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Review: Green Day wows hometown crowd

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  • Brian's picture
    Review: Green Day wows hometown crowd
    April 17, 2013

    Billie Joe Armstrong acted like a man with a new lease on life.

    The Green Day leader was joyful, energetic and full of passion during his East Bay punk-pop band's sold-out concert at the Greek Theatre. He was happy to be home and performing for the first time in years in Berkeley. Heck, he was just happy period.

    "We're all alive," he exclaimed to the 8,500 fans in attendance. "We're all still (expletive) alive!"

    What we were witnessing in that moment was a man who had learned, perhaps the hard way, the importance of taking time to smell the roses.

    "With so much scary (expletive) going on right now, you've got to live every moment -- every (expletive) moment."

    It's safe to assume that he was referencing Monday's tragedy in Boston, but the vocalist-guitarist could've also been alluding to his own his recent experiences. His battle with substance abuse problems led him to rehab and threatened to crush Green Day's career.

    It's now an older, wiser Billie Joe Armstrong who fans are seeing take the stage. Yet, one that is no less fun than the previous model.

    Kicking off the show with this tour's namesake song, "99 Revolutions," Armstrong acted like a highly caffeinated kid in a candy shop for 2 ½ hours. He buzzed about the stage like a mad man, rarely staying still for more than a few seconds, while captivating the crowd with a ridiculous assortment of juvenile ways. He soaked fans with a water hose, shot both toilet paper and T-shirts into the crowd, and even cuddled onstage with a giant pink bunny.

    Ah, yes, the giant pink bunny. It was that costumed character that actually opened the band's set, and provided the one really questionable moment of the night. The bunny staggered about the stage with a drink in each hand, chugging them to the sounds of the Ramones and other lively acts.

    Of course, Green Day has never been shy about poking fun at itself. Yet, that the guzzling bunny bit felt inappropriate for a band with a lead singer who recently got out of rehab.

    The toilet paper shtick, however, was great.

    The quartet -- yes, Green Day is now a quartet, having recently added longtime sideman-guitarist Jason White as an official member -- is touring in support of three new albums. The group released "Uno!," "Dos!" and "Tre!" during a span of just over two months in the fall.

    Now, I'm not sure if any major act has ever released more mediocre material in a shorter time period. (OK, Prince probably still has Green Day beat -- since 1996's "Emancipation" was a three-disc set.) Yet, it didn't matter one iota in concert.

    In Berkeley, the band played a goodly amount of new songs and was able to make each one matter. If you have listened to "Uno!," "Dos!" and "Tre!," you know that's really saying something.

    How'd Green Day do it? The band treated every song like it was the one that mattered most in the set list. Armstrong and company, of course, were wrong in that regard — the ones that mattered most, like on tours' past, were the offerings from 1994's "Dookie" and 2004's "American Idiot."

    Green Day certainly didn't disappoint once it got around to playing the longtime fan favorites. The group, which also includes the mighty rhythm section of bassist Mike Dirnt and drummer Tre Cool, delivered thrilling versions of the "Dookie" cuts "Welcome to Paradise," "Longview," "She" and "Basket Case." In the encore, Green Day burned through a great rendition of the title track to "American Idiot," as well as that album's ever-impressive suite "Jesus of Suburbia."

    Toward the end of the show, Armstrong, exhausted from delivering such a herculean performance, simply laid down on the stage floor and soaked up the moment.

    "Oh, my God, it's so nice to be home," he said.

    And it's so nice to have you back, Billie Joe.

    Full article at San Jose Mercury News: HERE

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Brian's picture
on April 17, 2013

Billie Joe Armstrong acted like a man with a new lease on life.

The Green Day leader was joyful, energetic and full of passion during his East Bay punk-pop band's sold-out concert at the Greek Theatre. He was happy to be home and performing for the first time in years in Berkeley. Heck, he was just happy period.

"We're all alive," he exclaimed to the 8,500 fans in attendance. "We're all still (expletive) alive!"

What we were witnessing in that moment was a man who had learned, perhaps the hard way, the importance of taking time to smell the roses.

"With so much scary (expletive) going on right now, you've got to live every moment -- every (expletive) moment."

It's safe to assume that he was referencing Monday's tragedy in Boston, but the vocalist-guitarist could've also been alluding to his own his recent experiences. His battle with substance abuse problems led him to rehab and threatened to crush Green Day's career.

It's now an older, wiser Billie Joe Armstrong who fans are seeing take the stage. Yet, one that is no less fun than the previous model.

Kicking off the show with this tour's namesake song, "99 Revolutions," Armstrong acted like a highly caffeinated kid in a candy shop for 2 ½ hours. He buzzed about the stage like a mad man, rarely staying still for more than a few seconds, while captivating the crowd with a ridiculous assortment of juvenile ways. He soaked fans with a water hose, shot both toilet paper and T-shirts into the crowd, and even cuddled onstage with a giant pink bunny.

Ah, yes, the giant pink bunny. It was that costumed character that actually opened the band's set, and provided the one really questionable moment of the night. The bunny staggered about the stage with a drink in each hand, chugging them to the sounds of the Ramones and other lively acts.

Of course, Green Day has never been shy about poking fun at itself. Yet, that the guzzling bunny bit felt inappropriate for a band with a lead singer who recently got out of rehab.

The toilet paper shtick, however, was great.

The quartet -- yes, Green Day is now a quartet, having recently added longtime sideman-guitarist Jason White as an official member -- is touring in support of three new albums. The group released "Uno!," "Dos!" and "Tre!" during a span of just over two months in the fall.

