Due to some confusion about what punk bands are, I decided to make this handy little list. Buy a few of these albums so I won’t have to hear “Fall Out Boy is my favorite punk band” anymore.
10. Dead Boys – Young, Loud, and Snotty
Though they weren’t as widely accepted as the Clash, the Ramones, the Sex Pistols, and they’re other contemporaries, the Dead Boys’ blues-influenced punk led the way for bands like Social Distortion and Rancid.
9. The Germs – (GI)
Who doesn’t have a Germ burn? The punk poet Darby Crash’s often cynical (but genius nonetheless) lyrics mixed with Pat Smear’s cutting guitar riffs and Lorna Doom’s repetitive, amateurish bass lines led to some incredibly simple, enjoyable music.
8. Fear – The Record
Fear’s “The Record” was the soundtrack to drunken hazes in the 80’s. With topics ranging from beer, to hate, and back to beer, the music of Fear can be enjoyed by all (especially fans of beer).
7. Circle Jerks – Group Sex
Fast, loud, and under 16 minutes, Group Sex is definitely the Circle Jerks’ best effort to date. They took the speed and lo-fi sound of earlier punk bands one step further and made one hell of an album doing so.
6. Sex Pistols – Nevermind the Bollocks
While I don’t consider them a punk band, their album, “Nevermind the Bollocks”, was nothing but a punk stereotype made available to the mainstream society. In many ways, it both helped and ultimately destroyed punk.
5. Black Flag – Damaged
Many say that Black Flag lost something when Henry Rollins joined. I’ll agree that they were never quite as fun, but Damaged was a serious staple in hardcore punk.
4. Minor Threat – Minor Threat LP
Picking up where Black Flag left off, Minor Threat were the definition of hardcore. Whether you’re annoyed by die-hard straightedge and harDCore fanatics (I know I am) or you are one, no one can deny the great sound of Minor Threat’s music.
3. Dead Kennedys – Fresh Fruits for Rotting Vegetables
Few bands have blended politics and humor quite as well as the Dead Kennedys and still managed to sound so good.
2. The Clash – London Calling
London Calling is considered one of the greatest albums of all time by many (including Rolling Stone magazine). In fact, they were such an incredibly talented band that I can’t even grasp why anyone would consider them a punk band.
1. Ramones – Ramones
Though they’ve become a household name, the Ramones are widely accepted as the first punk band. This album laid the blueprints for all the bands on this list. Simple as that.