Friday 21 September 2012

Green Day - ¡Uno!

It's interesting that Green Day release their latest album '¡Uno!' just a week before Muse.  Not only are both bands on Warner labels, but both have been around for the long term and have seen shifts in their fan bases - as their sounds have evolved they've both lost and gained fans.  Recently, an article on NME entitled "Help! I Think I'm Falling Out Of Love With Muse" highlighted the distinction between the band's older and more recent albums and their subsequent fan bases.  The same can be said of Green Day - those who enjoyed 'Dookie' and 'Nimrod' aren't necessarily those that enjoyed 'American Idiot' or '21st Century Breakdown'.

So which set of fans does '¡Uno!' apply to?  Where Muse have continued to develop their sound into the realms of excess, Green Day have gone back to their punk roots, which should appeal to older fans.  Perhaps having their music used in a musical has reminded the band of what made them popular in the first place.

But is it enough?  Where newer fans may prefer their more recent hits such as American Idiot or power ballad Boulevard of Broken Dreams, older fans will simply reminisce on the band's beginnings.  The songs on '¡Uno!' simply can't live up to the band's greatest from either period.  

The song titles sum up the band in their current state:
Let Yourself Go
Kill The DJ
Rusty James
Past Our Best

OK, that last one I made up.  However, although their music might sound fresh in comparison to the DJ-centric electro currently in the charts, the band are relying too much on past success to carry the album rather than providing a decent set of songs.  Nothing on '¡Uno!' can match the classic sing-along of Basket Case, the emotive power of Good Riddance (Time of Your Life) or the punk message of American Idiot.  Instead, we have a set of songs with little variation and lacking the hooks of their best tracks.

'¡Uno!' is the first of three albums ('¡Dos!', '¡Tré!') to be released in the coming months, but after listening to this, it indicates that perhaps the band should have focused on just one quality album.


Gizzle's Choice:
* Nuclear Family
* Oh Love

Listen: '¡Uno!' is released on September 24th (with a stream currently on the NME website). '¡Dos!' and '¡Tré!' will follow on November 12th and January 14th respectively.

Watch: Green Day will tour the UK next summer.