It seems that God and Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong are smiling on the Go-Go's and their punk rock past.
Armstrong and the Go-Go's have co-written a new track, titled "Unforgiven," which will be released March 20 as the first single off God Bless the Go-Go's, the girl group's first new studio album in 17 years.
The track should provide the Go-Go's singer Belinda Carlisle, guitarists Jane Wiedlin and Charlotte Caffey, bassist Kathy Valentine and drummer Gina Schock with an opportunity to touch base again with their punk roots. The Go-Go's initially formed in Hollywood, California, in the late '70s as a novelty punk outfit, and they were considered peers of such seminal acts as X, Black Flag, and the Germs.
"[Green Day were] influenced by us, and we ended up getting re-influenced by them," Wiedlin said of the collaboration with Armstrong on "Unforgiven," for which the Green Day frontman also performs backing vocals and guitar.
Other new tracks slated for God Bless the Go-Go's, which was co-produced by Paul Kolderie and Sean Slade, include "Daisy Chain," "Stuck in My Car," "Vision of Nowness" and "Apology."
God Bless the Go-Go's is the group's long awaited follow-up to its 1984 swan song, Talk Show. Wiedlin left the group a few months after the album's release, prompting the band to call it a day in 1985.
Carlisle and Wiedlin both ventured out into solo careers with varying degrees of success Carlisle had a #1 single in 1987 with "Heaven Is a Place on Earth", while Wiedlin had a #9 hit, "Rush Hour", a year later.
Despite an acrimonious breakup, the Go-Go's have staged several reunions over the years, including one in 1990 to support a best-of album, Greatest, and another four years later, to record several new cuts for Return to the Valley of the Go-Go's, a double-disc compilation.
Most recently, the Go-Go's re-formed for a tour last summer (see "Go-Go's Go on Tour With B-52's, Psychedelic Furs"), and in spring last year they released another anthology, The Go-Go's Collection.
God Bless the Go-Go's is due May 15 on Beyond Records.