Billie Joe Armstrong Talks Green Day’s New ‘Revolution Radio’ LP
Armstrong sat down with Rolling Stone to delve into the album's long gestation, explaining that after the band wrapped its tour in support of 2012's triple-album set ¡Uno!, ¡Dos!, and ¡Tre!, they knew they needed a break — and they were determined not to force whatever came next.
The catalyst for Revolution Radio came when Armstrong built a new studio, where he set up shop in 2014 and started demoing new songs. "I just started messing around with different riffs. The first song where I was like, 'OK, I'm onto something' was 'Bang Bang,'" he recalled. "And then the first track of the record, 'Somewhere Now.' I started doing demos and I showed them to [bassist Mike Dirnt] and [drummer Tré Cool]. That's the test. And they absolutely loved it."
Explaining that "the approach for this record was not to approach," Armstrong ended up penning a batch of material that, like their American Idiot LP, is fairly topical. Fittingly given the personal statements in the new songs, Green Day set up shop in the studio without a producer; as Armstrong put it, "This time I just wanted to feel the freedom of just depending on ourselves and getting in a room. There's no in-between person and we're forced to sort of be in there with each other. So it was really interesting to kind of see how everybody interfaced with each other."
Now that the record is wrapped and on its way to stores, it's time for the band to get down to the business of heading back out on tour — and Armstrong insists he's more than ready.
"I'm just so grateful to have this band that's been around for over 25 years. I've been in a relationship for 22 years. My friends are doing great, and they're good people and I love hanging out with them. They always say that they love hanging out with me," he laughed. "Everything is cool. It's a great time to be able to go on tour, for a record to feel like this."
Every Green Day Album Ranked In Order of Awesomeness