At the start of the '00s, all of the dourness of the grunge movement was starting to look really old. After years of being down in the dumps, the collective mindset suddenly decided that we weren't going to sit around and mope about our problems in song anymore. No, it was time for things to get back to the fun-loving attitude that made rock awesome in the first place.
Everything was obnoxious, bratty, and most of all, punk as hell. Long before the era of the TRL bands became a thing though, pop punk had already been making a name for itself as far back as the '70s.
Ever since the inception of the punk genre as a whole, bands were trying their hand at writing pop tunes, just with the attitude turned all the way up to 10.
Though it might not have been the most user-friendly of images, it was virtually impossible to get the tunes out of your head once you've heard them.
Then again, not even your average pop punk band sounded the same as their counterparts either. From the theatrical to just the straight ahead slam fests, there are bands still on the rise willing to turn the genre inside and out. Grab a slice of pizza and get a load of this.
10. Alkaline Trio
Most pop punk bands get the same criticism of being the watered-down version of punk rock. Despite some of the greatest punk acts of all time having catchy melodies, the "boy-bandification" of the genre has been following acts like New Found Glory and Simple Plan around for years. Then again, not many other pop-punk acts were willing to go as dark as Alkaline Trio.
For all of their punk rock street cred, the lyrical background behind a lot of Trio's songs are crazy dark when compared to the suburban sounds of your average pop punk act. Across records like Good Mourning and Crimson, you can tell that Matt Skiba worships at the altar of both The Cure and The Damned in equal measure, with tracks that have more than a little bit of a spooky tinge to it. Whereas most of these would fall into the hard rock spectrum with AFI, Trio has always maintained their rep as a punk act through and through.
While never hitting the massive heights of an act like Green Day, Alkaline Trio have earned their road stripes as a pop punk act, with Skiba eventually finding his way into the latest iteration of Blink-182. Even though they aren't everyone's first pick for punk giants, this brand of goth punk has held its own when put against the candy-fied version of the genre.