Believe it or not, pop-punk powerhouse All Time Low released their eighth album, Wake Up, Sunshine, earlier this year. Over their 17-year career (feel old yet?), they’ve moved between labels, experimented with new sounds and flavor fusions to their pop-punk palette and continued to amass new fans from all areas of alternative music.
Even if you’ve been following the band since their high school days, there’s a good chance you may have missed a few gems along the way, hidden on the timeline between monumental moments such as label changes and collaborations with other icons. These tracks all display qualities that are 100% ATL, yet they just don’t seem to get the recognition they deserve. Spanning the band’s entire discography (and even a few unofficial releases), here’s our compilation of their most underrated songs.
13. “Last Flight Home”
Honestly, all of their first EP, The Three Words To Remember In Dealing With The End, could’ve been included. But there’s just something about the energy of “Last Flight Home” that makes it stand out. Maybe it’s the unfiltered eagerness in Alex Gaskarth’s voice that makes it impossible not to root for the boys from Baltimore to make it big. Maybe it’s those irresistible whoa-oh-ohs. Either way, this early effort was all but buried under the weight of the massive success of So Wrong, It’s Right a few years later and is now remembered only by the die-hard-est of the die-hards.
12. “Your Bed”
Showing off a different side of ATL, this dark-pop B-side, added as a bonus track to the deluxe edition of Future Hearts, definitely deserved better. Had “Your Bed” made the initial release, it would have helped to balance out the album’s many upbeat tracks.
11. “Break Out! Break Out!”
“Break Out! Break Out!” is another older track that perfectly captures the infectious carpe-diem attitude that defined ATL’s music in their early days. The song was one of five from ATL’s first full-length, The Party Scene, to reappear on the band’s 2006 EP, Put Up Or Shut Up, and is even the origin of its title. Despite all this, “Break Out! Break Out!” is rarely mentioned, overshadowed by bigger titles with deeper narratives, such as “Coffee Shop Soundtrack” and “Jasey Rae.”
Anyone who’s been following ATL since the Three Words era knows that if there’s one thing these pop-punkers can do, it’s writing a feel-good song. What you may not know is that hidden on the Japanese release of 2017’s Last Young Renegade is one of the band’s catchiest windows-down jams yet. This song should have blown up but, alas, remains a criminally underrated masterpiece.
9. “Under A Paper Moon”
Arguably the most underappreciated gem on ATL’s fourth album, Dirty Work, this stellar track got lost in a sea of songs that felt less authentic to many fans. With its creative lyrics, catchy melodies and vibrant energy, “Under A Paper Moon” is pure All Time Low, which is why it’s especially disappointing that it doesn’t receive more recognition.
8. “Keep The Change, You Filthy Animal”
Ah, Nothing Personal. On an album with so many absolute bangers and insta-hits, it’s understandable that a few would slip through the cracks. However, it’s a shame that this high-energy track hasn’t made many appearances on ATL’s live setlists since the early 2010s (outside of celebrating 10 years of the album in 2019) because its catchy riffs lend themselves beautifully to the stage.
Another hidden Dirty Work gem, “Guts” serves as a reminder that ATL aren’t afraid to get serious every once in a while. Featured on an album better known for its more playful tracks, “Guts” gets lost in the shuffle. The lyrics alone make this song worth remembering, and had the timing been better, it could’ve gone down in history along with their other heart-on-sleeve efforts.
Say what you will about the new avenues All Time Low have explored as they’ve grown and progressed as musicians, but this anthemic track from their latest release, Wake Up, Sunshine, has definitive staying power. Several of the album’s singles, including “Some Kind Of Disaster” and blackbear collab “Monsters,” quickly soared to popularity, outshining gems such as “Safe.”
Leaked in 2011, this lyrically brilliant track teased the June release of Dirty Work but didn’t appear on the album, which is utterly baffling. Gaskarth’s vocals especially stand out in the uber-catchy chorus of this song, which has yet to be officially released.
4. “So Long Soldier”
While Don’t Panic may be one of ATL’s most acclaimed and beloved releases to date, there are still a few tracks that just don’t get the recognition they deserve. “So Long Soldier” is one of them. Rian Dawson’s phenomenal drumming drives this fast-paced, cleverly written origin story, which features impressive vocals, a singable chorus and guitar riffs reminiscent of The Party Scene era. Given the boundless energy in this track, it’s hard to understand how “So Long Soldier” isn’t a staple of ATL’s live show set.
3. “If These Sheets Were States”
A sweet long-distance love song surging with mosh pit energy, “If These Sheets Were States” is another Don’t Panic track that deserves more credit. Not every song from such an outstanding album can be a hit, but this one would definitely work well to balance out the poppier tendencies of ATL’s newer releases while still providing a sufficient spoonful of sugar in a live setting. Go on, just picture yourself screaming your heart out and dancing along to this wholesome song at the next ATL show. Can’t you see it now?
2. “Stay Awake (Dreams Only Last For A Night)”
This one goes out to anyone with a “Before you ask which way to go, remember where you’ve been” tattoo (bonus points if there’s a compass or tiny world map beneath the text). Somehow, the lyrics to So Wrong, It’s Right’s “Stay Awake” became better known than the song itself, which is a shame considering how brilliantly written it was in every aspect. From the emotion-packed “You ain’t the only ones who want to live it up” refrain to the explosive guitar riffs, this song has so many underappreciated qualities.
1. “Painting Flowers”
All Time Low’s clever lyricism and emotive qualities made them perfect contributors to the Almost Alice soundtrack for Tim Burton’s 2010 Alice In Wonderland adaptation. The album featured a handful of other household names, including Mark Hoppus, 3OH!3 and the All-American Rejects. But with Avril Lavigne leading the pack, “Painting Flowers” didn’t stand a chance, especially since it never appeared on any of the band’s future albums. ATL did an incredible job of telling one small part of Alice’s larger story while still making the lyrics and tone relatable for anyone feeling a little lost. “Painting Flowers” is so much more than just a movie soundtrack contribution and deserves to be treated as such.