Green Day – American Idiot 

With American politics all over the news at the moment I felt it was time to revisit this album.

Purchase and Packaging

I didn’t buy this album when it was first released back in 2004, I think at the time I thought Green Days best days were behind them, how wrong was I?  Since my rediscovery of listening to and buying albums this one has been on the list to make up for its omission upon release.

I was lazy this month as its been a busy period so ordered this from Amazon for the very low price of £15.99.  Its a single album spread over two 180 gram vinyl records in a gatefold sleeve.

The front cover is so simple and extremely striking, those three strong contrasting colours really help sell what the album is all about.  It looks good on the extra space given by the vinyls size.  It is defiantly one that could be put in a frame and hung on the wall as art.

First Listen

The album kicks straight in with a great crowd pleasing high tempo track with loads of political lyrics.  Whats good though is it’s not done in a depressing way because the tempo on the tracks is so upbeat.  You get what they are trying to say but don’t feel like they are preaching it.

The overall style is not to different from previous Green Day albums; fast power chords and short tracks that fly by and stick in your head.  It’s not ground breaking musically but is so raw and simple you can’t help but enjoy it

The real change is the melding of the short tracks into one song that is broken down into parts.  Green Day have always been able to have an album that flows but each track was always separate, here they have 2 tracks broken into parts which just some how works brilliantly. They are separate but somehow connected and seem to change as each part starts and also seem to be part of the same song.  It also works better on vinyl as it has no stupid pauses between tracks like CDs or digital.  A great example of this is “We The Waiting” is a total sing along anthem that just finishes and “St Jimmy” just kicks straight in with no time to take a breath.

Having never owned this album on CD or digital I have nothing to compare it to but it does sound very clear.  Everything just balances together so well; the bass, drums, fast guitars and vocals all flow together brilliantly.  Especially when it goes quiet then suddenly kicks to the whole band playing.

“Wake Me Up When September Comes” is the only slow tempo song on the album and really shows that Green Day can do a so called “Ballard”.  It really gives Armstrong’s voice a real chance to shine, a great song and for me the stand out track on the whole album.

Listening to the album today it feels very relevant to the times we are living in, a lot of it was aimed at George Bush but it could now be used as to what Donald Trump is.  The album doesn’t seem to have aged at all, however its a shame that its messages is the same and the world hasn’t changed that much in the last 13 years.

Looking back over those 13 years I find it hard to find another American rock band to have this level of commercial success.  Is this the last commercially successful and popular American rock band album???

Final Thoughts

Green day have their style and this is the most easily accessible of their albums.  If life or the world of politics is bringing you down go and listen to this album, you will feel more upbeat after!

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