Saturday, June 26, 2010

Music is My Life!!! - 30 Essential Punk Recordings

Rock and Roll rules my very soul, much like teenage metalhead Eddie Weinbauer's in the classic 80's heavy metal horror flick "Trick or Treat." Even though he defeated his demonic idol Sammi Curr, Eddie still loved heavy metal in the end. I share this same devotion to punk music. I have quite an attraction and admiration to punk music. I also relate to it far more than any other kind of music. As it relates to this blog, I'd figure I'd share my all-time top 30 favorite punk songs that are essential to any punk fan.

Witness the Power & The Passion...

1. Tie between "Blitzkrieg Bop" and "I Wanna Be Sedated" by The Ramones
The Ramones are one of my all-time favorite bands, so I couldn't decide between these two landmark songs. "Blitzkrieg" is an all-out sonic blast about killing Nazis, and "Sedated" is easily my favorite song of all time. 'Nuff said...

2. "Anarchy in the U.K." by The Sex Pistols
Total obnoxious, in-your-face aggressiveness courtesy of our favorite London lads. Sid Vicious couldn't play for shit... God bless him for it...

3. "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana
An all-out rallying cry for the 90s youth of America, this song meant nothing, yet meant everything... I still miss Kurt...

4. "TV Party" by Black Flag
Showing that even punks can have a sense of humor, Henry Rollins and Co. have a beer-soaked good time watching TV and hiding from the harsh realities of life.
I know... deep.

5. "Institutionalized" by Suicidal Tendencies
Hardcore thrash at its best, this classic mosh-pit must told the story of poor Mike, who keeps getting hassled by his parents and friends for being a little nutty. Like Norman says, "We all go a little mad sometimes." Now get him a Pepsi already!!!

6. "When the Shit Hits the Fan" by Circle Jerks
"I used to like these guys."
I prefer the classic acoustic version as made famous in the 1984 cult classic "Repo Man." And, as funny as it was, it was also a tirade against Reagan-era America. Reagan was a constant target for punkers. Some respect is owed to Reagan for inspiring such timely, hateful punk songs...

7. "Holiday in Cambodia" by Dead Kennedys
No bastard was as clever a punker as was Jello Biafra. With his tongue planted firmly in cheek, he and his band created some funny-as-hell, but poignant punk classics, including this song which tried to convince you to take a nice "holiday" in Cambodia. "Pol Pot!!"

8. "New Rose" by The Damned
One of my all-time favorite love songs, this up-tempo punk 'n roller makes me want to fall in love... possibly with a redhead??? Naw... any chick can be a rose...

9. "Pay to Cum!" by Bad Brains
Classic lightning-paced thrash-em up, this song is more than about prostitution. It's more of a call to arms! It's about revolution! Resistance!! Urgency!!! Uprising!!!! Viva la Bad Brains!!!

10. "Where Eagles Dare" by The Misfits
"I ain't no goddamn sonofabitch... you better think about it baby..."
A rousing, dirty rocker, Mr. Glenn Danzig spearheaded this legendary group, and was responsible for most of the lyrics as well. This little ditty looked right into the void, and appropriately spit a loogey in its face!!

11. "I Don't Care About You" by Fear
The title says it all. Lee Ving really doesn't care about you. Deal with it...

12. "Johny Hit and Run Paulene" by X
A crazee punk-rawkabilly jam that served as an anti-rape song, with a bitchin' Chuck Berry riff. I love X. They were true originals. Poets, punks, practitioners... that was X.

13. "Straight Edge" by Minor Threat
This bite-sized Hardcore masher dared you to live life without sex, drugs or alcohol, and rightly inspired a punk movement in the process. I basically live a "Straight Edge" life. Props to Ian MacKaye!!!

14. "Ode to..." by Beastie Boys
This Hardcore blaster comes courtesy of the Boys from Brooklyn! Before they ignited the hip hop movement in the mid-80s, they were just a group of Hardcore kids who were heavily involved in the New York scene along with Bad Brains, and countless others...

15. "I Wanna Be Your Dog" by The Stooges
A groovy late 60s proto-punker, Iggy wanted to be totally dominated in this song. And he made no apologies for it. And that is what punk is all about...

