Not Quite The Time of His Life: A Look at Billie Joe's Vegas Breakdown

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Rarely does an album cover so accurately reflect real life.
For most bands, the week of their album release is full of excitement. It's the moment when people are most interested in what they're doing. They get to do the press rounds, fans get to hear the new songs, and the label waits to see if their investment paid off.

Today Uno, the first of Green Day's new trilogy of records, hits stores but this week will not be the victory lap the band hoped for. Instead of being all over the national press the band instead had to put out a press release explaining that their lead singer was headed to rehab.

How could it go so wrong for one of the biggest bands in the world?

Well, it starts by agreeing to play a gig at a big corporate music festival. It gets worse when you find yourself short on time. Freaking out and breaking your instrument only exacerbates the situation.

It really doesn't help that the show is bring broadcast on the Internet.

But if you're looking for some play by play commentary we've got you covered: watch the video below and check out the following in-depth breakdown:

0:01: We join the band in the middle of "Basket Case," which is sounding pretty good.

0:05-0:16: You might think the crowd is really in to the show but that's just careful editing. Sure, the people front and center are having a good time, but there's a greater story unfolding when you really look. A lot of people in the background are clearly uninterested in what's going on, along with one girl who seems to think the show is a bit too loud.

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0:20: Billie Joe isn't the only one bored with the performance. In fairness to him, he's probably played the song 2,000 or so times so I can understand wanting to play something new. It's still a bad call for two reasons:

a.) "Basket Case" is an awesome song with a rad ending, so he's killing it before the best part.
b.) The new Green Day songs are all pretty boring. "Let Yourself Go," for example, sounds like a bad blink-182 leftover.

0:28: It is at this point the phrase "One minute left" is uttered for the first time. This brings up a question: Did he stop the song out of boredom or did he look at the time warning and lose his shit? It could go either way. After all, he had to know that he couldn't fit a new song into a minute, either.

It's worth noting that at this moment the rest of the band is just hanging out, not looking too upset about the time issue.

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3 comments
Gaspar_Ramsey
Gaspar_Ramsey

Absolutely spot on. Rock and Roll was founded on rage, and it's good to see a little of it creeping back in after nearly four decades of synthetic crap and talentless posieurs. Joanie Jett had it, Debby Harry, but you want the real thing, go back to the 'Sixties. Gracie Slick could pour vitriol, and Janis--well, she was Janis, and rang up every emotion in a single note. Rage, rage against the corporate machine that steals your soul and leaves your mind benumbed, rage against the people who steal your heritage and claim it as their own, rage against the takers, the deniers, the fat-cat sons of bitches. Now that's rock'n'roll.

Horshack
Horshack

That enormous tool.  The first time I went to Terrastock, Ghost, an incredibly psych-rock band from Japan, were left only with 15 minutes before the end of the show.  They played their 15 minutes, and did not complain, even though they'd flown all the way from Japan to play this festival.  That's professionalism.  This is just a tantrum

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