Greenday breaks down.

I know 21st Century was released a while ago, but as it was first printed in AUT University’s student newspaper Te Waha Nui, I finally have permission to add it to my blog.

Greenday’s 21st Century Breakdown was touted as the most anticipated album of 2009 by the Associated Press but falls short of expectations.

The eighth album from the US pop-punk rockers comes five long years after the release of their reinvention album American Idiot.

The band had been working on new material since early 2006 but never let on when recording would begin, until it was also revealed that Butch Vig would be producing the album.

Vig is the former drummer for alternative rock band Garbage and has produced multi-platinum albums for Nirvana and the Smashing Pumpkins, creating high expectations for the album.

Recording for Breakdown began in January 2008 and was finished in April 2009.

It is another rock opera in the same fashion as American Idiot. It contains three acts, Heroes and Cons, Charlatans and Saints and Horseshoes and Handgrenades and generally gives the fingers to authority.

American Idiot followed many political themes picking on the administration at the time. Breakdown follows the same pattern of using political themes but they seem unnecessary now.


With American Idiot being such a huge success back in 2004 and creating an entirely new fan base in a younger generation, the album doesn’t have the same expectations.

It builds on American Idiot to the point it becomes American Idiot 2.0 but fails to have the same effect that AI did in providing a minor revolution in the music industry.

People are over the angst that Bush created. Bush is gone and so should be the political musical response by Greenday.

Singles off the album are Know Your Enemy and 21 Guns, which also appears on the Transformers II Soundtrack.

The entire album is typically Greenday with songs having the same anthem-esqe qualities.

However, it may be time for Greenday to seriously consider whether they need to hang up their guitar straps and just live off their royalties.