The Essentials: Streetcore

In “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World” with impending doom, Keira Knightly’s character grabs several records before fleeing her home with the hopes of listening to them one last time. The Essentials is an ongoing series about the ten, in no particular order, albums I would grab in such a similar situation.

The first night I heard “Streetcore” from Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros is one of my favorite nights. I was crawling through a festival way out west. No, wait, that wasn’t it. It was college. I was with some of my most favorite people. We were drinking mainly whiskey. We had just poorly sung along with Reel Big Fish’s cover of “Take On Me,” a rendition that set the neighborhood dogs into a barking frenzy. Falsetto is hard. It was time to let the night wind down and give the dogs a break. We traded the wacky ska antics of the RBF and put on the calming mellow sounds of Joe Strummer and Mecaleros. The warm night, the chilled whiskey, the good friends, and awesome tunes can always make for a wonderful night.

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The Essentials: Anthem

Anthem

In “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World” with impending doom, Keira Knightly’s character grabs several records before fleeing her home with the hopes of listening to them one last time. The Essentials is an ongoing series about the ten, in no particular order, albums I would grab in such a similar situation.

I was once asked to write why I love punk rock. One of the reasons I wrote was the lyrics often expressed the feelings I had. How I felt like an outcast, and that was okay because there were other outcast feeling the same way. It’s always nice to know the feelings I’m experiencing have also been experienced by others. These sentiments are expressed, almost verbatim, with Less Than Jake’s opening lyrics on their album Anthem, “Welcome home outcast because I know how you have felt over the years.” The whole album is filled with lyrics I feel make for a nice anthem for my life. Perhaps the most aptly titled album in my music library.

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The Essentials: How I Spent My Summer Vacation

Vacation

In “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World” with impending doom, Keira Knightly’s character grabs several records before fleeing her home with the hopes of listening to them one last time. The Essentials is an ongoing series about the ten, in no particular order, albums I would grab in such a similar situation.

I heard someone say nothing gold can stay. When I first considered “The Essentials,” the Bouncing Souls The Gold Record was one of the first ones I put on my list. It is a great record, and was super important at a crucial time in my life. But you expected as much since that theme has been running through The Essentials. The thing about the Bouncing Souls is they create a vast amount of songs that go directly to my heart. And they spread those songs nicely across all their albums. While I still love The Gold Record, I mean I did name this site for a song from that album, lately I can’t get enough of Anchors Aweigh. However, you’ll notice the title up there reads, “How I Spent My Summer Vacation.” Because ultimately that is the album from The Bouncing Souls I would want to hear last.

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The Essentials: …And Out Come the Wolves

Rancid-And-Out-Come-The-Wolves

In “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World” with impending doom, Keira Knightly’s character grabs several records before fleeing her home with the hopes of listening to them one last time. The Essentials is an ongoing series about the ten, in no particular order, albums I would grab in such a similar situation.

I wish I could say it was The Clash or The Ramones or Fugazi that got me into punk rock, but because I was raised in the suburbs of Golden, Colorado I got into punk like many middle-American suburbanites my age, it was Green Day and the Offispring that ignited the punk rock flame. While these bands got me to the party there was one band that made me want to stay and check it out more, and the band was Rancid.

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The Essentials: Hard Rock Bottom

Hard Rock Bottom

In “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World” with impending doom, Keira Knightly’s character grabs several records before fleeing her home with the hopes of listening to them one last time. The Essentials is an ongoing series about the ten, in no particular order, albums I would grab in such a similar situation.

 

It was slightly more than two years ago when Tony Sly passed away. His death really got to me, more so than any other death of someone I didn’t personally know. It took me some time to really understand why.

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The Essentials: An American Paradox

An American Paradox
An American Paradox

In “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World” with impending doom, Keira Knightly’s character grabs several records before fleeing her home with the hopes of listening to them one last time. The Essentials is an ongoing series about the ten, in no particular order, albums I would grab in such a similar situation.

 

In 2012 Strung Out went on a tour where they played their albums Suburban Teenage Wasteland Blues and Twisted By Design in their entirety. These are both strong albums, and honestly I would see Strung Out if they were playing a Barry Manilow album. My pal Jon and I went and were not disappointed. As we walked back to the car after the show I made the weak joke that for an encore they should have played their album An American Paradox. Jon continued by saying or at least the song “Velvet Alley.” Then I added another, then he did, until we named most of the album. It was at that moment that I realized just how much I enjoyed An American Paradox.

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