From an album cover that just screams summer to some of the most beloved pop-punk anthems the genre has ever encountered, Yellowcard’s major-label debut took both the scene and mainstream by storm, making the quintet one of the biggest success stories of the early 2000s. Boasting plenty of beach imagery as well as heartfelt tales of young love and summer romance, Ocean Avenue is still the recently reunited band’s best-loved record, and for good reason.
The Format were only ours for a brief few years, but the band’s legacy lives on in their much-adored sophomore full-length, 2006’s Dog Problems. Their finest work, the disc is filled with jubilant indie-pop that's bursting with horns, strings, and sun-kissed harmonies recalling all the excess and excitement of ’70s pop. The sound might have been retro, but the group led the roots revival with one hell of a swan song.
New Found Glory
Sticks And Stones
The ultimate summer band, New Found Glory’s second major-label disc scored them their biggest hit to date (“My Friends Over You”), but virtually any of the disc’s 12 tracks would have been perfect for widespread FM radio play. Packed with pogo-ready anthems (“Something I Call Personality,” “Singled Out”) and mid-tempo introspection (“Sonny,” “Head On Collision), if Sticks And Stones isn’t burning up your ear buds this summer, you’re definitely doing something wrong.
…And Out Come The Wolves
One of the biggest stepping-stones for punk’s unbridled mainstream success, Rancid’s third album found the quartet melding fast and furious punk-rock attitudes with bristling ska upstrokes. Even after 15 years, tunes like “Ruby Soho” and “Time Bomb” still find a welcome place as the soundtrack to an afternoon at the skate park or a sweaty Warped Tour mosh pit.
The Young And The Hopeless
In an amusing twist of fate, “Lifestyles Of The Rich And Famous,” the lead single from Good Charlotte’s second album, made the Maryland quartet, well, rich and famous. But before the Los Angeles mansions and tabloid romances, the band were still entrenched in the us-against-the-world mentality, acting as the voice for a new generation of disenfranchised youths. Take songs like “Story Of My Old Man,” “Riot Girl,” and “Girls & Boys” on a windows-down road trip, and relive a little slice of middle-school bliss that’s stood up surprisingly well.