Top 10 Pop-Punk Albums

Pop-punk is one of the most popular genres in mainstream music history - but which album is better than all the rest? See the results of this week's UG poll here.

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No matter what genre of music you love now, there's a solid chance that you've had a brush with pop-punk in your formative years.

Yes, like a first romance, many of us remember it fondly. If you're lucky and don't have a cynical streak, you probably still love the genre and sing those catchy tunes loud and proud.

The big pop punk artists are pretty obvious, but one thing that's never discussed is which band is best. Most of them have sold millions of records, so they're clearly very popular, but which album stands out from the crowd?

That's what we asked UG readers on Wednesday, and as usual, the debate was fierce. We've collected your nominations and votes, and can now present the ultimate top 10 pop-punk albums of all time.

10. Descendents "Everything Sucks" (1996)

After a 9-year break since their last album "All" in 1987 because singer Milo Aukerman quit music to study science (during who the remaining band members starting a side-project, also call All), they reunited and produced this gem. But not everyone liked it - Rolling Stone said their reunion was "unforgivable" and said the album lived up to its title.

09. Good Charlotte "The Young And The Hopeless" (2002)

The first of many examples in this list where a few strong music videos pushed them to international fame. The Madden twins had the punk look, the band had the catchy songs, and it sold almost 3.5 million copies in the US alone. Marketing is great if you can afford it, right? You might not realise, but this album was one of 15 in an experiment to put music on both sides of the disk, like a piece of digital vinyl, where one side had the album and the other featured bonus material. The format didn't take off in the same way as the album did.

08. Buzzcocks "Singles Going Steady" (1979)

This was a compilation of 7" singles by legendary British punk the Buzzcocks from between 1977-79, along with their respective b-sides. It may have started as a way to put all their fragmented singles into one format, but it became one of the most respected punk albums in history and regularly appears in charts of the best albums of the 1970s.

07. Yellowcard "Ocean Avenue" (2003)

If you have a pop punk band and your album sells 11,000 copies in its first week, you'd be pretty stoked to land at No. 61 in the Billboard chart, right? That's exactly what happened to Yellowcard with their Capitol Records debut, but their run of success didn't end there. It went on to be certified platinum after selling one million copies, and gaming fans may remember the song "Breathing" from the "Burnout 3" soundtrack.

06. Jimmy Eat World "Bleed American" (2001)

An ill-timed release and unfortunate name made the band change the title from "Bleed American" to a plain self-title in the wake of the September 11 attack on the World Trade Center. By 2008 the band restored the original title, which is fitting because the album makes no compromises elsewhere - it is aggressive, heartfelt, and everything a real emo record should be. And then a lot more.

05. The Offspring "Americana" (1998)

On the surface it's an awesome album of hook-filled pop punk, but under the surface it's a dark commentary on the nasty side of American life. "They're short stories about the state of things and what we see going on around us," said singer Dexter Holland at the time. "We want to expose the darker side of our culture. It may look like an episode of 'Happy Days' out there in America, but it feels more like 'Twin Peaks'."

04. Sum 41 "All Killer No Filler" (2001)

What started as a NOFX cover band became one of the fastest growing bands in pop-punk history. True to form of the genre, this breakout album covered topics like being lazy, bitchy girlfriends and pigging out on junk food - and their singalong melodies and videos won over an entire generation of punk fans..

03. Weezer "Blue Album" (1994)

When Weezer started out in 1992, no-one in LA wanted to hear them. "We were playing the same songs that eventually became hits," said the band, but apparently audiences just wanted to hear grunge bands. With some practice singing as a barbershop quartet, the band started to cut their original sound on record, and the resulting album remains a fan favorite.

02. Blink-182 "Enema Of The State" (1999)

What teenage boy wouldn't be hooked by either the radio assault of flawless pop-punk or the sexed-up nurse on the album cover? Drummer Travis Barker signed up to the band shortly before this album started production, and his work remains some of the inventive in this entire top 10. In many ways this is a landmark release, and only comes second to "Dookie" because Green Day paved the way for bands like Blink-182 to exist in the first place.

01. Green Day "Dookie"

In a funny way, Green Day and the resulting mainstream pop-punk explosion was the result of the early '90s grunge revolution. Alternative artists were the new hot topic at major labels, and so bosses sent their best A&R reps to scour the underground for the next big thing. Green Day's prior release "Kerplunk" was making waves, and a torrent of major label invites came flooding in to convince them to sign up.

The band ignored these advances until meeting Reprise's Rob Cavallo. They loved his work with The Muffs, and signed up despite a backlash from their adoring fans. Producer Jerry Finn recorded the band as only his second production credit, but he was so good at it that his career became a defining discography of catchy punk records.

