It’s been four long years since Green Day completed their most recent trio of albums: ¡Uno!, ¡Dos!, and ¡Tré! They haven’t been easy years, either. But the band is back, and they’ve got a brand new album in store.
The punk rockers dropped their new single, “Bang Bang,” on Thursday (August 11). With it came the announcement that they’d soon be releasing their first new album since 2012, Revolution Radio, due out October 7.
In a new interview with Rolling Stone, frontman Billie Joe Armstrong explained how marching in a Black Lives Matter protest inspired him to write the record’s title track. “I was just watching this controlled chaos, and it was going and happening all over the country. I was feeling that people don’t want to feel obsolete in the things that we care about,” he said.
“Bang Bang” also has a political bent: It’s about the recent string of mass shootings that have gripped America. “There's this sort of rage happening, but it's also now being filmed and we all have ourselves under surveillance,” Armstrong explained. “To me, that is so twisted. To get into the brain of someone like that was freaky. It freaked me out.”
The song samples news reports on mass shootings, and its lyrics seem to be written from the perspective of one of the many shooters that have made the news. “I want to be like the soldiers on the screen,” Armstrong sings. “It’s my private holy war.”
It’s a chilling new offering from the band that gave us American Idiot — and it’s proof that Green Day’s political commentary can take on more than the Bush administration.