GREEN DAY'S 21ST CENTURY BREAKDOWN IN THEIR OWN WORDS. NO STRAITJACKET REQUIRED.
Intro/21st Century Breakdown
Billie Joe Armstrong: "That goes from a song about where I come from to what it's like to be in this era, financially. It's represents an underdog spirit."
Know Your Enemy
BJA: "It's a rallying song. It's about liberating yourself from a lot of bullshit that you see on TV."
¡Viva La Gloria!
BJA: "It's like, the older you get the more you become detached from the naivety you had when you were growing up. How do you keep that spark?"
Before the Lobotomy
BJA: "It's about how self-destructive behaviour can overshadow parts of your ambition: there's this shiny red button you just want to push."
BJA: "I don't know if I was just having a bad morning but it's that angry feeling of despair that I guess a lot of people can relase to."
Last Night On Earth
BJA: "Christian's Infierno is like a subway ride to hell and you kind of end up in outer space with this."
Mike Dirnt: "It's the most unapologetic love song."
March Of The Dogs
BJA: "It's inspired by Bill Maher's Religulous. It's about the hypocricy of the religion. I think that any good Christian would have some doubts about religion."
BJA: "It's a song about how someone can be so vengeful that it's almost sexually driven."
MD: "It's algo got a kinda cool Gypsy carnival feel."
Last Of The American Girls
BJA: "I started writing it for my wife, but there's elements of the Hurricane Katrina and Critical Mass. It adds those elements to a character who has this left-wing strength."
¿Viva La Gloria?
BJA: "It's about a woman with a very heavy drug problem. ¡Viva la Gloria! is about a person who has a vision, but this is a person who's distorting that vision with drugs and self-destruction.
Restless Heart Syndrome
BJA: "It's about pharmaceuticals. A lot of people become junkies if they get the right prescription."
Horseshoes And Handgrenades
BJA: "Oh God. You read the lyrics to that one? I'm not sure about that song yet.
BJA: "It's about obsession with celebrity and watching people self-destruct. A lot of Americans have a tabloid addiction. Am I guilty of that? Yeah."
BJA: "I love old punk flyers. You'd see things like a crucifixion of Mickey Mouse: two things that aren't supposed to go together. That's the kind of what the song is about. The music is almost Springteenish."
BJA: "It brings up 21st Century Breakdown in a lot of ways, and the 21-gun-salute for someone that's fallen, but done in an arena rock 'n' roll sort of way."
BJA: "That's two songs in one: one call either Mass Hysteria or This Riot Sucks and the other Modern World. It swirls all the information that's going on in the record around in an emotional blender. At the end it's going to sound like a wall of TV screens. It's sensory overload."
See The Light
BJA: "This record is like the way American culture is right now, where a different week is a different crisis depending on where you're getting your news from, but there's also a feeling of hope that goes throughout the record. Life, I guess. And it ends up with See The Light."
May 15th, 2009