The album was a global success, and as we all know, they went on to achieve even greater heights. But for many pop-punk fans, this album remains the real deal, and one that could be impossible to top in the future.

What do you make of the final list? How would you tweak the results, or do you think it's perfect already? Share your opinion in the comments.

244 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I voted Godammit on the Facebook poll. Don't look at me.
    Nvm, Im the creeper who likes a lot of stuff and I saw your comment and liked it lol
    In actually prefer Nimrod but the people have spoken.
    Agree 100% My favorite GD album
    Agreed. For many years they were my favorite band, but Nimrod has always shined even amongst the rest. Stellar stuff.
    im a MASSIVE green day fan and nimrod is actually my least favorite- its still decent though
    "In actually prefer"? Learn to speak English, you idiot.
    oh like we actually put heaps of thought into our comments like you do
    yeah. nimrod is definitely better. i prefer warning overall, but warnings not much pop punk compared to nimrod
    If anything Warning is MORE pop-punk than Nimrod. Nimrod had a thrash song, surf rock song, and a ska song. Warning was way more straight-forward pop-punk. But Nimrod is, personally, one of the best pop-punk albums I've ever heard.
    I gotta say, the intro on that good charlotte album is pretty epic. I would love to hear a whole album like that.
    A lot of the stuff on Chronicles of Life and Death has that vibe to it, specifically In This World & Predictable
    I ****ing love Chronicles of Life and Death. It's a pretty ambitious album and it's still got that wonderful immaturity that the early stuff they put out has, before they went off and started making music celebrating all the things they used to make fun of.
    nice on yellowcard getting on there. that was a solid album front to back.
    After years of dismissing that album as cheesy pop-punk and only listening to their later stuff (lights and sounds is an amazing album), I've recently fallen in love with Ocean Avenue again. It's just so damn good.
    not a terrible list. blink's take off your pants and jacket is better than enema. good charlotte is eh. i liked them at the time of that release but it doesnt hold strong to this day. swap it with new found glory sticks and stones or something.
    Even though im not into pop punk, this is a pretty damn good list. I think pretty much everyone predicted Dookie would be #1 (rightfully so), but I'm happy to see Jimmy Eat World on there.
    no smash by offspring?
    I'd probably say Smash and Ixnay ain't pop punk albums, more proper punk. Smash, Ixnay and Americana are my favourite Offspring albums
    Because Smash wasn't pop-punk. Americana isn't really either, honestly. There are only a few poppy songs on the album. Other than that, it's a pretty dark album.
    I feel like the Offspring always kind of put out poppy-ish singles(not every single, just a lot) while the rest of the album is more punk-y.
    Some of these bands aren't even pop-punk... and you could even debate that most of them aren't...
    Where is New Found Glory? Where is The Story So Far? Where are The Wonder Years? Set Your Goals? Four Year Strong? Weird list.
    Americana was such a great album. Still listen to it on the regular.
    Yep. I've never liked Blink-182, and I kind of fell out of love with Green Day years ago (still listen occasionally) but I think my listening to the Offspring has only increased. Great stuff.
    So how about Saves the Day? Through Being Cool and Stay What You Are? Not that I'm complaining too much about the list. Little confused about Weezer but its a great album
    Damn, what was I doing on Wednesday that I didn't see this!? Totally would have voted for some New Found Glory and would have fought tooth and nail to see Take This To Your Grave on here.
    Take This To Your Grave's a pop-punk gem. I didn't even know this was the Wednesday question. I imagine someone nominated it and got downvoted, though, since it's UG.
    i totally missed it wednesday too. i wish i saw it, great idea for a list, lots of elementary school songs on those albums
    I completely forgot to nominate Rufio's Perhaps i suppose and Motion City Soundtrack, but not a bad list at all.
    I wouldn't consider Weezer a pop punk band. The blue album is fantastic though. I would take that off the list, and include a New Found Glory record, like their self titled or sticks and stones.
    Nero Galon
    Looks like Good Charlotte's The Young and Hopeless album got on here despite it getting downvoted
    Hmmm...if I mentioned Simple Plan, I wonder how much hate that would get
    Idk man, I'll always have a special spot in my heart for simple plan. but that's just me.
    We The Kings, Boys Like Girls, All Time Low!!!! (had to)
    Nero Galon
    I don't like any of those bands. A band I hadn't seen mentioned at all yet though is Taking Back Sunday, one of the better pop-punk bands (I think anyways)
    Me neither. And I mentioned them in the last article. Also a tad bit surprised no one has mentioned The Starting Line yet.
