Green Day Kicks Off World Tour in Columbus
An unfortunate sickness and a few cancelled dates meant that Columbus became the unlikely city for the beginning of Green Day’s world tour and a place for the punk-rock icons to deliver a back-to-basics rock and roll show that the 1500+ lucky fans crammed into the Newport won’t forget for many a year.
The band kicked things off with a pretty clear statement of intent as back-to-back cuts (“Bang Bang” & “Revolution Radio”) from upcoming album, “Revolution Radio” drowned the riotous Columbus crowd with the kind of raw-punk power we haven’t heard from the band since the great pissed-off-at-everything days of, “Insomniac.”
The majority of the set list continued the theme as unexpected old favorites “2000 Light Years Away,” “Christie Road” and “Scattered” found their place among a large chunk of breakout album, “Dookie.” Perhaps, unsurprisingly, zero tracks from 2012’s slightly troubled collection of awesome-songs-lost-among-mediocre-ones “Uno,” “Dos” and “Tre” made the set list for the evening. (“Nuclear Family” made a cameo appearance during the bridge of “Scattered” but that was it.)
The band was able to run for an impressive two hours of sing-along favorites with little downtime but plenty of showmanship during songs as frontman Billie Joe Armstrong patrolled the stage and kept himself constantly engaged with the euphoric crowd while bandmates Mike Dirnt and Tre Cool pounded bass and drums, respectively, and looked as happy to be on stage as I’ve seen them in a long time.
A fittingly political encore of “American Idiot” and the brilliant “Jesus of Suburbia” closed out the loud and fast evening or Green Day’s triumphant return that showed Columbus that even after 30 years as a band they’ve still got something left to say.
As the band left the stage, Armstrong stayed behind, threw on an acoustic guitar and gave a live debut to “Ordinary World,” before giving everybody one last sing-along as that-one-song-from-prom “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)” finished off a brilliant night for the band and fans.
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Matt Ellis is a freelance photographer who covers bands that visit the city and the Columbus Crew MLS team. More about Matt can be found at Matt Ellis Photography.