Three Punk Rock Playlists
Two Digits Throughout History
And the debut of Mac McFis-ty
On Friday, November 15, 2013, I unveiled a the first in a 5-part segment on punk rock. The quintet of posts would be a love letter to the music genre, as I hold punk in very high regard. (Clarence’s loves are known as the 3 P’s: punk, pilsner, and, well, this is a family blog, so we’ll leave it at that.)
I didn’t reveal the breakdown of the five posts at the time, but here’s what it came down to (click the links to review if you're killing time):
- 1970’s punk, excepting three pillars
- The Ramones
- The Clash
- The Sex Pistols
- 1980’s through today’s punk
And so today I determine not to drag this out any further. It’s not all that fascinating a series of posts, and if this year has taught us anything, we just don’t know how long we have on this orb. I’d hate to have our intern have to finish this for me posthumously. Here we go, Parts 3, 4, and 5. In pieces. In reverse. Punk rock.
Holiday in Clarencia: Punk Chronicles Vol. 3
-1980's until today-
Punk was preheated in the late 1960’s by The Stooges and MC5 and the like, prepped a bit in the early 70’s by the New York Dolls and T. Rex and friends, and then served up at the end of the decade by the horde of acts listed in Chapter 1 of this bus wreck and beyond. So what happened next?
The early 80’s saw some continuity; The Ramones, Dead Kennedys, and Black Flag kept on keepin’ on, while newcomers like X, Descendents, Minor Threat, and Social Distortion assumed the mantle. But… a number of bands previously punk now fell more into the new wave synth and melody, even they retained their punk f-u sensibilities. Devo, I’m looking at you. The Jam began flexing muscles that had a whiff of Motown. Blondie went pop, and for a second, hip-hop. Talking Heads got really good, but went to world music and a dozen other genres. And a bunch of groups who were pretty much punk could better be labeled something else. Bad Brains (hardcore), The Misfits (horror rock), The Cramps (psychobilly), and a whole lot of music that now got called “alternative rock.”
Hell, there are way, way too many categories and tons of crossover to where it’s pointless to even try: pop-punk, underground, indie, garage rock, post-punk, ska-core, 15 kinds of metal, alt-whatever, grunge, and just rock and roll. Random Idiots were as punk as they got, but the label filed them under “death reggae” and “folk speed metal.” What a mess.
So let’s not get hung up on rigid genre characterization. Let’s listen to some music. Enjoy the Spotify playlist below that is compiled of 69 Punk or Punkish tunes from 1980-2016. There are the usual suspects (Dropkick Murphys, Green Day, The Minutemen, Fugazi), but more than a few random surprises. Feedback and favorites welcomed.
It’s not really safe for work. You figured that, I figure.