16. "Kick Out the Jams" by The MC5
Spawning from the same desolate area that The Stooges were from... Detroit, Michigan, this band of rock-and-rollers were full of piss, vinegar, and all-out political rage!!! But, they also wanted to rock your balls!!!!!

17. "Lookin' For a Kiss" by New York Dolls
"You goin' ta church??!?"
If the Rolling Stones were down-and-dirty punkers, they'd be the New York Dolls!! I actually even prefer the Dolls to the Stones (with all due respect). Headed by the incomparable David Johansen, and featuring the late, great Johnny Thunders on lead guitar, these guys were just lookin' for a kiss...

18. "Janie Jones" by The Clash
The Clash showed their fangs on their first record. They were all political rage, dub beats, fast punk, and lovelorn... all on their first album. No wonder they are known as one of the bands that really "mattered"...

19. "Punk Rock Girl" by The Dead Milkmen
I grew up with this song. I had this on cassette!! I love, love, love this song!! I totally wanna meet my Punk Rawk Gurl!!! I wanna go take a walk to Zipperhead, and find a girl who'll knock me dead...

20. "Fairytale in the Supermarket" by The Raincoats
This post-punk all-girl group from the U.K. demanded your attention with their screeching guitars, distorted violinist, and banshee-like vocals from all of the members. This band remains one of Kurt Cobain's favorite groups. I know why...

21. "Warsaw" by Joy Division
Before turning to moody doom punk (which later evolved into Goth), this seminal group churned out this punk 'n roll goodie that proved they were a force to be reckoned with...

22. "Don't Want to Know if You Are Lonely" by Husker Du
This break-up song was mad, gloomy, depressing, and longing at the same time! Only the melodic punkers Husker Du could churn out songs like these. Listen to their landmark album "Candy Apple Grey." It's chock full of 'em!

23. "History Lesson Part II" by Minutemen
NO! This isn't the lame-o Disney band!!! These "fucking Corn Dogs" from San Pedro were named after the fact that they had songs that were mere minutes long. This song is different. It's a nice, slow, melodic jam that pays tribute to punkers from the past like... "Richard Hell, Joe Strummer, and John Doe..." Classic.

24. "Amerarockers" by Scream
I'll love this song forever... Melding a nearly invisible line of Hardcore and Reggae, this is a song you can groove to, and ROCK to!! And it has a universal message about the power of music.
"You dance with me, and I'll dance with you..."

25. "Parade of the Horribles" by Circle Jerks
Yes... this is the total theme song to this blog!! Listen up...

26. "Nervous Breakdown" by Black Flag
From their early days (with Keith Morris fronting before he went to the Jerks), this song was a full frontal assault on your senses!! It's also the ringtone on my phone...

27. "Dance With Me" by T.S.O.L.
"Dance with me, my dear... on a floor of bones and skulls..."
Yes. This song will be at my wedding party. Total Goth-punk ambiance...

28. "Halloween" by The Misfits
Classic Misfits, this song IS Halloween!!! That is all.
"I remember Halloween, this day, anything goes..."

29. "Urban Struggle" by The Vandals
"I want to be a cowboy..."
A song you can seriously mosh to, even if it is about the mortal enemies of punkers... rednecks!!! A genius moment from a genius band...

30. "Born to Lose" by The Heartbreakers
"Living in the jungle, it ain't so hard..."
I truly identify with this song. If Springsteen was a nihilistic, drug-addled punker, he'd write this song. Johnny Thunders was truly one of a kind...

Well, there you have it! 30 songs that rock and roll my soul...
Essential for any punker or any fan of some good hard-rockin' music!!

Here's some examples...
"Fairytale in the Supermarket" by The Raincoats

"Urban Struggle" by The Vandals, and some memorable scenes from the punk movie "Dudes"...

There you have it, boils and ghouls... and as Chop-Top so succinctly puts it,
"Music is My Life!!!"


  1. Amazing post!!! My favorite post yet! A ton of classics you have there. "TV Party" is my official theme song as you may already know. Haha. Excellent job once again, my friend!

  2. Yay!!! Thanks, Morgans. I'm glad you enjoyed it. You're the best...