Music News

Green Day

Truth be told, bands are generally most innovative early in their career -- unless you're talking about Green Day, that is. In 1994, several years after establishing themselves on the Bay Area punk scene, Billie Joe Armstrong, Mike Dirnt and Tre Cool went national with Dookie, a disc that mashed familiar elements into ultra-accessible forms. Subsequent CDs had catchy moments as well, but they weren't particularly original -- and the comfort-food nature of 1997's "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)," a sincere strum-along ready-made for proms, was hardly a harbinger of more challenging material. Then, in 2004, the thirty-something Greenies unleashed American Idiot, a disc that combined their indisputable knack for hooky melodies and effective riffs with more artistic heft than they'd previously demonstrated. Idiot is so strong, in fact, that nothing is beyond the realm of possibility anymore. A fascinating new concept album by Foghat? Why not? A brilliant platter from Kenny Rogers? You bet! An enjoyable trip into the mind of Celine Dion? Sure thing! Thanks to Green Day, which visits Denver along with Jimmy Eat World, rules about the rock of middle ages have been revised. About time, too.
KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts