Green Day back with a “Bang Bang”

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Casey Lanza-Lang, Staff Writer

Four years, a stint in rehab, and a two cancer diagnoses later and American punk rock band Green Day has released their twelfth studio album. Revolution Radio is exactly what it sounds like: the start of a revolution. Frontman Billie Joe Armstrong uses his extraordinary songwriting powers to show how obviously messed up this world has become and how he feels about it. Whether he’s singing from a school shooter’s point-of-view in “Bang Bang” or the family of a police violence victim in “Say Goodbye”, it’s obvious that he’s angry at what the world looks like today.
On tracks such as the title track, “Revolution Radio”, and the first single, “Bang Bang,” the band is sure to express just how badly they “want to start a rager” and be sure to tell you everything they know about what is politically wrong with the United States along the way. With the consistently fast-paced and strong guitar riffs and drummer Tré Cool’s exploding drum solos accompanying these angry yet informative tracks, it feels like they stepped back into the glory days of Dookie. With the political references and calls for change, it feels like they stepped back into the even greater glory days of American Idiot.
On an opposite note, they slow it down a bit and give us heartfelt ballads about struggling with addiction and how much Armstrong loves his wife, Adrienne. “Still Breathing,” which follows the struggles of a drug addict, gambler, soldier, single mother, and other unique individuals going through a rough time, is a heavy, yet relatable song. It details the hard times of a plethora of different people, all going through entirely different things. As the chorus says, “I’m still breathing, I’m still breathing on my own”, it’s possible to work through the rough patches and come out strong.
The following track on the album is titled “Youngblood”, which is definitely a bit lighter than the previous track. “Youngblood” is clearly written for Armstrong’s wife. He explicitly states in the lyrics that the Youngblood in question is from Oakland, the city that he, his wife, and two children call home. He then goes on to say “She’s the cedar in the trees of Minnesota”, which just so happens to be where his wife is from. Twenty-two years of marriage and we’re still hearing loving lyrics about Adrienne Armstrong. Way to make us jealous of your incredibly successful relationship, Billie Joe.
Giving us a healthy dose of anger, sadness, happiness, politics, love, and hope for better days, Green Day has lived up to their potential for the twelfth time. It’s obvious that they didn’t let Billie Joe’s rehab, guitarist Jason White’s cancer, or bassist Mike Dirnt’s wife’s cancer, stop them. They took the time they needed to support their families and when they could, they came back stronger than ever, leaving us fans impressed and satisfied until album number thirteen hits the shelves.