After releasing three albums in quick succession this past year and fresh off a world-wide tour in (somewhat) support of those albums, naturally, us fans are already asking ourselves, “What is on the horizon for Green Day?” Specifically, “Where does the band go next in terms of their music and when do we get to hear it?” Quite frankly, we won’t know. But the fact they have released 11 studio albums and have been around since “19-fuckin’-88,” they can certainly do whatever the hell they want and we know that it’ll be good.
Green Day has been all over the map when it comes to their sound and musical style. Compare Insomniac to Warning for example. Hell, even compare the latest albums ¡Uno!, ¡Dos!, and ¡Tré! to themselves. Everything the band has released over the past quarter century is nothing alike. And you know what? That is damn exciting for us fans and it certainly is for the band. They don’t have to make an album like Dookie or American Idiot again to be successful, and they aren’t putting any pressure on themselves to do so. As they’ve proven 11 times, whatever they put out is a hit and people cannot get enough of it. Sorry, those who are stuck in the mid-1990s, the next album won’t be like Dookie.
In an interview with Rolling Stone from several months ago, Billie talks about what he’d like Green Day to do in the future in regards to their sound. “It would be great to do another rock opera, but using more low-fi technology. I love shitty-sounding records. I’d love to do more stuff that is 100 percent live. Sometimes I wish we would have recorded our last records that way.” In terms of overall sound and not instrumentation, I interpret this to be something to the like of the Foxboro Hot Tubs’ Stop, Drop & Roll!!!.
I think we all can assume that the next album will contain lyrics that are deep and personal, due to Billie Joe’s rehab stint late last year and into earlier this year. As we know, he’s always writing, but he probably hasn’t written anything quite like what he has recently. These lyrics will probably be about struggling with personal demons, a subject Billie Joe is a master at writing about. In Billie Joe’s interview with Rolling Stone, it is mentioned that he has started writing new music. “I write guitar riffs. I’ll come up with melodies in my head and write ‘em down and keep a little log going. I always write lyrics.” In the interview, Billie Joe is asked if a “rehab album” is in the works. He responds with, “It’s too early. I feel I have to wait this one out. I don’t want to jump in and get myself overwhelmed.” He goes on with, “I can only take it one song at a time. I just want to write good songs that people love.”
Billie also mentions the realization that he has always written about his addiction to alcohol and, more recently, pills. He mentions in Rolling Stone he would say to himself, “I told you this shit was going down. You wouldn’t fucking take it seriously.”
The band just recently announced an Australian tour in early 2014 as part of the Soundwave Festival. Also, the band is scheduled to perform at the Dreamforce Conference in November. Outside of those dates, I doubt we will see much of them. Maybe a couple last-minute shows here and there if we’re lucky. I wouldn’t even be surprised if the band went into the studio and recorded a new EP and released a single from it before going to Australia, just to have something new to ride on and give to fans.
A couple years from now in 2015 or 2016 seems like a reasonable time period for when we will get the next full-length album from Green Day. Currently, Billie Joe is writing songs for the Broadway show “These Paper Bullets, “ which is to debut March of 2014. Also next year are the 10th and 20th anniversaries for American Idiot and Dookie, respectively. The band will likely do something for those, probably similar to their recent Dookie performances in the UK and Europe. Personally, I’m hoping for a remastered version of Dookie and for “Heart Like a Hand Grenade,” the documentary of the recording of American Idiot, to (finally) be released.
After all the action from those events die down, we can assume the band will return to the studio to record their next album. Whichever musical and lyrical direction they take with said album, there is something we can be damn sure of: the band will pour their hearts into it. They refuse to do anything half-assed and they will make sure everything is right and every song is realized to its full potential, as they've done for their whole career.