on two counts. (it's not cashing in at all, its doing something different)

keep writing and you'll get better.

May 10th 2005


Man best album my ass ok Dookie hands down giving that it is a stoner punk pop record is their best. . . But if you like their actual punk stuff Slappy Hours is the CD for you. . . also jsut my input on AI You have to love it and hate it because its a revolution to go down in the punk history books but also at the same time your kinda losing what made this band (my favorite band inthe whole world) great in the first place, but warning just didnt cut it in they needed a change. . . = )

May 10th 2005


Ok review, but IMO Westbound Sign and 86 are the best songs on it. Stuart and the Ave. has an awesome bass line though.

June 18th 2005


The two paragraphs in the beggining are great. I think that you should just lose the track-by-track.

Insomniac is Green Day's third best, in my opinion.

June 19th 2005


Its better than american idiot
but not as good as Dookie or Warning

Electric City
September 10th 2005


Album Rating: 4.0

This is a very good record. Your 3 "filler" tracks though are 3 of my favorite songs. No Pride is the filler. Stuart is pretty average. Armatage Shanks is my favorite song thats not on international superhits. And yer review sucks. I think ill make one for this...

September 14th 2005


i actually think this one is better than dookie mostly for the speed and Stuck With Me is my favorite song, everyone should go get this cd

March 28th 2013


This is a very old review. We all know what's happened ever since.

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