By Rob van Alstyne
By Zach McCormick
By Emily Eveland
By Jack Spencer
By Michael Madden
By Reed Fischer
By Emily Weiss
By Emily Weiss
You could totally slip this bit of seraphim bait into your church's PA system for Sunday service and come away an ecclesiastical tastemaker hero, with the clergy and laypeople none the wiser.
"Working Class Hero"
Somewhere around the time Dubya was elected, Green Day began their sneaky transformation from punk spazzes into folk-hero elder statesmen. So I've had plenty of time to prepare myself for something like "Hero," in which they're wizened-guru narrators instead of 'tude-fueled protagonists, but it still feels jarring in a way, which is good—in that Green Day can still shock, kinda, even rocking a Lennon cover. And no, I don't really hate this in the way I'm probably supposed to or whatever, even if "Until the pain is so big you feel nothing at all" doesn't really rhyme with "A working class hero is something to be."
Pat mixes marijuana and gasoline metaphors here the way dope dealers (I imagine, anyway) cut baking soda with Bolivian marching powder; actual stoned people trying to make sense of whatever he's spitting here will have their craniums doubly scrambled, poached, and fried.
"Liquid In, Liquid Out"
Somehow, I've never gotten around to hearing the Thermals until now. They're sort of Warning!-era Green Day mid-tempo punk-pop on Now We Can See generally and "Liquid" in particular. I dunno if this whole "rocking a wink from the afterlife" thing is their shtick, but in a way they're carrying the graveyard-bound baton the Unicorns dropped when they broke up.
So much ambiguity, here. What, exactly, is a weed demon? A hallucination that appears when you've smoked laced shit? Snoop Dogg's character in Half Baked? Your unreliable dealer? The brooding, ponderous persona Wavves himself assumes after two dozen hookah hits? Have a safe, happy 4/20, kids!