Green Day – Father Of All Motherfuckers
Released: 7th February, 2020
Billie-Joe Armstrong // Lead Vocals/Lead Guitar
Mike Dirnt // Bass/Backing Vocals
Tre Cool // Drums/Percussion/Backing Vocals
If you were an emo kid in the 2000’s, like I definitely was, Billie-Joe Armstrong, Tre Cool and Mike Dirnt were the names that you associated with being one of the coolest bands on the planet. Every kid knew the words to American Idiot and you wanted to be the one that got to do the talking vocals in ‘Holiday’. Now though, it’s 2020 and Green Day isn’t really a name that comes to mind when you get asked to name your favourite punk rock band. After the disappointment that was 2016’s Revolution Radio, I had high hopes for Father Of All Motherfuckers but after the release of the first three singles, I was less than impressed.
The first single, and the title track of the album ‘Father Of All…’ has none of the glory of Green Day past, but what it does have is a signature catchy guitar riff, which for me, is honestly the best part of the track. If you took away Billie-Joe’s overproduced and over synthesized vocals, the song would be a good track musically. Track and single two ‘Fire, Ready, Aim’ is a MUCH better track and has much more of an old school Green Day vibe. The lyrics are still a little poppy, but they’re very catchy and will be one that I’m sure audiences are going to be happy to sing along to. I know I can’t listen to it without yelling ‘Ready Aim Fire! Fire Ready Aim!’, regardless of where I am. Aside from being super catchy lyrically, it also has a really good clapping pattern throughout that’s fun to join in on. Of the three singles from Father Of All Motherfuckers, for me personally ‘Oh Yeah!’ is the worst. Admittedly, it’s the only one of the three songs where Billie-Joe’s vocals don’t sound overproduced. Unfortunately, that’s really its only redeeming factor. ‘Oh Yeah!’ is more of what you’d expect to come out of a manufactured boy band who are trying to sound cool, or trying to stay relevant. The best thing about ‘Oh Yeah!’ is that Green Day pledged the money made from the royalties of the track to the International Justice Mission, and Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network.
‘Meet Me on the Roof’ is track four and it again sounds like something a manufactured boy band, or a bubble gum pop band would come out with, rather than the punk band Green Day used to be. It would feel a lot more appropriate as a track by a 50’s rock band as well, but maybe that’s the vibe the band was going for? Especially with the outro. ‘I Was a Teenage Teenager’ starts out with a cool ass bass riff from Mike Dirnt and is probably my favourite track on the album. I’m a sucker for a sick bassline and ‘I Was a Teenage Teenager’ has that, even if the track itself has a name that is a little ridiculous. It feels like a really simple track musically, but it’s catchy, fun and was the first track to get me tapping my foot along. It also has an outro that is going to sound sick on vinyl. ‘Stab You In The Heart’ is next and it’s another tick in the yes column for me because it’s much less bubblegum pop and more rock. We haven’t quite made it back to punk rock territory with this one but it’s rocky, and it’s fast and Billie-Joe sounds more like his usual, gravelly voiced self.
‘Sugar Youth’ is track seven and I get major ‘American Idiot’ vibes, just minus the punk rock. Tre Cool’s drumming really drives the track and Dirnt and Armstrong round it out nicely with the combination of guitar, bass and the vocals. It’s also my second favourite track on the album and was the first one I actually played twice in a row the first time I listened. ‘Junkies on a High’ is a bit of a weird track, and if I had to describe it I’d say it’d be best placed in a high school drama movie where teenagers get high and have sex for the first time. Second to last is ‘Take the Money and Crawl’ and I really wish it had of been further up the tracklist because it would have gotten me hooked earlier. It’s also not nearly long enough, as 2 minutes isn’t enough time to thoroughly enjoy the song. Lastly comes ‘Graffitia’ and it’s a fun listen, but not really enough to redeem what’s an average record.
If we were still in the 80’s, I think that Green Day would have been able to get away with putting this record out and getting a lot of new fans hooked. Sadly, it’s just not as good as what we know Green Day are more than capable of producing and overall was a bit of a letdown. I tried really hard to enjoy Father Of All Motherfuckers but aside from maybe 2 or 3 of the 10 tracks, it just wasn’t a great record. Billie-Joe, Mike Dirnt and Tre Cool were a big part of my formative teen years and I will always have a soft spot in my heart for them, but unfortunately Father Of All Motherfuckers just didn’t do anything for me.
Green Day – Father Of All Motherfuckers tracklisting:
1. Father Of All…
2. Fire, Ready, Aim
3. Oh Yeah!
4. Meet Me on the Roof
5. I Was A Teenage Teenager
6. Stab You in the Heart
7. Sugar Youth
8. Junkie on a High
9. Take the Money and Crawl