WCB Music Writer
Released – September 24, 2012
Label – Reprise
Producers – Rob Cavello, Green Day
Green Day “Uno!” (Reprise)
For those who loved Green Day in the beginning and lost faith in the band along the way – have no hesitation. The younger years that were seen during the hit record “Dookie” (1994) with songs such as “Basketcase” are back with the first album released of the trilogy, “Uno!” on September 24, 2012.
The second record, “Dos!,” will be released on Nov. 13 and the third “Tre!” will be released on Jan. 15. The band and Rob Cavallo produced the creations.
The ninth studio album represents the powerful pop-punk, edgy and at times hissy regardful lyrics. We saw this before pre-concept albums; however, this time the band is older and more spiteful than before.
Apparently fans that were devoted in the early years, despised the operatic direction with 2004’s political album “American Idiot” and 2009’s “21st Century Breakdown.” The albums brought in many fans that hadn’t listened to the pop-punk genre along Grammy acknowledgments. The storyline became so powerful it was turned into a mainstream Broadway musical “American Idiot.”
The essence of the album is adolescence. Green Day has indulged itself in the idea of its youth, not only with musical sound but lyrical matter. The 12 tracks take the audience through a pop-punk radio-friendly journey. Every song is fit for radio. This works well because it makes the album meaningful. Each song carries the capability of sticking to your memory, instead of the persistent urge of hitting the skip button on the Ipod.
A surprising twist of dance tunes and love songs are present. “Kill the DJ” is a repetitive catchy song that makes a musical statement far from the political rampage of the past. The attitude resembles the rebellious pulse that is represented in the veins of the genre. The carefree and deriding way that vocalist/guitarist Billie Joe Armstrong drones out each line brings to mind the musical style of The Ramones and upbeat pop feel as in “Let Yourself Go.”
As punk has done before, Green Day is putting society into perspective, as expected the mockery is present. “Nuclear Family” tears apart the lacking formation of people with a fast paced drumbeat and clever instrumentation. “Oh Love” is the definition of lust as adolescent emotions set fire the feeling of a heart-throbbed moment in time. “Far away, far away/Waste away tonight/I’m wearing my heart on a noose.”
The track “Sweet 16” is a perfect example of Armstrong’s trip down memory lane. “Old day are fine but are left so far behind/From California to Jane Street/Kids alright, alright as they’ll ever be/You’ll always be my Sweet 16.” As a band grows up throughout the decades it must figure out what’s next. We see this all the time in the comeback scene.
There are times in music when a band stops offering anything worth listening to and instead tries to re-create the founding album to keep success. Green Day is not one of those bands. This record proves that bassist Mike Dirnt, Drummer Tre Cool and Armstrong still understand what the culture of punk is really about. They take it to the next level each time and continue to experiment with maturity. Without a doubt this album is only a taste-test for the style of the next two releases. After this, you’ll be ready for more.