Album Review: Green Day – ¡Dos! (2012 LP)

Part ¡Dos! in Green Day’s trilogy of rock albums could easily be seen as nothing more than a sequel to the drunken debut by their short-lived side-project, The Foxboro Hot Tubs. This, however, would be the wrong way to look at it. While the album is most certainly soaked with the hedonism of Stop, Drop, and Roll!!!, the energy and focus is most certainly Green Day’s. Even if it does sometimes feel like the soundtrack to a party at a dive bar…

While the simple strumming of “See You Tonight” may lead you to believe that ¡Dos! will have a more melancholy sound, you need only wait until the end of it’s one minute for that to fall through. This comes in the form of the raucous second track, “F*** Time”. As it originated as a Foxboro Hot Tubs’ song, it makes sense that it should be heard so early on. It’s brazen lyrics and garage guitar act as the perfect introduction to the recklessness that colours the whole album — regardless of whether Billie Joe Armstrong is crooning to a sweetheart on “Wild One”, or snarling about an ex-girlfriend on “Ashley”. Who said his wife was the only girl he could sing about?

It’s in moments like that this you see how much the band likes to prove their critics wrong — such as those that said the band wouldn’t be singing songs about laziness and masturbation at 40. (See: “Lazy Bones” and “Makeout Party”.) Then there’s the times where they just want to throw us a curveball. Like, say, featuring rapper Lady Cobra of Mystic Knights of the Cobra on the track “Nightlife” (which follows a song named after her). Yes, a Green Day song with a rap. Yes, it can be dodgy at times. But is it funny that they did it, just so they can say they did? Hell yeah!

And really, ¡Dos! is all about that wild, stupid, messy fun right up until the final number — the song “Amy”, written about and dedicated to the late Amy Winehouse. This simple ballad is in stark contrast to the tracks before, and listening to it gives more than the slight impression that Armstrong saw something of himself in Amy.

All in all, Green Day’s latest offering is a vast improvement on the strained and somewhat fragmented sound of ¡Uno!. While it might not be as defining as some of their other releases, it’s still a cohesive collection of garage-rock that you can put on, turn up, and enjoy.

Review Score: 7.2 out of 10

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