7TH OCTOBER / REPRISE RECORDS / LIKE IT
In a week where Green Day, Sum 41, Alter Bridge and NOFX all released new records I’ve begun to feel like I’m 14 again. These four artists summed up my prime puberty years by providing all of the guitar riffs to satisfy and encourage my erratic bouts of angst and desire to stay up way past my bedtime. They moulded me into the badass that hung around the Skatepark and didn’t even care to pick up a skateboard, the guy who’d have cereal without any milk – I miss those days.
Green Day return to the music scene with the release of new album Revolution Radio, a record which sees the veterans of pop punk deliver a sound that scraps the rock-opera tones of ‘American Idiot’ and the oversaturated ‘Uno! Dos! Tre!’ trilogy and heads right back to the basics. Lead single ‘Bang Bang’ reignited my teenage excitement for the band, as it’s punchy riffs came packed with a strong theme that hits the nail on the head with the amount of press murderers receive in the USA, and I still cannot get over Tre’s drum solo/trill towards the end of the track.
The band have shifted into a more mellowed sound in their later years which has often brought some hit and miss moments throughout the tail-end of their discography. This is something that exists on Revolution Radio too, as the band kick off the record with ‘Somewhere Now’ which features a lot of acoustic guitars, soft harmonies and simple hooks – it’s not exactly the start I was expecting after hearing ‘Bang Bang’ but Green Day do spice things up by throwing in occasional spurts of distortion throughout, allowing the record to reach the volume we’d typically associate with them.
Revolution Radio does have it’s fair share of loud moments too. The title track is a gutsy affair with tons of drum rolls, explosive choruses and hooks to showcase Green Day’s effortless talent in creating catchy pop punks tunes. ‘Bouncing Off the Wall’ has a kind of bouncy ‘Know Your Enemy’ vibe to it, and while it’s not my favourite, ‘Say Goodbye’ has a lo-fi quality to it which always piques my interest.
It’s a record that welcomes Green Day firmly into the eardrums once again. Gone are the days of the band being completely anti-everything as their material seems to stick firmly to the ‘Jesus of Suburbia’ theme outside of the occasional shot at the government and politics. These guys aren’t expected to produce another ‘Dookie’ or ‘American Idiot’ but for what it is, Revolution Radio is pretty good.