Smash! Green Day, The Off­spring, NOFX & The 90s Punk Ex­plo­sion

Ian Win­wood DA CAPO

Classic Rock - - Stuff - John Ai­zle­wood

The most un­likely mu­si­cal revo­lu­tion since the 70s punk ex­plo­sion.

By the late 80s, punk was deader than disco in the US, mostly re­stricted to the Gil­man, a tiny Bay Area club which banned drink, drugs and dogs. The jour­ney from un­der­ground to globe­con­quer­ing main­stream was a clas­sic case of the right peo­ple – from Bad Re­li­gion’s heroin-lov­ing Brett Gure­witz, a busi­ness­men as much as a punk, to Green Day’s fiercely am­bi­tious Bil­lie Joe Arm­strong – and the right mu­sic, which got bet­ter as it be­came more pop­u­lar.

With the dis­tance that be­ing Bri­tish brings, but no shortage of ac­cess, Ian Win­wood is a sharpeyed guide to a wide-eyed tale packed with curve balls, cameos (did Far­rah Fawcett-Ma­jors re­ally leave California to pur­sue Cap­tain Sen­si­ble?), be­tray­als and friend­ships.

Hav­ing ex­plained the ex­plo­sion bril­liantly, Win­wood halts the saga at Amer­i­can Id­iot, wholly omit­ting the causes of Arm­strong’s fu­ture melt­down; not to men­tion NOFX’s postVe­gas-shoot­ing id­iocy, The Off­spring’s stu­dio paral­y­sis and Bad Re­li­gion’s re-birth. Vol­ume 2, per­haps?

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