Green Day's Father Of All... - What You Need To Know
For a band that started out in the inauspicious environs of California's early 90s punk scene, the last decade in the life and times of Green Day sometimes read like the activities of another band entirely.
After the grandiosity of 2009's Butch Vig-produced 21st Century Breakdown, their second album in a row to be described as a 'rock opera', Green Day attempted to inject a little more immediacy into their output by recording and releasing three albums in the same year – an idea which, in hindsight, seems like another grand idea from a band who seemed to be trying to get away from having grand ideas.
2016's Revolution Radio marked something of a return to their roots – one that frontman Bille Joe Armstrong described as "not so much a makeover as a make under” - slimming things down to just 12 tracks. Even then, Green Day still found room for the seven-minute three-parter 'Forever' and the odd orchestral flourish.
The follow-up arrives this week and takes that stripped-back approach to the next level, turning in an album with just 10 tracks and a total runtime of just over 26 minutes, making this their shortest album yet – shorter, even, than Kerplunk.
Sharing its name with the album's expletive-laden title track 'Father Of All Motherf***ers' – or just 'Father of All...' for short - Green Day's 13th studio album lands on the shelves in stores today. Here's everything you need to know...
A little background...
Since the release of Revolution Radio in 2016, the band have kept themselves busy with an extensive world tour, as well as finding time to put out their second Greatest Hits compilation God's Favorite Band in 2017, as well as the first ever vinyl release of the Woodstock 1994 performance, released early last year for Record Store Day.
The news of the band's 13th album followed the announcement of a huge triple-headliner tour with Fall Out Boy and Weezer, branded the Hella Mega Tour, which is set to kick off in March this year and run right through to November. The album announcement was also accompanied by the release of the new album's title track, which served as its first single.
Who's producing it?
Having self-produced their last album, this time the band have brought in Butch Walker and Chris Dugan to produce and engineer, making this their first album since 2009 to make use of an outside producer who isn't Rob Cavallo.
Any special guests?
Not unless we're counting Joan Jett, who appears on 'Oh Yeah' via the use of a sample of her 1982 hit 'Do You Wanna Touch Me'. It's their first ever song to feature a sample, and it's one that hasn't come without its problems – the song is a cover originally co-written by Gary Glitter, and in recognition of his crimes Green Day have pledged to donate all their royalties from the song to charities RAINN and the International Justice Mission.
What does it sound like?
Especially in comparison with their more recent albums, Father of All... feels like something of a short, sharp shock, but an entirely welcome one. Brimming with frenetic energy, songs like 'Oh Yeah' and 'Fire, Ready, Aim' provide the anthemic hooks Green Day have become known for. Elsewhere the album has everything you'd want from a Green Day record; loud, fuzzy guitars, frenetic drum rhythms and melodies that lodge themselves immediatly and immovably in your brain.
Does it deliver?
In some ways, Father of All... feels like the closest thing they've done to their early records for years. The new album has plenty of the restless energy present on albums like Dookie and Kerplunk, but the production is much more in the vein of their. You certainly wouldn't call it overproduced, but it's a much more polished sounding record than anything they'd have released in that era, and at 26 minutes long the album zips by so quickly you'll be hitting 'play' again in no time.