This raw, unfiltered garage rock song finds Billie Joe Armstrong venting his frustration at the chaotic world he's living in.
I'm possessed from the heat of the sun
Hurry up 'cause I'm making a fuss
Fingers up 'cause there's no one to trust
Armstrong explained to Kerrang that the track's message is, "You're out of control of your own body, so you might as well dance."
Speaking with Zane Lowe on Apple Music's Beats 1, Armstrong said he wanted the song to "make people feel bad." He added: "Rock and roll sometimes has become so tame because a lot of rock acts are always trying to look for the feel-good song of the year or something. Everything gets really watered down and wimpy, and I think rock music should make you feel bad."
The song is actually titled "Father Of All Motherf---ers" but the swear has been removed on streaming.
At 2:31, the song finds Green Day returning to their roots. It is one of the Bay Area groups briefest and succinct songs since their punk rock releases of the early 1990s. "I'm really proud of it," Armstrong told Kerrang
. "It represents Green Day in a new way, but in a familiar way where the playing is on fire. It reminds me a lot of (1994 single) Longview
in a strange way, just because it's all of the elements of Green Day just blasting out in a two-and-a-half-minute song."
Green Day debuted the song live on September 10, 2019 Whisky A Go Go in Los Angeles when the band were joined by Weezer and Fall Out Boy to perform sets at the venue to promote their joint 2020 Hella Mega Tour. The song was performed on TV for the first time a couple of days later during Green Day's September 12 appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live.
The song is the title track of Green Day's Father of All...
, album, which clocks in at a mere 26 minutes. Armstrong described the disc to Billboard
as "very high energy."
"We wanted to create a dance groove with space between the drums and vocals [inspired by] the way [rapper] Kendrick Lamar does things or old-school Motown music, where it's leading with the rhythm," he explained.
The record title was inspired by the attitude of Slayer. "I think it was Kerry King from Slayer - they have an album called God Hates Us All, and someone asked, 'Do you really think God hates us all?'" Armstrong explained to Kerrang. "And he goes, 'I don't know! It's just a bada-- title!'"
"As soon as the (Father of All...) title came up, I was like, 'Oh man, this is good.'"
During the recording of this song, Billie Joe Armstrong tried something he'd never dared attempt before: He sang in a sweet, high-pitched falsetto.
"I'm a really self-conscious person," Armstrong revealed to Kerrang. "I think there's a thing about me where - and maybe it's where I come from, coming from such a working class background - it's stifling. In the back of your head, the voices are going, 'Who do you think you are? You're never going to pull this off.' So you end up pushing yourself. I started singing in this strange falsetto, and then all of a sudden you get to the other side 'Holy s--t, I can't believe I just did that.'"
Green Day kept the falsetto vocals, which are heard throughout this song.