    Gerard Way Jr
    That's more like it. All ****ing terrible bands.
    UG doesn't count the upvotes/downvotes. Those are there just for us to bicker amongst ourselves. The comment itself counts as the nomination.
    I learned how to play guitar by listening to and emulating [i]All Killer No Filler[\i]. I love the first 3 Good Charlotte albums. Pop-Punk is cheesy much of the time, but it's still awesome.
    Then you didn't learn to play guitar.
    I think Dude Ranch by Blink 182 carries more importance than Enema...but on the other hand Enema of the state really put Blink 182 on the map so yeah...I think it's an awesome list.
    i like DR but its not pop punk by any means. punk. sure. but not poppunk.
    In my opinion, same can be said for Dookie. While most albums on this list are 100% pop punk, some don't sound particularly poppy, but they represent it or have a pop punk outlook.
    Pretty decent. Though yeah, I wouldn't classify some of those bands as pop-punk. Still good music though, and who cares about labels!
    Love Dookie, wrote a paper on it for a History of Rock class. Also The Young and the Hopeless is a great record
    All Killer No Filler is my personal favorite here, but this was a great list, none the less
    New Found Glory's Sticks and Stones belongs on here, but a pretty good list overall.
    what is also "pop punk?" How is it defined? Because you could technically make the case for it and say "infest" by papa roach is a "pop punk" album with hip hop tendencies. Some clarification for these lists would be nice. And in the future, can you give us a "top blues" albums? I think that sort of thing would help a lot of kids curious about the genre with a starting point as to what to listen to. Instead of the weekly metal/punk/classic rock/various subgenres lists that nobody can agree on.
    Totally agreed on the "top blues" list idea. Might have to split it though - the difference from the mississippi delta blues of Robert Johnson and the fiery guitar work of clapton is enormous.
    I'm really not a fan of Clapton myself. When it comes to white guys playing the blues, of the british ones, I prefer Keith Richards over him. I'm also keen to make the case for Angus Young and even Tony Iommi. Their early stuff, taken from deep cuts of their earlier albums has some amazing blues tendencies. theres a song off of the first black sabbath album that i think is something like 8 minutes long that has some amazing blues on it. "Riff Raff" off of ACDC's "powerage" album has some great, bluesy leads... I'd love to see more articles exploring ideas on other guitarists with respects to the genres they're in. I'd love to submit a piece about how I'm convinced that Steve Clark, from Def Leppard is one of the most underrated guitarists of all time, and should be up there with the greats, like Jimi or Randy Rhoads. He just gets a bad rap because people like to think Def Leppard was "hair metal" even though they were actually a pop NWOBHM band... His rhythm guitar playing and composition off of the "Pyromania" album is amazing, and that tone was one of a kind.
    1.) Blink-182 "Enema of the State" 2.) New Found Glory "Sticks and Stones" 3.) Four Year Strong "Rise or Die Trying" 4.) Good Charlotte "The Young and the Hopeless" 5.) The Wonder Years "The Upsides" 6.) Sum 41 "All Killer No Filler" 7.) Fall Out Boy "Take This To Your Grave" 8.) The Story So Far "Under Soil And Dirt" 9.) Man Overboard "Real Talk" 10.) Yellowcard "Ocean Avenue" ^ that's pop punk
    I feel like there's kind of a difference between pop influenced punk music, like green day, the offspring, buzzcocks, descendants, and ramones, and straight pop-punk like yellowcard or good charlotte. i'm not making a comment on the list, the list is quite good, or which is better, but the first is more punk music with melody, whereas the second is more like your typical whiny vocals and mainstream guitars that are now associated with pop-punk.
    Is The Blue album considered as pop punk now? I mean, it's like one of my favourite albums, but isn't it just straight up pop, with some punky and alternative influences?
    I'm not really into pop punk, but I'm glad to see Weezer and Descendents here.
    " Green Day paved the way for bands like Blink-182 to exist in the first place." Descendents did that -___-
    Saves the Day's "Through With Being Cool" is a glaring emission, but then again it's not that surprising.
    Pop Punk is still so good though! There are tons of new bands out there that are really doing their thing. The Wonder Years, The Story So Far, Transit, ... and I like this little band called Mile-257 .... its a band that i'm DEFINITELY not in.... nope.
    No clue how Frank Sinatra didn't make the list. One of the best pop-punk singers of all time.
    I prefer Dude Ranch to Enema, but obviously Enema was a more defining album for them as it's what took their careers to the next level.
    Move everyone back and put descendants at number 1 and get rid of good charlote and put in New Found Glory. Also, as much as I Love Weezer, they aren't really a pop punk band. Punk influence for sure, but more alternative rock. Other than that, Solid list