Before I get into this list, I can see the comments now: 'I can't believe he didn't include this band!' or 'What an idiot, there's no way that should be number 1, because my superior musical intellect says it should be this album'. This is a list of the pop punk, or pop punk adjacent, albums I (me, myself, this guy) have enjoyed the most out of the last 10 years. If your opinion differs, I'd love to see your list.
There may be some glaring omissions from this list. That's because of a few reasons: I forgot about it, I am saving it for a different list, or I just didn't connect with it.
One last thing, before getting into The List, here are some rules:
A band can only appear once on the list.
No EPs/splits/singles, just full lengths.
5. MXPX - Plans Within Plans
Plans Within Plans (2012) marked a return to form, for MXPX. Released in 2012, it came out at a time when I wasn't really following what the band was up to, so it took some time for me to really get into this record. But, when I finally gave it the attention it deserved, it immediately jumped near the top of my list, for MXPX records. The opener Aces Up is one of the best punk rock/pop punk openers, I've heard in quite some time.
Standout tracks: Screw Loose, and Far Away
4. Real Friends - Composure
Composure (2018) won out for my Real Friends pick, because it felt lighter than their previous records. The band has always been known for emotional pop punk, that'll get you singing (and maybe even crying) along. I love their previous efforts, but I felt like this record really opened up their writing abilities. On my first listen, it didn't immediately click like their previous albums had, but the more I listened, the more I loved it.
Standout tracks: Stand Steady, and Unconditional Love
3. The Story So Far - Proper Dose
Proper Dose (2018) was the first record from The Story So Far that I really got into. Similar to MXPX's Plans Within Plans, TSSF seemed to be really gaining steam at a time when I wasn't really closely following the scene. Because of that, it's taken me longer to connect with some of the big records, of the 2010s. When Proper Dose came out, I was all in. I pre-added the singles, and had the album queued up for release day. I was hooked instantly. The production was fresh, and the songs were well crafted, and performed with precision. It has quickly become one of my most listened to records, of the past few years, but it really gained steam for me, this past summer on a road trip across the country.
Standout tracks: Keep This Up, and If I Fall
2. The Wonder Years - The Greatest Generation
This might not make sense, if you read my post, The Wonder Years: In Order. The Greatest Generation (2013) didn't top that list, but it's the one making this one. That's because this record is their best pure pop punk album. From open to close, it's just so damn good. It also features my favourite song from TWY. Not to mention, the closing track is one for the ages. Dan Campbell is one of my favourite storytelling lyricists going, today. Mix that with well thought out arrangements, and you have yourself an excellent record.
Standout tracks: Dismantling Summer, and I Just Want To Sell Out My Funeral
I didn't discover this record until we did an episode on it. What I came to learn was that Alkaline Trio is just as good, in the latter half of their career, as they were in their earlier years.
I can't make a list, and not include my Canadian brethren. Plus, how could someone not love the opener, Slam, and singalong every time Ryan Locke sings 'everything is cool man!'. Pure pop punk beauty.
If one Canadian is good, another is even better. This record is beautiful from start to finish. The first time I heard Bearings, they were opening for Seaway, so there you have it.
This record is an absolute giant. The only thing that might keep it out of my top 5 is my forever love of MXPX (and just how good Plans really is) and the production on this record. I love the songs, but the over-compression of the whole record, makes it a little harder to listen to. The songs are such bangers though, that I can often look past it.
1. Trash Boat - Crown Shyness
Crown Shyness (2018) may not make most people's top 5, let alone sit at number one, but here we are. This record blew me away, when I first put it on. I had heard their first record, but aside from the song Strangers, and the Dan Campbell feature, it didn't really click for whatever reason. This album is an entirely different story though. From the spoken intro, on the opener, all the way through the absolute intensity of the outro on Love, Hate, React, Relate this album absolutely slams. It also deals with introspection, and mental health, in a much different - maybe even more mature - way than a lot of their peers.
Standout tracks: Old Soul, and Crown Shyness
There it is. That's the list. It's definitive (not really). What are your top 5 pop punk records of the past 10 years?