Top Ten Punk Rock Bands of All Time (in my opinion)

Unnumbered Top Ten List #1



This is a favorite subject of mine. I will talk to anyone who will listen about Punk Rock. And since I have you’re undivided attention, I’m going to talk to you about it. My favorite era of Punk is probably the eighties, the Punk that was played in this era was called ‘Hardcore’ and it is, in my opinion, the best. Hardcore (Punk) is characterized by simple music played very quickly with intense lyrics, often screamed into a microphone.

This is not a comprehensive list; it is mostly just some of my favorite hardcore bands, listed in out of order. If you are actually interested in any of this music, by all means check it out, ill post links to some good old Punk Rock music.

The Zero Boys

A vastly underrated band in the American Hardcore punk scene, the Zero Boys only released one album in their original incarnation, but it’s a gem. Their songs are very short and played incredibly fast, maybe that’s why the run time on their only, self titled, album is seventeen minutes. Nevertheless, their music is powerful even with its short run time.

Black Flag

One of the most well known punk bands to come out of the American Hardcore scene, Black Flag formed in 1976 in Washington D.C. and formally disbanded in 1986. Their musical style is very heavy and has been described as “slug” and many of their lyrics contain social criticisms. Some of my favorite songs are ‘Nervous Breakdown’, ‘TV Party’ and ‘American Waste’.

The Exploited

The First English band on this list, and perhaps the most ‘hardcore’ of all these hardcore bands, The Exploited are one of my go to Hardcore Punk bands. Their music is not for the faint of heart, with fuzzy guitars riffs played at lightening speed and vocals barked at you by their lead singer, Wattie Buchan (who most of the time I can barely understand) The Exploited are one of the best English Hardcore bands of all time.

Minor Threat

Minor Threat, another Washington D.C. band, formed in 1980 and disbanded, only three years later, in 1983. Their music is simple, yet powerful and creative. Ian MacKaye, is credited by many for starting the straight edge movement. A social philosophy where a person stays away from drugs, promiscuous sex, and alcohol. Minor Threat had a short life span, but there music was so profoundly influential with songs like this one,


A Canadian Punk Rock Band! Hallelujah! D.O.A is a legendary punk rock band that I have had the distinguished honor of seeing live. Many of D.O.A’s songs feature political criticism and the band is very politically active, Joey Shithead, one of the band’s founding member and lead singer even ran for office in British Columbia in 2013.

The Dead Kennedys

The Dead Kennedys are an American Hardcore Punk band from San Francisco. The Dead Kennedys’ music is a bit more clean and technical than some of the music from other bands on this list but the technicality does not take anything away from the music.

The Avengers

What can I say about The Avengers? They’re not a team of superheroes and they play punk rock. They formed in 1977 and formally disbanded in 1979. One of their favorite songs of mine is ‘We Are The One’ take a listen:

The Youth Brigade

A very socially conscious band, out of the L.A. Hardcore scene, The Youth Brigade is a punk band comprised of three brothers, Adam, Mark, and Shawn Stern. Their songs cover themes of youth resistance and unity and the oppression of the state.

The Damned

Another English Hardcore band, The Damned, is much less aggressive, light-hearted Punk Rock outfit. Their music has more of a pop influence and their songs are more about love than social satire but they are still on this list so you should check them out.

Bad Brains

Maybe considered to be one of the best Hardcore Punk bands of all time, the Bad Brains are a hardcore Punk, Funk, Reggae, Metal (?) band from Washington D.C. but they only played Punk Rock for a small portion of their musical careers. The Bad Brains formed in 1977 and release their first full-length album in 1982 and their musical style started to evolve featuring, Funk, Reggae and even Heavy Metal by 1986. Despite their evolution, the Bad Brains are hailed as one of the most talented punk rock bands of all time. Their lead singer, H.R. would sometimes even do backflips on stage during shows.

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