Label: Reprise Records
Release Date: 2011-03-30
Green Day’s newest live venture reeks of heard-it-before songs intended to tide fans over until the trio that rose from gutter trash obscurity to arena rock stardom can actually produce something new. While their last live album, Bullet in a Bible, was an ideal starting point for newbie fans, Awesome as Fuck lacks the same infectiousness. The offering concentrates on recent tracks from 21st Century Breakdown and American Idiot followed by earlier power ballads like “When I Come Around” and “Geek Stink Breath.” Somewhere in the middle they manage a tender piano-infused anarchist anthem on “Viva La Gloria” and an acoustic-fied “21 Guns,” and there are subtle moments with “J.A.R. (Jason Andrew Relva)” and “Who Wrote Holden Caulfield?” Unfortunately it doesn’t end furiously fast — like all good punk albums should. Instead, we get “Christie Road” and “Paper Lanterns,” nothing to send fans off into a final frenzy. We’ve heard these songs a million times before. While adding Awesome as Fuck to a personal collection for die-hards is a must, a little new material and a final f-you wouldn’t have hurt, but we’ll give them some credit for the title they chose.