Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong has always been big on starting and abandoning mysterious side projects. Maybe it helps him keep attuned to the punk rock chaos that birthed his band, even as he’s grown into his role as arena-rock elder statesman. Or maybe he’s just overflowing with good songs that may or may not work as Green Day songs. Whatever the case, he’s spent many years cranking out music with a bunch of different bands: Pinhead Gunpowder, the Network, Foxboro Hot Tubs. Just last year, he and Rancid’s Tim Armstrong formed a new band called the Armstrongs and released exactly one song. And now he’s got another band.
We don’t really know anything about the Longshot, the new band that Armstrong fronts. The band has an Instagram, but it’s full of mysterious images that look like photographs that have been scribbled over. Meanwhile, the band actively encourages fans to make up rumors: “I think everyone should spread as many rumors and lies about the Longshot as possible.. who the members are. You saw us in a club in Ohio. We opened for Taylor Swift. Just make stories up to the outsiders that are not on this Instagram page yet. Anything. I don’t care.” (They also want you to get a tattoo of their broken-heart logo, which seems premature.)
There’s apparently an EP, but this morning, the band shared three new songs: “Taxi Driver,” “Love Is For Losers,” and “Chasing A Ghost.” They’re all bright, melodic bash-it-out pop-punk ragers, and all of them are as sticky and fun and catchy as you might hope. Honestly, they all sound like Green Day songs, and the new songs could’ve easily formed the spine of a pretty good new Green Day album. But we’re not Billie Joe Armstrong’s boss! He can do what he wants! Listen to all three songs below.
Make all tattoo decisions accordingly.