Punk pioneers' power-pop

Barry C Chung
Barry C Chung |

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You can't help but marvel at the longevity of Green Day. They stumbled onto the music scene in the late 1980s and found success soon after in the vanguard of the California punk scene.

More than two decades later they've released Uno! ("one" in Spanish), the aptly-titled first of an album trilogy. It will be followed, unsurprisingly, by Dos! ("two") in November and Tre! ("three") in January.

Uno! is a change from recent albums, but not a full-on revival of the punk brand that helped establish them. Nope, this is supposed to be, as frontman Billie Joe Armstrong told Rolling Stone, "punchier, more power-pop", with a sound "somewhere between AC/DC and the early Beatles."

But in fact it's not so dissimilar in style to their early 1990s albums Kerplunk and Dookie - which isn't a complaint. It's especially true on the opening track Nuclear Family, as well as Stay the Night and Let Yourself Go, where Armstrong's inimitable vocals come to the fore.

The early Beatles are indeed echoed, most notably in Rusty James and Sweet 16.

This being Green Day, there are some vulgar lyrics but, fret not:, there's a clean version as well.

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