I can’t believe the backlash against Green Day’s 21 Guns. The second single from the band’s 21st Century Breakdown album is getting roundly slapped down by fans and critics. And while you could accuse them of anthem-by-numbers songwriting, it doesn’t matter. This is a bloody good, anthemic rock record.
What I like about it is that the band seem to be holding back slightly. They could be firing on all cylinders, blasting out fist-pumping choruses. But there’s a tension in their delivery – especially Billie Joe’s restrained falsetto – that gives the song a bittersweet vibe that really only climaxes as the chorus breaks into the guitar solo.
An interesting take is Music Vixen’s suggestion that 21 Guns owes a lot to the old Mott The Hoople song All The Young Dudes.
Met with widespread acclaim, and localized disgust, Green Day’s new album 21st Century Breakdown, featuring the single “21 Guns,” is a carefully crafted, and sure to be successful, ploy to create perfect pop while paying lip service to teenage revolution.
At this point, it’s certainly no surprise , and not necessarily a detriment, that Green Day’s music has become more polished and mature than it was on earlier efforts-even Dookie, with its attempts at layered vocal harmonies, made it clear that Green Day favored the pop end of pop-punk.
Now you come to mention it, there’s a striking similarity. But not enough to get the music world up in arms. Certainly, 21st Century Breakdown has the band’s fanbase divided, but for such an ambitious concept, there was always going to be some fall-out.
I love the song. But what do you think?