Album Review | ‘Father Of All…’ by Green Day

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Image from Rolling Stone

Okay, so I had a lot of feelings leading into this album, especially based off of the leading singles, and a part of me was ready to not talk about it at all and move on. So why are we here?

Well, because it’s actually not a bad album. In fact, it’s a really fun album. It’s kind of like watching a Mission: Impossible movie. There’s an epic scope, things explode sometimes, and there are even a few nods to the original material. It’s a fun time, but it doesn’t have much to say. And while I fully expect that from a MI movie, I was a little disappointed that Green Day would release an album that was mostly face-value.

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Highlights

I was really nervous about this album because I was afriad it would sound like another Green Day album…

I know that sounds strange since it is in fact a Green Day album regardless but I didn’t want it to feel like it was recycling from previous albums. The obvious reference to American Idiot for the album art really freaked me out because I don’t need another American Idiot–I have one already.

So the fact that this album doesn’t really sound like Green Day is actually a relieve for me. My early critique of the singles released wasn’t so much that the sound was different as it was that I wanted something more substantial. But we’ll get into that later.

This album feels a bit like a journey through rock music–if a scattered, round-about kind of journey. I actually really enjoy the soft-rock feel of Meet Me On The Roof. It has a swinging, summer feel to it that hearkens back to The Beach Boys and more doo-wop style bands of the 50’s and 60’s.

I also realized while re-listening to this album that the songs that made me dance a lot, Fire, Ready, Aim and Sugar Youth, were also the shortest–which I didn’t know the first couple times listening through.

Low Points

I think it’s pretty obvious what it was about this album that disappointed me: there’s wasn’t much depth. I’m not saying it had to be some big, thematic concept album but I was kind of hoping they’d have something interesting to say about the world because, you know, it’s been kind of terrible. I mean, there are so many things they could have used this album to talk about in classic “you suck!” Green Day fashion and they didn’t… For reasons I’m unaware of.

It’s kind of ironic given that they joke about the album literally being American Idiot part 2. I’ve listened to that album a lot–I’ve even seen the musical about it–and this album seems a bit directionless by normal standards, let alone compared to that album. Don’t get me wrong, this album is a bop and I love the exploration of new sounds, but it’s definitely in danger of being forgotten, especially given Green Day’s discography.

I realize that none of my criticism is specific and I think this is mostly because it isn’t a question of talent–I know that Green Day can write an amazing album. There’s nothing here that I can point to and say “that was awful” because that isn’t why I have a problem with the album.

Also, the unicorn thing? Why? Just stop.

Favourite Track: Junkies on a High

One of the reasons I was drawn to this song was that it was nothing like what I would expect from Green Day–but it a great way. Like, this is a great song but I would never have thought it would be written by this band.

I think this might go against the song though, especially for people who know Green Day’s music better than I do. While I’ve heard a lot of it, this is not a band who’s music I could recognize a few seconds into a song like some people can. So it might be too jarring to hear this new angle that the band has gone–for multiple songs on this album besides this one.

I love the lazy, tripping sounding drums and guitar that start off this track. It fits well with what the song is about. Then there are all the other sounds that layer in as the song continues–like the weird shut-down sound during the second verse; love that every time even though I know it’s coming. This album has some trippy sounds throughout, like in Take the Money and Crawl, but this song kind of perfects it. It feels disorienting and a little out of place in the best way.

The way the instrumentation cuts out at the end of the chorus then comes back for “burn” is pretty cool too.

Rating: 3/5

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Honestly? Fun album but they’re better than that.

I know it’s a lot of pressure to put on them and there’s nothing wrong with wanting to write fun music. My expectations were pretty low going into this album and they definitely impressed me more than I was expecting. But it feels like there wasn’t enough effort put into it, like they threw together some songs and decided that would be the album.

I feel like they should have taken more time to figure out what they wanted from the album–they’re an album making band and it would be sad to see them go the route of single-making instead.

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