To say that Green Day have divided their fans in the last decade is a gigantic understatement. They were pioneers of the genre with ‘Dookie’ in 1994 and it resulted in them exploding onto the scene, and thus, developing a devoted and huge fanbase. However, ‘American Idiot’ is an album that you either love or hate (depending on when you got into the band), and even though I personally think it’s a piece of shit, it propelled the band to a level of stardom that not many bands reach.
The world tour of ‘American Idiot’ saw the release of the ‘Bullet In A Bible’ live CD/DVD. It served partially as a documentary, featuring interviews with each band member as they detailed one of the biggest shows of their career at Milton Keynes. Now, Green Day present us with their second live release, the ‘Awesome As F**k’ CD/DVD filmed on a world tour supporting 2009’s ’21st Century Breakdown’.
The most important aspect of a live release is the tracklisting. The CD features songs taken from different shows across the world tour, and the middle of the album features golden material from Green Day‘s early years. We even get a sample of pre-‘Dookie’ material, something that isn’t just a cool sentimental throwback, but is priceless to hear in a live setting. Throwing in the often underrated ‘When I Come Around’ and fan favorites ‘J.A.R.’ and ‘She’ gives you a sequence from tracks 7 to 13 that makes this release worth the purchase by themselves. Of course, there’s plenty of newer material, highlighted by performances of ‘Viva La Gloria’ and ’21 Guns’.
The main problem with the CD is its awfully erratic sound quality. While none of the quality is unbearable, it varies between clearly professional recording to seemingly amateur production.
So, even though ‘Awesome As F**k’ has both its pros and cons and isn’t as good as Green Day‘s last live release, it’s still worth the purchase. To put it simply, this is mainly because the new live sound of the old tracks gives you something concrete to put in your music library. These songs aren’t new by any means, but you’re still getting something that you don’t really own right now. ‘Awesome As F**k’ captures the intensity of a live Green Day show while giving you a nostalgic regression into what made you fall in love with this band in the first place.
Written by Rhys Milsom