After a lengthy four years since their last proper studio album, punk rock band Green Day is back with one of the most hyped albums of the year American Idiot. Green Day of course was one of the biggest bands of the mid ‘90s and the band scored a huge success with its Dookie album now over 10 years ago. Many people (including myself) thought Green Day was finished, but the band has proven us all wrong coming back with the punk rock opera American Idiot. Having never been a big Green Day fan and because of all the hype surrounding American Idiot, I very badly wanted to dislike this album, but after giving it a couple of listens, I was stunned and very pleasantly surprised.

Staying consistent with the theme of a rock opera, the songs on American Idiot flow in a way that the album is telling a story as the listener listens to it. The main character is named Jimmy who is mentioned several times throughout the various songs. I am unsure of all the details of the back story that the album tries to tell, but if you’re interested, it’s all over the internet. The 13 track (21 tracks if you want to get technical) album starts off with the title track and first single “American Idiot” and while it’s a decent 3 minute punk song, it’s not even close to being one of the best songs on the album. While it’s not made especially obvious, the song “American Idiot” seems to be about U.S. president George W. Bush and the band’s dislike for him.

The best songs off the album come next, starting with the 5 parted 9 minute long “Jesus of Suburbia.” This is by far the best song off the album and it very well might be the best song of 2004 and one of my favorite songs ever. The song changes tempo every couple of minutes and really changes into a new song each time. Next comes the punkier “Holiday” which is another great, catchy song. The second single off American Idiot “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” comes next which in my opinion is the second best song on the album. Another standout track is the song “Are We The Waiting” which should likely surface as the next single. The song has an infectious chorus that has an anthem type feeling to it. Other standout tracks off the album include “Give Me Novacaine,” “Wake Me Up When September Ends” and the album finale “Whatsername.” As outstanding as some of the songs are off American Idiot, it also includes a few mediocre songs which aren’t terrible but aren’t particularly good. These include “St. Jimmy,” “Extraordinary Girl” and the second 9 minutes 5 parted song “Homecoming.”

Overall, American Idiot is surprisingly an absolutely stunning album. Even though it contains a few throwaways, the quality of the other songs more than make up for it. I never thought a band like Green Day would be capable of pulling off such a great album, but they proved me very wrong. The album has just been nominated for several Grammy Awards which the band is very deserving of. Even if you’re not a fan of Green Day’s past music, this album is still worth checking out because it is unlike anything Green Day has ever done. Overall, American Idiot is a must have and is definitely one of the best albums of 2004.  [ END ]

Track Listing:

01. American Idiot
02. Jesus of Suburbia
03. Holiday
04. Boulevard of Broken Dreams
05. Are We The Waiting
06. St. Jimmy
07. Give Me Novacaine
08. She’s a Rebel
09. Extraordinary Girl
10. Letterbomb
11. Wake Me Up When September Ends
12. Homecoming
13. Whatsername

Run Time: 57:12
Release Date: 2004