Geek Stink Breath

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"Geek Stink Breath"
Single by Green Day
from the album Insomniac
B-side "I Want to Be on TV"
"Don't Wanna Fall in Love"
Released September 25, 1995
Format CD single, cassette, vinyl
Recorded 1995
Genre Punk rock
Length 2:15
Label Reprise
Writer(s) Billie Joe Armstrong / Green Day
Producer(s) Rob Cavallo, Green Day
Green Day singles chronology
"Geek Stink Breath"
"Stuck with Me"
Music video
"Geek Stink Breath" on YouTube

"Geek Stink Breath" is a song by American punk rock band Green Day. It was released as the first single from their fourth album, Insomniac. The lyrics tell of the effects of methamphetamine on the human body. (The word "geek" is slang for "methamphetamine".)

History, lyrics, and composition[edit]

"Geek Stink Breath" debuted live on December 3, 1994 during Green Day's first performance on Saturday Night Live. The word "shit" in the line "Wish in one hand and shit in the other and see which one gets filled first" was left uncensored since they could not understand the lyrics to the new song (closed caption typed it as "unintelligible lyrics"). The song was later recorded and released on the band's fourth studio album Insomniac (1995), and as the album's lead-off single.

The lyrics tell of the singer leading a "path of self-destruction" through the use of methamphetamine, and the effects of this drug on his body. The lyrics were inspired by Armstrong's own experiences, as well as the people around him that he saw lose control of their lives because of their addictions. Featuring a hard rocking three chord riff, the song pays homage to the band's 1970s punk influences, including the Ramones and the Sex Pistols. The song ended up being a moderate radio hit.

A live version of the song recorded on the band's 21st Century Breakdown World Tour in Saitama-Shi, Japan was included on the band's 2011 live album Awesome as Fuck and its accompanying bonus DVD.

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Length
1. "Geek Stink Breath"   2:15
2. "I Want to Be on TV"   1:17
3. "Don't Wanna Fall in Love"   1:40


Side A
No. Title Length
1. "Geek Stink Breath"   2:15
Side B
No. Title Length
1. "I Want to Be on TV"   1:17

Vinyl Box Set

Side A
No. Title Length
1. "Geek Stink Breath"   2:15
2. "Stuck with Me"    
Side B
No. Title Length
1. "86"   2:48

Music video[edit]

The video shows the band playing the song in a basement, as well as graphic footage of one of the band's friends having a tooth pulled, which was intended to only be shown during late night hours on MTV. This footage is relevant to the song, as it features the lyrics: "and it's rotting out my teeth". (Oral problems are associated with meth use, but are actually related to poor hygiene, exacerbated by dry mouth, both of which are associated with illicit use of some drugs, rather than being directly related to the effect of smoking or otherwise ingesting methamphetamine.) The video was directed by Mark Kohr. An edited version of the music video is shown internationally.

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1995) Peak
Canadian RPM Singles Chart[1] 22
Canadian RPM Alternative 30[2] 1
Irish Singles Chart 27
UK Singles Chart 16
Billboard Hot 100 27
Modern Rock Tracks 3
Preceded by
"Name" by Goo Goo Dolls
Canadian RPM Alternative 30 number-one single
October 16–30, 1995
Succeeded by
"Bullet with Butterfly Wings" by The Smashing Pumpkins


External links[edit]