4

Green Day

Listening to Green Day's major label debut, Dookie, in 1994, who could have imagined that they'd be a video game in 2010? Not me, certainly. For one, the idea of a video game branded to a rock band was still pretty far-fetched, despite Midway's Revolution X arcade game, a standard rail shooter that forced players to rescue the members of Aerosmith. (Remember, this was pre-"I Don't Want to Miss a Thing," so the idea of rescuing Steven Tyler from terrorists was not, in and of itself, objectionable.) Also, however, there's the fact that Green Day was a punk band that made its bones in the sternly anti-corporate Berkeley punk scene. Oddly, they were arguably far less controversial then, singing songs about smoking up and whacking off but never really taking on heavy-hitters like Christianity, American values, and the Bush administration. Is it more surprising that Green Day have their own Rock Band franchise or that they did so after they got more serious? It's a unique — or at least rarely followed — trajectory, and evidence that this trio may just be the most important band of the '90s, all things considered. If you missed them the first time their grand-scale 21st Century Breakdown tour came to town, see it this time. Who knows where they'll be in another 15 years?

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