Let’s face it: We’ve all had at least one moment in our lives where we’ve questioned if we actually want to stay in our town (and for a lot of us, maybe now more than ever after this shocking election). And we have some of our favorite bands to thank for those ever-so-curious thoughts! Many a musical act has lamented the troubles of their towns, but we’re here to break them down to the best of the best.
10. “Back Breaker” – Hit The Lights
The seventh track off the band’s sophomore album Skip School, Start Fights, the first verse alone of this song will have you gutted with discomfort at its intense lyrics. It’s vengeful and relatable for any youngster hoping to escape from home, using lots of angry metaphors to really get their point across.
Hometown: Lima, Ohio
Best lyric: “On my gravestone for all to see it reads/‘I took this city out at the knees,’ at least”
9. “You’re Not Salinger. Get Over It.” – The Wonder Years
This song is complete with a title referring to the author behind the whiniest teenaged character in all of modern literature. The Wonder Years are no strangers to writing jams about hating the people in one’s town; honorable mentions go to “Won’t Be Pathetic Forever,” “This Party Sucks,” “Leavenhouse. 11:30.” and “Hoodie Weather,” all of which boast similar themes.
Hometown: Lansdale, Pennsylvania
Best lyric: “And they’re tearing up these dead end blocks/Revealing all the shit we wished we forgot/In the shadow of this careless urban sprawl”
8. “Something’s Keeping Me Here” – Real Friends
This song is really as pop-punk as it gets. Vocalist Dan Lambton blends familiarity with uncertainty in this track off the band’s 2011 debut EP This Is Honesty, remembering a simpler time of nights spent at Denny’s with childhood pals (specifically, “Mark”).
Hometown: Tinley Park, Illinois
Best lyric: “There are minutes when I want to leave this town/With the shirt on my back/And Saves The Day stuck in my head”
7. “Come One, Come All” – All Time Low
Hailing from suburban Baltimore, All Time Low has had their fair share of songs mentioning their roots (e.g. “For Baltimore,” “Coffee Shop Soundtrack,” etc.). But “Come One, Come All” has a different tone than their more optimistic hometown tributes. The tune addresses “Mr. DJ,” a radio broadcaster whom singer Alex Gaskarth calls out for being too redundant.
Hometown: Lutherville-Timonium, Maryland
Best lyric: “There’s a mile gone for every minute passed/That I’m wasting space in this town”