Now, I'm not sure if any major act has ever released more mediocre material in a shorter time period. (OK, Prince probably still has Green Day beat -- since 1996's "Emancipation" was a three-disc set.) Yet, it didn't matter one iota in concert.

In Berkeley, the band played a goodly amount of new songs and was able to make each one matter. If you have listened to "Uno!," "Dos!" and "Tre!," you know that's really saying something.

How'd Green Day do it? The band treated every song like it was the one that mattered most in the set list. Armstrong and company, of course, were wrong in that regard — the ones that mattered most, like on tours' past, were the offerings from 1994's "Dookie" and 2004's "American Idiot."

Green Day certainly didn't disappoint once it got around to playing the longtime fan favorites. The group, which also includes the mighty rhythm section of bassist Mike Dirnt and drummer Tre Cool, delivered thrilling versions of the "Dookie" cuts "Welcome to Paradise," "Longview," "She" and "Basket Case." In the encore, Green Day burned through a great rendition of the title track to "American Idiot," as well as that album's ever-impressive suite "Jesus of Suburbia."

Toward the end of the show, Armstrong, exhausted from delivering such a herculean performance, simply laid down on the stage floor and soaked up the moment.

"Oh, my God, it's so nice to be home," he said.

And it's so nice to have you back, Billie Joe.

Full article at San Jose Mercury News: HERE

Comments

GabrielHenriqueDoVale's picture

fico muito feliz em saber q o Bilie esta melhor, ele realmente é foda...as ultimas musicas representam bem a fase que ele esta passando agora

suburbia's picture

Getting a new tattoo tomorrow -- honoring The Pink Bunny!   :-)

suburbia's picture

I think Billie Joe and company are soaring higher now.  So glad Billie Joe is feeling better and happier.  He's kicking ass on a whole new level now.  I also think Mike is more fired up and jumping higher, and Tre is having more fun too.  Very cool!  Best band in the whole fucking world, dammit! :-)

suburbia's picture

OH You guys are so right about this!  I totally disagree with calling any of the songs on the Trilogy mediocre.  NO fucking way are they mediocre!  If you know Green Day's stuff well enough, you can hear all the special and new sounds and nuances in the new songs!  And, for me, it's hard to pick a favorite album out of the three.  Every time I think I know which one I like best, I listen to the other two and I'm back to being undecided!  I have a string of favorite songs to be sure:  Pretty much every song on Uno is a slam dunk for me.  On Dos! Lazy Bones and Wow That Dirty Dress Is So Loud are my favorites, and probably contrary to a lot of people, I really really like Nightlife -- I love Mike's bass on that song!  On Tre, I absolutely love Ex-kid, especially when watching Cuatro! - very special song!  The other song that kicks ass for me is Dirty Rotten Scoundrels - it echoes the multi-layered East Jesus Nowhere.  Awesome!  The Trilogy is incredible!  Thank you Green Day!   :-)

fedepoli's picture

I love Nightlife too! ! !  That song is amazing! 

karenrashkash Extreme Green Day Fan's picture

The guy who wrote this continues to treat  DOOKIE  &  AMERICAN IDIOT as  "SACRED COWS".   They are indeed materpieces,  but all of Green Day albums have great and amzaing songs on them.

karenrashkash Extreme Green Day Fan's picture

I have to take exception to the comment about  MEDIOCRE material.  The author of this article is so off base with that remark.  There are some AMAZING songs on the TRILOGY.  There are some medioce, but some truly awesome songs.   Beginning with the tour's namesake,  99 REVOLUTIONS.    Past hits from Dookie & American Idiot are classics, they stand the test of time. Always like to hear them.  But wished they would have played more from the Trilogy.  BRUTAL LOVE was amazing and embraced at both shows I attended.  STOP WHEN THE RED LIGHTS FLASH,  one of my favorites.  Thank God they played that.  Kill the DJ ???  Come on.  That is so different, so good.  No where near mediocrity.

Alokita's picture

drunk bunny.. Cute.. XP

fedepoli's picture

"To reminisce is to die" - BJ

Come on! Just play more than a half of the trilogy and one or two encores with classics/hits...

XimeGD's picture

I just LOVED the trilogy... I think they should play more songs of it. There are a LOT of amazing songs on those albums, especially on Tré. We have to stop thinking that only the old stuff is good. They still together to make NEW music... and we deserve to listen those songs LIVE

fedepoli's picture

Green Day should play more songs from ¡Uno!, ¡Dos! & ¡Tré! like Nuclear Family, Let Yourself Go, Kill the DJ, Rusty James, Fuck Time, Lazy Bones, Lady Cobra, 8th Ave. Serenade, Walk Away & Dirty Rotten Bastards!

fedepoli's picture

Dookie and American Idiot aren't the only ones that matter... We want more Trilogy's songs and from Warning & Nimrod, Green Day isn't just Dookie or American Idiot

fedepoli's picture

The guy who wrote this is an asshole, the trilogy isn't mediocre...

¡Uno! & ¡Tré! are two of my favorites albums with Insomniac and Kerplunk ♥

karenrashkash Extreme Green Day Fan's picture

Yep,  way too many narrow minded Green Day fans.  So sick of the  "old Green Day".  WTF???   

CrowdAlbum's picture

Checkout over 450+ photos from the crowd at alpha.crowdalbum.com/gallery/516cf70dd462490200000009/Green-Day_20130416