Papa Roach – Infest
I’ll admit it, when I first started developing my own music tastes and not just following those of my parents, I listened to ‘Rap’ music. Eminem was just hitting the public and it was seen as rebellious, but when I first heard ‘Last Resort‘ with it’s fusion of ‘Rap’ style vocals with riffs layered underneath, I knew I’d found something new that I liked. Infest was the first ‘alternative’ album that I bought and boy did I wear that CD out! This had such an impact on me as it was the catalyst to my modern music tastes and started shaping what I listen to now.
The Offspring – Americana
Around the same time as I found Papa Roach, ‘Pretty Fly For A White Guy‘ had been out for a while. With it’s comedy lyrics it was an instant hit with almost everyone. With other songs such as ‘Original Prankster‘ and ‘Want You Bad‘ also circulating Kerrang TV, I knew I wanted to hear more. On the same shopping trip that saw me pick up ‘Last Resort’, I also grabbed Americana and Conspiracy of One. The rawer sound of Americana really struck a chord with me and kick started my love of Pop-Punk.
Lostprophets – thefakesoundofprogress
This one is very bittersweet for me due to more recent events, however here we go… Being from Wales, ‘thefakesoundofprogress‘ sparked my love for homegrown talent and I quickly became a huge fan of Lostprophets, which led to me at one point, co-designing and being joint admin of their fastest growing fan-site. Despite what may have happened since, I fell in love with this album. The punchy guitars and singable lyrics placed this firmly in my favourites and I found myself buying tickets to every local show. In fact, they were the first ‘Alternative’ band that I saw live.
Rancid – …And Out Come The Wolves
I can’t quite remember when this Rancid album came in to my life, but I instantly knew it was a classic. I can remember being on holiday in the south of France and we had driven to Andorra and this was in my CD player. Sat in the back of the car with headphones on, I can remember knowing that ‘…And Out Come The Wolves‘ was something special. You’re hit with a speedy bass solo within the first 90 seconds. Combine this with the crunchy guitars, pop-punk hooks and ska vibes, then you know you’ve got a hit!
Taking Back Sunday – Tell All Your Friends
Taking Back Sunday are a band that I should have been in to from the start, however never really got around to listening to. It was only really when I was at Reading Festival in 2004 that they caught my attention. Their stage presence was captivating and the songs catchy. This led me check out their work and fall instantly in love with their debut, Tell All Your Friends. It was the start of long love affair throughout their career (although I’m not the biggest fan of their newest album, but that’s a different story).
Glassjaw – Worship and Tribute
This band are something special. They’re like a myth. Everyone has heard of them, but not many have seen them. They’ve had no official full length release since 2002, yet still captivate followers like a cult. Worship and Tribute was the first album I hear of theirs after hearing a sample track on a free Kerrang CD. Listening back to it now, it still sounds like a relevant album that could have been released in the last 12 months. A true masterpiece.
Refused – The Shape of Punk to Come
While I was only 11 when this was released in 1998, it wasn’t until around 2003 when I discovered Refused. I had found a track called ‘New Noise‘ which had been wrong labelled as a Lostprophets song but loved it all the same. When i found out who the song was really by, I checked out the album it was from. It just so happened to be ‘The Shape of Punk to Come‘. After listening to it through just the once. It blew my mind, especially considering how early it was released. You can hear that it’s a timeless effort that was ahead of it’s time and has influenced so many bands that followed. A seminal piece of work that is etched in to the history books.
Reuben – Racecar is Racecar Backwards
I stumbled upon Reuben largely by accident. A friend of mine was due to play a gig in Cardiff in 2003, but the venue had cancelled on them in the afternoon. As I was already in Cardiff, I looked for something else to do. Around the corner another venue had a gig scheduled and Reuben just so happened to be there promoting their ‘Let’s Stop Hanging Out‘ single. Their energy on stage and deep sound, considering they have only 3 members, was phenomenal! The next year ‘Racecar is Racecar Backwards‘ was released and concreted my belief in them as one of the best bands in the UK at the time, and still are, even though they disbanded in 2008.
Every Time I Die – Gutter Phenomenon
I first heard Every Time I Die in 2005 while sat at home. I would have been 17/18 at the time and I heard a tiger roar behind me from Scuzz TV which I had on in the background while on the PC. This was followed by some killer riffs and ripping vocals. I turned around to see Michael Madsen sat in a directors chair and I was sold. The song was ‘Kill The Music‘ and I instantly found the rest of the album it was from, ‘Gutter Phenomenon‘. With catchy lyrics and brutal music, Every Time I Die quickly catapulted to being one of my favourite bands, especially when this is combined with their rip-roaring live shows. Now legends on the scene, they have just released what is possibly the best album of their career and are showing no signs of stopping!
Alexisonfire – Watch Out!
Wow. Where to start! I’d be a fool not to admit that Alexisonfire are probably my favourite band of all time. There’s something about the way they brought Post Hardcore forward with their blend of triple-layered vocals and dirty guitars that just resonates with me. The contrast between the pureness of Dallas Green, the growl of George Pettit and the grittiness of Wade McNeil is a killer combo that many bands have tried to replicate, but never to same degree that Alexisonfire have managed. While their debut, self-titled album is notable in itself, it wasn’t until ‘Watch Out!‘ that their signature sound really started to shine through.
Seeing their farewell show in London in 2012 was an emotional show with a monster set covering their entire career, including B-Sides and Demos. While I thought that was the end of the band for good, they’ve since re-appeared for special events and festivals. I doubt that anything will ever live up to the farewell show, but I live in the hope that they will once again tour the UK as they truly are something special to witness live.
So there it is, the 10 albums that made an impact on me as a teenager. If any of you had to make a list, who would be on yours? Feel free to let me know in the comments below, or come hit me up on Twitter 🙂
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Until next time