Dos!, the latest release from Green Day, is also the second of the triple album set which will wrap early next year. Where Uno!, the first album in the series, brought a steady pop-punk attack, mostly in the style for which the band is best known, Dos! focuses more on paying homage to classic garage rock with a variety of well-crafted and heavily-produced batch of 13 songs that clock in at just over 39 minutes. While tracks like “Stop When The Red Lights Flash” and “Ashley” continue to present Green Day’s signature sound, the majority of the remaining tracks sound daringly creative in ways that make some of these tracks the most unique in the band’s catalog.
The album opens and closes with the two quietest songs in the album cycle so far, the latter of which is a heartfelt ballad about and dedicated to the late Amy Winehouse. In between is a rouge’s gallery of tracks that range from profane 60’s-style rave-ups like “Fuck Time,” which recalls the band’s side-project, Foxboro Hot Tubs, the Strokes-y rocker, “Lazy Bones,” and the intense duality of “Baby Eyes,” the album’s best track, which presents a beautiful, positive-sounding melody in the verses which clash with the sinister grind of the chorus, probably the closest to a pure grunge riff Green Day has ever come.
Like Uno!, this album too has a short, experimental section. Instead of the dance beat rhythms of “Kill the DJ,” Dos! presents a dark, classic rock-hip hop fusion called “Nightlife,” which features guest vocals by Lady Cobra of Mystic Knights of the Cobra, and which is preceded on the album by a song titled after her. While “Nightlife” is far from Green Day’s best song, it is notable in so far as it is creatively brave, and even well after 20 years in the business, some bands can and still choose to try new and interesting things, regardless of the consequences. One might even argue that presenting this trilogy of albums the way they have is yet another example.
The album’s production is on par with Uno! with well-mixed and powerful drums and vocals predominant throughout. Additional lyrical references to alcohol and various substances in some of these songs adds even more weight to the ongoing treatment of singer/guitarist/songwriter Billie Joe Armstrong, but with European concert dates still scheduled for next year, fans are hopeful the band will be back and on the road to support these excellent new songs in the near future. In the meantime, the two albums so far released, and the final piece, Tre!, which will be out shortly after the new year, will have to satiate, and if the first two installments are any indication, we should expect something completely different, perhaps than anything the band has ever attempted…