Green Day's Mike Dirnt: 'We were dealing with a shitshow'

Bassist speaks out about band's recent troubles

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Green Day bassist Mike Dirnt has spoken out about the band's recent problems and said they were "dealing with a shitshow".

Frontman Billie Joe Armstrong was admitted to rehab in late 2012 following an incident at a radio show in Las Vegas where the band's set time was cut short, infuriating Armstrong to a point where he swore at the audience and destroyed his instrument on stage. It soon transpired that the recovering alcoholic had relapsed and was to return to rehab immediately.

In an interview with Rolling Stone, Dirnt recalled the day of the incident and said: "It was very tense back there. They locked us in a room for about six hours. I won't say 'locked'. But I didn't want to hang out in the hallway with everybody's entourage. I felt like a rat in a cage. It was a confined space with a lot of weird people around, people we didn't know wandering in and out.

"When Billie showed up, it was, 'You're not right. What's going on?' I kept an eye on things, and it just went progressively downhill. Me and Billie - we don't play like 12-year-olds anymore. But at one point, I was like, 'Let's goof around. Somehow, we ended up wrestling backstage. I thought, 'If I can just get some of this out of him...' But with the mood depressants and alcohol, it doesn't end up in a jovial party."

Speaking specifically about Armstrong's on-stage tirade, meanwhile, he said: "You know, truth be told, I agreed with what he said, outside of mentioning anybody else. I know that's not Billie. But the bigger side of it - I actually agreed with the rant. But I was watching my friend and going, 'You're out of your fucking mind'. And we were dealing with a shitshow."

He also admitted that he had tried to reason with his bandmate after the incident. "For me, it started off as concern for my friend," he said. "Then it turned to anger. Then it came full circle to 'I'm angry for what you're doing to you. Whatever the fuck is going on, that's not you, and it's gone so far down. You're doing it alone, and you're not letting us in.'"

"Sometimes time you have a friend or loved one that needs you to shake them," he added. "They don't see a path out."

Yesterday (March 1), Armstrong said he was using "prayer through meditation" to help him stay sober after revealing that his bag used to rattle with the sound of all the prescription drugs and alcohol in it. "I started combining them to a point where I didn’t know what I was taking during the day and what I was taking at night. It was just this routine," he revealed. "My backpack sounded like a giant baby rattle."

It was recently confirmed that Green Day will perform for the first time at this year's SXSW festival in Austin, Texas. The trio will be making their SXSW debut on March 15 at ACL Live at the Moody Theatre on the same day of the world premiere of their film Broadway Idiot and also a screening of the documentary ¡Cuatro! takes place at the Paramount Theatre, also in Austin.

Green Day will play London's Emirates Stadium, the huge 60,000 capacity stadium commonly used by Arsenal Football Club, on June 1. Green Day will also be playing this year's Optimus Alive festival in Portugal, which takes place July 12-14.


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