I’m under no illusions. I know that Blink-182 are not the greatest band that have ever existed. I know their punky stylings aren’t for everybody and they probably aren’t going to be admitted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame any time soon. But I love them. I love them SO much!
They have been with me through everything, since I first started properly listening to music. They were the first gig I ever went to, at the Manchester MEN Arena when I was about 14. I’ve gone to see them every time they’ve played a show in town and I’ve bought all of their albums (one of them twice, by accident) and played them to death.
Even after a decade, I’m still a huge fan of this band. They never fail to put a smile on my face. So, for no reason other than I want to, here’s the list of my top ten favourite Blink-182 (or ‘blink-182’ – lower case ‘b’ – if you’re a purist…) songs!
10. Man Overboard (video) – Not to mention being the song that one of my other favourite pop-punk bands named themselves after, this song is SUCH a fun song. I love the bass riff at the start and the pre-verse guitar riff especially. And I like the structure too – the ending is pretty unique for this genre, how it doesn’t just repeat the chorus but has a completely different ‘section’ to end on. I love it.
9. Adam’s Song (video) – From the very first couple of notes of the riff at the start of this song, you can tell that it’s not a typical pop-pink song. There’s obviously a lot of meaning and emotion in this song and it shows in every word. I love the Nirvana reference (‘Come as You Are’ has the lyric “Take your time, hurry up, the choice is yours, don’t be late.” and ‘Adam’s Song’ has the lyric “I took my time, I hurried up, The choice was mine, I didn’t think enough.”)
8. First Date (video) – This is such a fun song. It really encapsulated the awkward feelings towards girls that I was having around the time that I first heard this! I love the break-down in this song, and the faux guitar solo too. IT’s another one of those Blink-182 songs that has a really simple opening riff that is just iconic now. Well, iconic to me, at least!
7. Rock Show (video) – Another awesome Blink-182 riff! This song was awesome for 15 year old Nic, who was just starting to go to gigs and like girls etc. The chorus is so jaunty and sing-alongable! The rare times that I hear this song on a night out, I go mental.
6. Josie (video) – I love the lyrics to this one. It’s obviously about how much Mark loves and appreciates his girlfriend and the things she does for him. I know it’s soppy of me to say, but it reminds me of my own girlfriend! So for me to get that connection in my head, along with the song being an awesome pop-punk song by my favourite band, this song was obviously going to be one of my favourites! I love the bass riff too!
5. All The Small Things (video) – This song just overflows with happiness. The power-chord riff at the start is so famous now, and the incredibly simple lyric-structure in the verses is so much fun that it’s harder to NOT sing along to it! There;s no technical song-writing reason why I love this song so much, it’s just the great. That’s it. It’s great. “Say it ain’t so, I will not go, turn the lights off, carry me home!”
4. I Miss You (video) – What a beautiful song. Lyrically this is probably my favourite Blink-182 song. There’s so much going on in this song! The riff is incredibly simple and subtle – and subtlety is not something that you will often find in Blink songs! I love how the Riff builds before the ‘I Miss You’ parts and in the chorus. Every time I hear the “Where are you…” part when Tom first comes in, I get shivers. It’s such a great song for their two verses and they’ve composed it brilliantly. It’s nice that they take a break between the first and second chorus, and don’t feel the need to put a verse in there, which is what is expected of a band in this genre – standard song structure. Its also good that they go with a musical outro after the second chorus repeats, and that they haven’t shoved a bridge in there. It’s just a very cleverly put-together song. The ‘Nightmare Before Christmas’ reference is fun too!
3. Feeling This (video) – In and around 2001/2002, the band were wrapped up in side-projects and were arguing about leaving each other out of these side-projects. So, when they got their act together and made their eponymous fifth album, I didn’t really know what to expect. Imagine my delight when this was the first single from that album – a notably more mature but still pop-punk song that comprised of two vocalists, and awesome riff and great energy! The thing that constantly amazes me about this song is the number of overlaying vocal tracks that you can hear in the outro. Just listen to it and try and count them – there are loads! And they all fit so well together! Such a great song.
2. What’s My Age Again? (video) – I’ve mentioned the iconic riffs that Blink comes out with a few times now, and the clean notes played by the guitar at the start of this song has to be the epitome of those riffs! It’s such a sweet riff (in ever sense of the word). The lyrics are funny, the chorus is so catchy and the breakdown with that riff that almost reverses the intro-riff is just cool. The harmonies between the two vocalists are great and I love that it doesn’t end on the typical ‘happy-note’.
1. Dammit (video) – Greatest. Riff. Ever. This is the song that I – and countless other punk fans worldwide – learnt to play guitar with. It’s so simple and cool, no wonder people choose it as the first song that they want to learn on guitar! I’ve loved this song ever since I first heard it a decade ago and I love it even more every day. You know you’re going to love a song forever when you can listen to it so often and it doesn’t get old or start to annoy you. I love the lyrics in this song – they’re not ground-breaking or even particularly clever, but they are just perfect for the song.
And finally, for both a 14-year old me and a 24-year old me, the final line of the song serves as a perfectly pertinent motto that completely sums up what this band has meant to me over the years: “Well, I guess this is growing up.”
Going Away To College
Anthem Part 2
Stay Together For The Kids
When I Was Young
Dogs Eating Dogs