By P Blood
Summing up my initial reactions to Green Day’s newest offering, Uno, in one word, I would have to say, ‘disappointment’… Disappointment because I can’t – with good conscience – hate on them anymore!
Dookie was, and is, one of the great albums that helped revive the punk movement in the 90’s. Uno is the revival of the band that made Dookie. Not that fucking pseudo-emo band that they were recently.
This is the greatest tale of redemption since Ogre switched from the Alpha Betas to the Tri-Lambs in Revenge of The Nerds II: Nerds in Paradise. From the horrible poppy U2-esk ear-rape that was American Idiot (and that other album not worth mentioning that got them featured on shows like American Idol) to this, this ode to awesome pop punk.
It’s as if after making a few good albums, Green Day started to eat themselves assholes first but, somehow defying physics, started shitting themselves out at the same time, and once they had completely devoured themselves – toenails and all – they had reverse shit themselves out reborn! Ready to make good music again! I’m pretty sure this analogy is similar to something Black Holes do…
Nuclear Family sets the tone for Uno right out of the gate. Who doesn’t love a play on words mocking puritan values? It’s fast paced, catchy as fuck, and just a touch reminiscent of the kind of pop Malcolm MacLaren would’ve wrung out of some teenagers in 1980.
Stand out tracks for me include: Let Yourself Go, an anthem for consequence-be-damned antics (my favourite kind of antic, personally). Teenagers everywhere will be pogoing like they’re on dangerous amounts of amphetamines and caffeine without even knowing what pogoing is. Those little darlings… Kill the DJ is dripping with The Clash, and is quite a novel song when popular music today is so heavily dominated by DJ’s and electronic music. Plus, neither of these two tracks are even close to being eligible for a radio-friendly edit.
The rest of the album is a lot of sappy, lovey-dovey pop, but in a kind of gnarly way, that will make virgins swoon but still feel like they’re edgy. It’s not Sid and Nancy romances or anything like that. Green Day was never that kind of punk rock. They were the easily accessible introduction that parents would still buy their kids – but in actuality opened their kids up to punk in the broader sense. For example, Troublemaker is going to give a lot of teenage girls the final nudge to do something naughty with the stoner kid with spikey hair that lives down the road. Oh that reminds me! Green Day, 13 year-old P. Blood thanks you for them stinky fingers.
I will say that the closing track, Oh Love, is a bit of a let-down. I get the feeling they were desperately trying to channel some sort of stadium power pop vibe that they can’t do justice to.
If you thought Green Day was gone forever, you were wrong. They were cool once, and thankfully they are cool once more. At least until the whole process of eating themselves asshole first starts again. Uno is the first in a trilogy of albums though, so hopefully this momentum carries through. Just remember, this is music for teenagers, not the nearly 30 set. Go into it with that in mind, and you might find yourself enjoying what you teethed your music chops on.
If you had any doubts as to the credibility of Billie Joe Armstrong’s “punk” cred, watch his almighty, epic rant at the record/radio industry in America below. This, after being snubbed by the producers of a televised ‘music festival’, who were cutting Green Day’s performance time down and then telling him he only had one minute left to play.
The band announced that Billy Joe was packed off to rehab two days later… If I were to hedge a bet, I’d say it was the PR monkeys trying to make excuses before the industry bridges were really burnt to hell.
These antics are… brilliant, really. Whether this a true sign of Green Day’s return to being more punk and less sold out pop, or a cleverly planned publicity stunt, remains to be seen. I, for one, am just happy that the likes of a Johnny Rotten-esque, indigent outburst is still even a possibility in this day in age.
Until then, we’re left with, “God fucking love you all. We’ll be back.”
Suffering from an inexplicably large ego and ignoring common courtesy, Mr P. Blood indulges his opinions about whatever comes to his cesspool of a mind, and strangely people don’t seem to hate him for it. Making him a writer, of sorts.