Having overstretched themselves with their 2012 album ¡Uno!, ¡Dos!, ¡Tré!, punk trio Green Day were on the edge of becoming obsolete. Making an explosive return in 2016, Green Day’s new album Revolution Radio revitalises the punchy punk tunes that every rebellious teenager grew to love.
The time is ripe for Green Day to dig their way back into relevance, with America on the verge of electing another ‘American Idiot’ into the office. And so we have Revolution Radio, the trio taking us back to the punk world with power chords, combustible drum tumult and snarling vocals accompanied by two or three piece harmonies. The fact that their near-contemporaries Blink 182 had a No. 1 album this year shows that there is still a conglomerate fan base of pop punk veterans who have probably waited too long for the next proper Green Day release.
To be expected, with the US election quickly approaching, American angst makes a biting return with heavily political themes being an important part of the twelve track album. The standout track of the album ‘Bang Bang’ criticises the media coverage of spree-shooting through manic chord progression and a spastic bassline, reminiscent of some of Green Day’s best. The tracks ‘Too Dumb To Die’, ‘Forever Now’ and their title track, also share nostalgic value with driving riffs similar to Nimrod, Dookie and American Idiot.
Although mostly a strong album, ‘Ordinary World’ and ‘Still Breathing’ lack spark and are heavily brought down by weak lyrics. One can’t help but feel vocalist Billie Joe Armstrong is exhausted and decided to twist and blend topics to create new material. Instead of being innovative, it comes out rather tiresome. It shares this same flaw from many of their albums that came out after American Idiot, and the sooner the band realise it just doesn’t work, the better.
Other than a couple bland tracks, Revolution Radio is littered with punk bangers that speak for all old and new Green Day fans. You would think that three elder statesmen creating music for the rebellious adolescence of today may sound a bit out of touch, but Green Day are back; mad and ready to thrash the album charts.
Don’t forget that Green Day are bringing their punchy punk riffs to Australia next year in the Revolution Radio tour. Check out the dates and how to get tickets here.
What are your thoughts on the new Green Day album? A welcome return or a disappointment for you? Comment below.