Thursday, July 30, 2009

Green Day, Part II

Anyway, since this is a music blog, I really should speak about the music. As I said before, the band played well. I totally understand that they have to promote their new album and play loads of tracks off it, but frankly, I really haven't gotten into the new music yet. I often criticize fans of anything from TV shows to bands to book series for not accepting new offerings- I believe that fans are impossible to please sometimes. They always mindlessly bash new offerings without even giving them a chance. I understand, however. It usually takes a while to warm up to something new. Not so much new episodes of TV shows, but usually a new album takes a few listens before you get to like it. A lot of Green Day fans automatically discounted American Idiot (2004) simply because it was new. To make matters worse, it was overplayed on the airways, leading a lot of fans to fall back on the whole "selling out" line.

Has Green Day sold out? Obviously. Does that fact alone necessarily mean the quality of their music has declined? Not always. Selling out and quality decline should be mutually exclusive, but people always associate the latter with the former. When Warning (2000) came out, people accused Green Day of being sellouts. But Warning is a fantastic album. More on that later, if I decide to do a whole series of Green Day-related entries (which I might just do).

Anyway, at this point, I can only say that I sort of like the new album. It's not "terrible" as many fans automatically said after their first listen. Know Your Enemy and Last Night On Earth are pretty damn good tracks, with the latter reflecting some Beatles-esque qualities. Some of the writing I feel is lazy. If you want to branch off into other styles besides punk rock, do so. If you want to stay hard and punk rock, do that. A lot of songs sound off quiet and always end with the same hard rock sound, which makes the album a little predictable and homogenous after a while. But there's nothing wrong with that.

The lyrics, as always, are fantastic. I will give that to Billie Joe- he has always been a top-notch poet. And maybe I am just being unfair, but I am still kind of on the fence about this new album. But like I said, it takes a while to learn to like new offerings sometimes. Maybe, what is most frustrating, is that Green Day is still trying to be punk rock (in look, and in Billie Joe's attitude on stage), while trying to offer something deeper and more mature. I can't really speak for Mike Dirnt and Tre Cool- they hardly spoke during the show. But Billie Joe acts extremely immature on stage. If you are going to "sell out" (as the punk kids like to say), that's all well and good, but give all or nothing. Don't still try to act "punk" when you're 37 years old and when you are trying to demonstrate, through your music, that there is more to your being than three chords and anger.

More to follow.

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