Sunday, 27 July 2014

Pop Punk Playlist Circa 2003 (Part One)

Pop Punk doesn't have a long history in some sense. Most people would argue that the roots of the music we love today can be found with bands like the Ramones and the Buzzcocks back in the 70s and 80s. But listening to bands that have become popular with the revival of modern pop punk, it seems hard to imagine that their roots were founded over 40 years ago. Pop punk has gone through many stages; it's erupted in popularity many times and in many different forms since The Ramones were around.

However, many modern pop punk bands cite the late 90s/ early 2000s as inspiration for their own projects. You only need to listen to I Call Fives, Stuck in 03, to know which bands they were influenced by. It makes sense that the bands that we love today were inspired by the early 2000s; afterall most of them were teenagers at this point like so many of us. 

To celebrate the importance of pop punk in the early 2000s, we thought we'd share with you our favourite albums from then. Since we did a summer playlist full of newer pop punk we thought it would only be fair to include some albums that laid the foundations for what was to come.Check out the Spotify playlist at the bottom of the post to listen to all of the albums...

1.Brand New - Your Favorite Weapon 
Remember when Brand New was a bit pop punk? Your Favorite Weapon was released in 2001 and is significantly different to all of Brand New's follow up albums. Plus, here's a bit of pop punk trivia for you (don't tell us you don't learn anything from here) - The song seventy time seven comes from a verse in the bible (Matthew 18:22) where Jesus tells Peter he must forgive his brother seventy times seven times. The song was written about a disagreement between Jesse Lacy and childhood friend John Nolan, lead guitarist from Taking Back Sunday. Taking Back Sunday then released 'There's no I in Team' which is their side to the story. Interesting. 

2.Home Grown - Kings of Pop
I know what you're thinking. What the hell is that cover about it? Quite frankly, it is absolutely terrifying. But fear not my friends, Kings of Pop is one of the most awesome albums from the early 2000s. Filled with heartfelt lyrics and punchy choruses, Kings of Pop is the ultimate pop punk album. It was also released on Drive Thru Records which gives any album serious credentials. Drive Thru records was set up by siblings Stefanie and Richard Reines and their label was responsible for the popular upsurge of pop punk/emo bands in the early 2000s. It was home to New Found Glory, Something Corporate, The Starting Line, Fenix*TX and of course Homegrown. Unfortunatley, Home Grown split in 2005 when lead vocalist, Adam Lohrbach, left to create New Years Day. However, that doesn't mean we can enjoy Kings of Pop any less. 

3.The Starting Line - Say It Like You Mean It
We bet Kenny Vasoli cringes every time he sees the video for the Best of Me: bleach blonde hair, long fringe and a man trying to serenade a girl with a stereo outside her window. Alongside The Best of Me, this debut album from the Starting Line is filled with teenage indifference, girl trouble and the joys of being in a band. 

4.Allister - Last Stop Surburbia
Allister released Last Stop Surburbia, their third album, in 2002 and were one of the first bands to sign to Drive Thru Records. Last Stop Surburbia is an essential for any pop punk collection and includes Somewhere on Fullerton which someone named in the youtube comments for the song as the platonic ideal of pop punk. Nice. Here's another pop punk trivia fact for you: Allister made a cameo appearence in the chick flick Sleepover, an awful movie about a girl trying to outdo the popular clique while at a sleepover. Allister play at her prom and things get a bit cringey. However, Allister made the film 100% better and I'm sure it was worth it to work with Steve Carell dressed as an angry police officer. 

5.New Found Glory - Nothing Gold Can Stay
Remember when we were talking about Stuck in 03 by I Call Fives? This is one of the albums in that song and is the debut album from New Found Glory. New Found Glory haven't changed much as a band and we're definitely not complaining about it. The pop punk formula that they barely stray  wrap into every album works every time and has influenced many a band throughout the years. All Time Low named themselves after lyrics in Head on Collision and The Story So Far are named after a song of the same name from Sticks and Stones. Another pop punk trivia fact is that New Found Glory originally had an 'a' in front of their name (like on the cover of NGCS to the right) but had to drop it because fans found it difficult to find the album in record stores. 

6.Blink 182 - Take Off Your Pants and Jacket
Honestly, we could have put any Blink 182 album in here as pretty much every person has listened to some Blink album when they were younger. Take off Your Pants and Jacket was released in 2001 and includes songs like First Date, Rock Show and Stay Together For the Kids. The album also saw the first time that Tom, Mark and Travis would work separately on some occasions due to opposition and contention within the band. The album has sold over 14 million copies worldwide and went double platinum in the first three weeks of its release. The album title is also a pun on masturbation, we'll let you figure that one out.  

7.Fenix Tx - Self Titled
Originally Fenix Tx were named River Fenix and so was their self titled debut. However the estate of River Pheonix, the late actor, filed a cease and desist order against the band which meant that they had to change their name to Fenix Tx. In the video for the track All My Fault, Mark Hoppus makes a guest appearence. At the time, Hoppus' sister was dating guitarist, Damon DeLaPaz. Due to this, Hoppus gave them an opening support slot on a Blink 182 tour and he also became their manager. However, he later dropped this role because of his commitments within Blink 182 but the band were eventually managed by Blink's manager. All My Fault was played in the TV movie Jailbait and the band also made a cameo appearance. 

The Ataris - So Long Astoria
So Long, Astoria is the fourth album from the Ataris and contains the songs 'In This Diary' and 'Boys of Summer', originally by Don Henley. Who know that you could some old geezer's 80s dance song and turn into an awesome pop punk anthem? The Ataris even changed the Cadillac's Deadhead sticker to a Black Flag one; how very fitting. You also have to check out the video for In This Diary, Kris Roe sports bleached blonde hair with a long fringe, very much like Kenny Vasoli in The Best of Me; Kenny would be proud. 
SugarCult - Start Static
Start Static was released in 2001 and was Sugar Cult's third album which includes some songs that had previously been released on their second album Wrap Me Up In Plastic. The album includes Bouncing Off the Walls which features Chris Shiflett (who used to play with No Use For a Name) the lead guitarist from the Foo Fighters playing the guitar solo. Bouncing Off the Walls also featured in the soundtrack for the film National Lampoon's Van Wilder which means the video features Ryan Reynolds and Tara Reid.

Saves The Day - Stay What You Are

Stay What You Are is the follow up album to Through Being Cool which we could have also put on here as both are equally as good. While Through Being Cool is more like a typical angsty pop punk record, Stay What You Are infused emo into the genre and would pave the way for the upsurge in emo's popularity and became influential in both the emo and pop punk community. After the release of Through Being Cool, the band were in a van accident which became the inspiration for the new record and deals with love, death suicide and self discovery. Also, check out the video for At Your Funeral which was inspired by the movie Requiem for a Dream.

If you have any pop punk albums you still love and think should be in part two, email us at We'd love to hear from you...

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