Green Day: Dookie (30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition) (Warner/Reprise) - review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Thursday, February 29th, 2024  

Green Day

Dookie (30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition)

Warner/Reprise

Nov 28, 2023 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


Some albums, for better or worse, take you right back to the day you first heard them. Green Day’s breakthrough, Dookie, is one of those albums. The singles “Welcome to Paradise,” “Longview,” “Basket Case,” “When I Come Around” were ubiquitous at the time and have been so relegated to classic rock staple 30 years later, morphing from silly fast-paced punk anthems to something embedded in the rock and roll firmament. Yet, spinning the album 30 years later makes me feel like I’m still the 15-year-old kid crammed against the wooden fence surrounding the quasi-beach club of Baron’s, sand and all, in the unlikeliest of places in Allentown, PA.

This grand, luxurious anniversary reissue is everything and more. In some ways, the giant box packed with buttons, a sticker, postcard, air freshener, and (oh yes) bags for dog poop, is the antithesis of what Dookie was back in the day, which is to say a sloppy set of slacker punk singalongs blasting through the high school halls with middle finger held high. But those high school misfits are now, like this writer, old and prone to nostalgia. And for these purposes, this Dookie reissue is all one could want, featuring the album proper, two albums of demos and outtakes, the band’s live performance from Woodstock 1994, and a two-LP 1994 concert from Barcelona.

Sure, Dookie was played to death by so many teenagers at the time, and there’s no way to avoid the singles sounding stale after being ever-present for so many years. But one may tend to forget is how solid the rest of the album is. Its predecessors, 39/Smooth and Kerplunk were hit and miss, some great tracks with some very skippable ones. Dookie was the first Green Day album with nothing that was less than perfectly polished pop-punk front to back. The non-hits still sound fresh 30 years on.

The LP of demos (side one, 4-track demos; side two, cassette demos) are more revelatory than one might expect, especially the 4-track cuts, which feature joyous harmonies over spare instrumentation in “Pulling Teeth,” a “Basket Case” with completely different lyrics, an acoustic “When I Come Around,” and a completely out of character piano ballad called “When It’s Time” that could have been “Good Riddance” three years prior.

The outtakes LP (one side with an etched b-side) features a couple old tracks, “Christie Rd.” and “409 In Your Coffee Maker” as well as a couple other non-album cuts and covers of The Kinks’ “Tired of Waiting for You” and a stoned demo version of Rufus Thomas’ “Walking the Dog.”

The live material here greatly complements the studio and demo material, filling out a completist’s dream, especially in the case of the Woodstock performance, which made so many headlines at the time, a perfect marker from the era.

Some may be inclined to leave their youth where it was, pull out the original CD and chuckle at the Sesame Street Ernie puppet in the crowd on the back cover (before it was censored off), and put it back on the shelf, a memory from a time when we were younger and dumber. But for those who are inclined to dive headfirst into the past, the wealth of material in this reissue, written, audio, and otherwise, will be manna. (www.greenday.com)

Author rating: 7.5/10

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Average reader rating: 10/10



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