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on 13 December 2014
Ever since American Idiot, Green Day have often tried to replicate the success of their hugely popular rock opera. Their latest release was in the form of the back-to-back album trilogy, Uno, Dos and Tre which boasted some great songs on each album but was let down by some toned down middle of the road songs that lacked the punky edge the band had on many of their early albums. 21st Century Breakdown was released five years after American Idiot and the band were still riding on the success of that album and wanted to capitalised on its success. This album is pretty much 'American Idiot II' in its pompous delivery and bloated length (18 tracks in total). It's by no means a bad album and I still go back to it many times as it has some fantastic songs ('East Jesus Nowhere' and '21 Guns' are some of the best the band have put out lately). Billie Joe Armstrong's vocals and guitar melodies still remain impressive and Mike Dirnt and Tre Cool offer great support as well. However, many tracks just come off as forgettable and you overlook them after listening to them. It's an ambitious album that should be given a listen if you're a Green Day fan (especially if you love American Idiot) but don't go in expecting this to be on par with it or any of their early albums like Dookie or Warning. Still better than Uno, Dos and Tre though.
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on 15 May 2009
As a big Green day for many a year, I have watched the band grow and indeed develop both their music and maturity within their music. From the early punk days where music was heavy, thrashing and down right great, the music slowly changed, with many saying Warning being the turning point. Since then we have seen the album American Idiot and today 21st Century Breakdown.

Firstly, is this like American Idiot...answer yes, but there are changes. The emphasis from the early days has shifted from the music to the lyrics itself. From listening to this album you can tell BJ Armstrong has spent many hours at these lyrics and it does show. Deep meaningful lyrics are played in more meaningful music, with bursts of the old Green Day still there.

So what is the album itself like? The overall impression I had before this album, is how does it take 5 years to write an album, but from listening to this it is very clear. The lyrics are carefully chosen and the music has been layered perfectly on top, with some good old Green Day passion and bursts from the past. Other people have mentioned the drumming from Tre and I do totally agree that more emphasis has been placed on the drums in this album than previous albums.

So why not the five stars? Don't get me wrong this is a fantastic album, but I feel the album does lack proper ballads. The songs are great but the chords of American Idiot, Jesus of Suburbia and Boulevard of Broken Dreams have been lost in some aspects of the album, leading to calmer songs with bursts of chords that we all know and love from GD.

This as many other people have already said, is a hard album to review, as I do now class Green Day as a Rock Band and not a Punk Group, but the maturity that the music has developed and materalised over the 5 years is amazing. I don't feel however this will be their last album, but I wouldn't be surprised if we only saw one or two at the most more from them.

This is a fantastic album, no mistakes about it, the lyrics are what make this album, with the heavy guitar and drumming in places which will keep the older Green Day fans happy.

A brilliant album from a World Class Band!
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on 26 May 2014
If I had just bought the MP3/CD on its own, I would have given it 5 stars; I can't fault the music and it is one of my favourite albums of all time (definitely Green Day's best). But while playing the record itself it feels as if very little thought went into it. It's a huge opera and the fact that there are two disks is very pleasing to me but the music doesn't flow very well. The album itself is split into three acts, with each one having its own distinct motifs and inspirations, but these don't translate to the record; I would have preferred to switch sides in between acts, and not halfway through. But the most disappointing part of all was between the tracks 'Last of the American Girls' and 'Murder City'. If you listen to the album on an iPod for example, you probably won't notice that they are two different tracks as they flow into each other extremely well. On the album however, this is where side two ends and side three begins (i.e. a new record) and having to switch the records just took away from the feel of the album (listen to these tracks to get a better understanding as to what I mean).

Overall the album is fantastic and I love having the physical copy of the vinyl, but unless you're a fanatic like me, stick to the MP3 or CD version.
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on 4 June 2009
If you thought Green Day couldn't possibly follow the success of American Idiot, think again! This is an outstanding album. The songs immediately seem familiar as it's that classic and unmistakable Green Day sound. Like American Idiot, it follows a story - a young couple 'Christian and Gloria' through the mess and promise of politics, war and the establishment.
The songs are catchy and once inside your head , will be reluctant to leave. I'd recommend this to anyone. It may take 2 or 3 plays to get the gist of the lyrics as they are not as clear and defined as on American Idiot, but the music will be a hit from the first play.

This special edition is very clever - it comes as a 'book' with fill colour pages of artwork and all the lyrics (apparently in Billie-Joe's handwriting) and the CD is cleverly inserted inside the back cover.
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on 16 March 2016
Bought this for my daughter and she loves it. It does contain some swearing though but she's 13 so its nothing she doesn't hear at school.
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on 15 June 2016
One of my new favourite Green Day albums. This album contains many great songs (including 21 guns), and has very good sound quality in comparison to some of the older Green Day albums. Several of the tracks lead into each other seamlessly, meaning I've never even considered using shuffle - It'd ruin the greatness of this album.
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on 27 May 2009
I've been a huge fan since '94 so I might be a bit biased but this CD is awesome. Continues in the vein of 'American Idiot' but takes the theme of post-modern angst and frustration into the post-Bush era where there is not a clear scapegoat. Big sound, catchy lyrics and riffs, good song-to-song variation. Long may Greenday keep pumping out albums like this!
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on 15 December 2016
thank you
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on 2 October 2017
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on 2 April 2014
Everyone cites American Idiot as Green Day's greatest album, it is not, it is a classic yes but this is so much better....less poppy but awesome still the same
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