“Bang Bang”, the first single from Green Day’s forthcoming album, Revolution Radio, was released today, and yes: it’s a BANG that hits you right in the stomach. Green Day is back! This is punk rock at its best – pure energy combined with heavy provocative lyrics.
This is the best from the two sides of Green Day: it’s political and theatric like American Idiot and 21st Century Breakdown, but with the raw punk rock sound from the ’90’s. This time they haven’t worked with a producer, just a studio technician, which is really a bold choice: this means their own ideas aren’t lost in the process. You can hear it in the heavy pounding of the drums, the massive bass lines and the unfiltered vocals.
“Bang Bang” clearly sets the tone for the upcoming record. In a video published on Green Day’s Facebook page, Billie Joe gives a hint: “If you like ‘Bang Bang’, I think you’re gonna like the rest of the record”. Personally, I think that has been the case with all previous albums as well. From the first single, you know what you’re gonna get.
There’s no doubt Revolution Radio is going to be a political album. “Bang Bang” is written from a mass shooter’s point of view. In an interview with Rolling Stone, Billie Joe says: “It’s about the culture of mass shooting that happens in America mixed with narcissistic social media. There’s this sort of rage happening, but it’s also now being filmed and we all have ourselves under surveillance. To me, that is so twisted. To get into the brain of someone like that was freaky. It freaked me out. After I wrote it, all I wanted to do was get that out of my brain because it just freaked me out.”
However, it’s not just a song with provocative lyrics, but also a catchy tune that sticks. It can be compared to “Know Your Enemy”, the lead single from 21st Century Breakdown in 2009. It gave an indication of what the album was about while also being a radio hit that worked for itself. The single “American Idiot” from the 2004 album American Idiot served more as an introduction to a story in that it demonstrated right from the start it would be a political concept album. Revolution Radio will not be a quite like that, but rather “a collection of songs about the chaotic state of America in 2016” according to Rolling Stone.
Revolution Radio is due on October 7th.