It’s been four long years since the punk-rock trio Green Day released “Tré,” their latest studio album before taking a break from the spotlight for various reasons.
Their latest work, “Revolution Radio” takes a one giant leap forward from its predecessors and captures the essence of what Green Day is – three guys from Oakland making music amidst the turmoil of the modern world.
The opening track “Somewhere Now,” has a hint of Who-influence, a slower paced song compared to the three-chord songs that have defined punk-rock for so long. The song’s crescendo is epic in scope and power, followed by an acoustic melody that returns later in the album.
Lyrics like “Hallelujah I found my soul, under the sofa pillows,” show that singer Billie Joe Armstrong and Green Day as a whole have matured so much in their 25 plus years in action.
Meanwhile, politically charged “Bang Bang,” “Revolution Radio,” “Say Goodbye” and “Troubled Times” deliver the same punch that’s on par with their 2004 album “American Idiot.”
The drum fill at the end of the album’s debut single “Bang Bang” is an absolute blast, highlighting Tré Cool’s prowess, command and aggression over his kit.
“Where’s the truth in the written word, if no one reads it?” Armstrong asks in “Troubled Times,” questioning the current state of modern media.
Songs like “Outlaws” and “Youngblood” show Armstrong’s softer side in the album, with lyrics hinting towards his wife, but still hitting hard lyrically and instrumentally.
Bassist Mike Dirnt’s harmonies with Armstrong have been on point since their first studio album “1039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hours” and are still a vital part of Green Day’s sound to this day.
Other songs like “Bouncing Off The Walls” and “Too Dumb To Die” capture spirits of the Green Day of old, channeling hints of their albums “Dookie” and “Nimrod” in all the most endearing fashion.
“My name is Billie and I’m freaking out,” he declares at the start of the 7-minute rock opera “Forever Now.”
The song then progresses through a variety of themes before returning to the acoustic melody from “Somewhere Now,” bringing the album full circle.
The final track “Ordinary World” is the simplest song on the album, with just Billie Joe Armstrong and his acoustic guitar.
“Where can I find the city of shining light In an ordinary world?” he reflects, drawing the album to a melodically beautiful close.
While “Uno,” “Dos,” and “Tré” may have been considered the ‘trilogy’ in their own right, the true Green Day trilogy is “American Idiot,” “21st Century Breakdown” and “Revolution Radio,” all for the best reasons.
“Revolution Radio” is a retrospective work surely, but it still has the attitude and feeling that earns Green Day the reputation as legends that they deserve.
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