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After releasing two albums of raw and ready rock since September, the party’s over, or at least on its last legs, on “Tre!,” the third in Green Day’s trilogy, out today.
The exhilaration on “Uno!,” released in September, and “Dos!,” out last month, has been replaced with a certain weariness, but the dozen tunes here still have plenty of bite. Performed at a much slower, less hyper speed than the songs on the first two sets, “Tre!” provides some food for thought for those who have stayed too long too often, while also serving an an excellent showcase for Billie Joe Armstrong’s often plaintive vocals.
Opening with country-tinged waltz “Brutal Love,” most of the songs on “Tre!” come with a tinge of regret whether it’s over a lost love on the horn-laced “Missing You” or a lost childhood (at any age) on the pulsing “X-Kid.”
The band’s familiar quick-tempo-ed bounce returns on the power poppy “Sex, Drugs and Violence,” which is doubly likable for the line: “Well, I don’t want to be an imbecile, but Jesus made me that way.”
The most interesting cut is the six-minute “Dirty Rotten Bastards,” which is about four songs in one. The tune, which would have sounded right at home on “21st Century Breakdown,” opens with a sing-songy militant bounce before progressing to some serious guitar shredding bolstered by Tre Cool’s relentless drumming, then shifting into a melodic mid-tempo lament to “all God’s losers,” before majestically bending into a slower section.
The album closes with a piano ballad, “The Forgotten,” which sounds like Green Day crossed with Oasis, and will be familiar with "Twight" fans for its inclusion on the soundtrack for "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2." Green Day doesn't do happy particularly well, but they've got pissed off, bittersweet, and disenchanted down.
The three albums work as a piece, but also stand confidently on their own individually. Of the three, “Tre” will appeal to Green Day fans who like their music a little more contemplative than mindless.