10 years after I bought ‘Dookie’ came this album by Green Day. No more hard punk or young kids, the band has become more rock and much more popular with the world. ‘American Idiot’ came out in 2004 as a punk rock opera album. Nothing too special about this album but just a few songs unfortunately, even though this album definitely tops the past few that was put out after ‘Dookie’.
The album tells a story of a man, Jesus of Suburbia, an adolescent anti-hero. Takes aim at the hate for the Iraq War, big corporations and how American treats teens. Even has other characters, St. Jimmy and Whatsername, who are basically good and evil. Through out you get a story about Jesus of Suburbia fighting his way through to an end of forgetting all.
As for the songs, you get a few big hits. Right off the bat is the title track and one of their best songs off the album. The song is louder and harder than they had been recently and quite catchy. Who doesn’t like a song that is called, “American Idiot.” Flip the first record over and you get a few good songs back to back. “Holiday” leads right into “Boulevard of Broken Dreams.” Both fit well on this album and lead off the second disc nicely.
There is one song on here I can’t stand and it became a HUGE hit for these guys. “Wake Me Up When September Ends” became 2x platinum and all over the charts. The song is about Billy Joe’s dad and his loss, which is beautiful. However, this is not the Green Day I knew and loved, which became too sappy and slow for me.
‘American Idiot’ was a big album at the time and eventually sold 16 million albums. It may not be one of the best albums ever but pretty damn good for Green Day. Nothing will ever be ‘Dookie’ but you can hear the maturation of these guys 10 years later. It would be a while until they did it again with “Revolution Radio” (which is next).