It’s an easy mistake to think that you’ve explored every corner of your favorite bands’ discographies. In reality, though, we’re only getting a glimpse through a small window at their creative ventures. That’s because for every album and EP produced, there are a handful of demos that didn’t make the cut.
Fortunately, we’re often given peeks at some of this content, be it intentional on the artist’s part or through a leak. Some bands, such as Weezer, have even gone on to release entire compilations of previously unreleased tracks. Upon hearing them, though, we’re often left wondering why they weren’t included in the first place.
Here are 10 demos you won’t believe were never incorporated into an album.
“Losing Faith” – The Maine
We’re of the firm belief that everything the Maine does is worthy of album inclusion. However, the band appeared to disagree when it came to “Losing Faith.” The seven-minute track was written for their 2013 record, Forever Halloween, but unfortunately didn’t make it onto the original or deluxe version. The band ultimately let us hear it anyway, premiering it via YouTube in 2015.
“Next To Me” – Cute Is What We Aim For
This was another song that was eventually handed to us via YouTube. However, if you were on Tumblr circa 2011, you might have caught wind of it a few years early. It’s unclear if this ultra-catchy song was a residual of Cute Is What We Aim For‘s 2008 album, Rotation, or if it was meant to be a standalone track. Whatever the context, we’re disappointed that it wasn’t part of a formal release.
“Cigarettes And Valentines” – Green Day
There’s a reason that the artwork on this demo looks so similar to that of American Idiot. Prior to releasing their legendary 2004 record, Green Day had actually been working on a totally different album. However, Cigarettes And Valentines was ultimately stolen from the studio prior to its official release. While a live version of the title track was included on the Awesome As Fuck compilation, a studio version has yet to be released.
“Angels With Filthy Souls” – Four Year Strong
This might actually be one of Four Year Strong‘s best songs ever (and that’s saying something). Unfortunately, it can’t show up its album neighbors because it doesn’t have any. The high-energy, catchy track was released as a demo in 2006 but was never included on one of the band’s many records. In case you can’t place it, the title is a reference to the fictional film referenced in Home Alone.
“Pour Yourself A Drink” – The Academy Is…
Die-hard fans of the Academy Is… will be quick to tell you all about From The Carpet. The EP included several acoustic versions of Almost Here tracks as well as demos of “Pour Yourself A Drink” and “The Fever.” At the time, listeners were hopeful that studio versions of the latter would appear on the band’s sophomore album, but they never did. It’s a shame too, seeing as the tracks appeared to tie sonically to the band’s vastly underappreciated debut EP, The Academy.
“Actors” – All Time Low
All Time Low always leave us wanting more. Truth be told, they could probably drop every song they’ve ever written, and it still wouldn’t be enough. With that said, we’re particularly bummed that we never got “Actors” in any official capacity. The song was supposed to appear on Dirty Work, but ultimately they decided it didn’t fit thematically. We’d argue that a follow-up record should have been written to house it appropriately, but we’ll digress.
“Protection” – Movements
We challenge anyone to find a song more deeply relatable than “Protection.” The fact that it was the first Movements song ever released only adds to the sentimentality. Unfortunately, even after dropping two studio albums, the band have yet to revisit the demo. At least it gives us something to hope for?
“A Name In The Sand” – A Day To Remember
A Day To Remember‘s “A Name In The Sand” is another debut track that never graduated from its demo status. The acoustic track was reportedly recorded in 2003 by Jeremy McKinnon and Tom Denney. It was only leaked via YouTube in 2020 after a CD copy was sold off by the band’s former drummer, Bobby Scruggs. We can only say we wish we’d heard it sooner.
“Peace Of Mind” – The Killers
For a decade, we thought that Sam’s Town was as perfect as it could possibly be. Then the Killers went out and proved us wrong by dropping this previously unreleased demo as a single. There’s no doubt that “Peace Of Mind” would’ve made a valuable addition to their eclectic sophomore album. As shocked as we are that it wasn’t originally included, though, we’re just happy to be streaming it now.
“Another Day” – Paramore
Paramore are one of those bands who are known for their incredible demos. Still, they can be fairly stingy with them. While the band included “Tell Me It’s Okay” on the deluxe edition of their self-titled album, the majority of their unreleased tracks are more elusive. “Another Day” is one of our personal favorites off the fan-compiled B Sides.
Which demos do you think should have made an album? Let us know in the comments!