Since its initial inception in the late 1970’s, the pop punk genre has been a staple of almost everyone’s teenage-year soundtrack.
Whether you love or hate the genre, there’s no doubt that it’s seen massive development over the last five decades or so.
In this article, our team of writers-slash-pop-punk-aficionados have put together an all-encompassing list of (what we feel to be) the 39 best pop punk bands of all time:
39. Hands Like Houses
Best Known Track: Torn
Although this band is best known for their cover of Natalie Imbruglia‘s Torn, they’ve had hits with their own songs such as Sick, which hit number 34 on the US main rock chart in 2018. Their beefy and no-nonsense sound has cemented them as one of the best pop punk acts of all time.
38. The Bouncing Souls
Best Known Track: True Believers
The Bouncing Souls took a while to be recognized as pop punk on a larger scale because of their distinct light-hearted songs with an upbeat style. The new generation fans only discovered their previous releases circa 2001, which sparked their pop punk fandom.
Best Known Track: No Cigar
This Swedish pop punk band broke out into the scene when they released Pennybridge Pioneers in 2000. This allowed the band to return to their signature pop punk sound, which they also revisited in 2005 with the release of their album Kingwood.
Best Known Track: Bring Me To Life
The gothic style of Evanescence’s sound reflects more of a nu-metal genre, however, remains popular on the pop punk radar, especially with their best-known single, Bring Me To Life. They remain influential on the pop punk scene today.
35. Fountains Of Wayne
Best Known Track: Stacy’s Mom
Fountains Of Wayne received Gold certification for their notorious single Stacey’s Mom, which was hugely popular among teens and noughties music fans. The band unofficially broke up between 2013 and 2015.
34. A Fire Inside (AFI)
Best Known Track: Miss Murder
AFI has experimented with many genres in the punk, metal, and alternate rock worlds since their formation in 1991 in California. Their initial gothic style of punk has evolved substantially and no two albums sound entirely like the same genre. Their later releases are classified as post-punk, albeit with that signature pop punk tinge.
33. Yours Truly
Best Known Track: High Hopes
One of the most recent arrivals on the pop punk scene. Australian natives Yours Truly has enjoyed astounding success. Following the release of their single High Hopes, their debut studio album Self Care went on to reach number 19 on the ARIA albums chart.
32. A Day To Remember (ADTR)
Best Known Track: If It Means A Lot To You
The Florida band self-released their first-ever album Halos for Heroes, Dirt for the Dead, which they sold whenever they played live. Their second album What Separates Me From You was released in 2005 and hit number 17 on the Billboard Top Heatseekers chart. Their styles are a combination of metalcore and pop punk, among other genres.
31. Mayday Parade
Best Known Track: Jamie All Over
Mayday Parade not only writes fantastic pop punk music, but they have also been acknowledged as one of the hardest working live bands, playing 194 shows in the year 2010. They are still a firm favorite on the pop punk radar today, while serving as a core influence on countless modern-day pop punk bands.
30. New Found Glory
Best Known Track: My Friends Over You
New Found Glory became popular in the year 2000, with the release of their major label self-titled debut album. Their third album Sticks and Stones gained the Florida-formed band mainstream success. They continue their influence on the pop punk scene alongside staple bands such as Green Day and blink-182.
29. Relient K
Best Known Track: Be My Escape
The lead guitarist of the Canton, Ohio band was clearly a petrol head, as the band’s name was a spelling variation on his car, a Plymouth Reliant K. The spelling of the band’s name was changed for trademark purposes, however they’ve been a mainstream success in pop punk with all nine of their studio albums.
28. The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus
Best Known Track: Face Down
The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus was a massive success on the local Florida music scene. After they formed, however, they struggled to find a label to sign them, so it took a while for them to release their first album, Don’t You Fake It. Their beefy and punchy sound combined with heavy-hitting vocals cements them as one of the ultimate pop punk bands.
Best Known Track: Bad Decisions
Relatively new to the pop punk scene, Australian band Redhook released their debut album Minute on Fire in 2018 and received positive feedback from critics and popularity amongst fans. Their 2021 single, Bad Decisions has quickly become their most played song on Spotify.
26. We The Kings
Best Known Track: Sad Song
We The Kings found immediate success on the pop punk scene with the release of their debut self-titled album. Check Yes Juliet – their first single off the album – received platinum status and sold over 250,000 copies in the USA alone.
25. American Hi-Fi
Best Known Track: Flavor Of The Week
American Hi-Fi was formed in Boston in 1998 and skyrocketed to fame with their single, Flavor Of The Weak, which they released on their debut album. Two of the members have also played as part of Miley Cyrus’s backing band.
24. Rise Against
Best Known Track: Savior
Rise Against initially found success in the underground punk scene, with the release of their albums The Unravelling in 2001, and Revolutions per Minute in 2003. The Chicago band’s mainstream success (and cementation as one of the ultimate pop punk bands) was established with the release of the album, Siren Song of the Counter Culture in 2004.
Best Known Track: My Own Worst Enemy
With 6 studio albums released to date, My Own Worst Enemy remains an anthem for pop punk music. Their debut album – Tripping The Light Fantastic – put them in the pop punk commercial spotlight. My Own Worst Enemy remains their most played song today.
Best Known Track: Ever Fallen In Love (With Someone You Shouldn’t’ve)
The Buzzcocks are easily one of the most influential pop punk bands of all time, alongside Green Day and the Ramones. As a British band, their influence on the Manchester punk scene is unparalleled. The band broke up in 1981, but continued to participate in reunion tours and albums from 2002. Their hooky melodies and happy-go-lucky lyrics paved the way for many ensuing pop punk bands.
21. The Offspring
Best Known Track: You’re Gonna Go Far Kid
Having initially formed under the name Manic Subsidal, The Offspring went on to become a heavy influence on the pop punk scene, reviving the genre in the 1990s. These legends are one of the best-selling pop punk bands in history, with over 40 million records sold.
20. Alkaline Trio
Best Known Track: Radio
Alkaline Trio were heavily influenced by the first wave of punk, though have that signature sheen and polish that’s undeniably pop punk. The three-piece band has been in action since 1996, entering the pop punk scene in 2001 with the release of their third album, From Here To Infirmary.
19. Neck Deep
Best Known Track: In Bloom
Neck Deep’s music is greatly influenced by the likes of Green Day and blink-182, although their edgier and more-polished sound served as the genesis of the pop punk revival in the 2010’s. Their 2017 single In Bloom serves as one of their most popular track to date and won the award for best single at the Kerrang! Awards.
18. Jimmy Eat World
Best Known Track: The Middle
Although Jimmy Eat World was initially formed in 1993, they only burst onto the pop punk scene on a commercial level with the release of the album Bleed American in 2001. They remain a popular pop punk act today, with The Middle still their best-selling single to date.
17. Bowling For Soup
Best Known Track: 1985
Best known for their iconic single 1985, Bowling For Soup continues to influence the modern pop punk music scene. The kid’s show Phineas and Ferb also features BFS singing the show’s theme song.
16. Simple Plan
Best Known Track: I’m Just A Kid
Formed in Quebec, Canada in 1999, Simple Plan broke onto the punk music scene with their debut album No Pads, No Helmets…Just Balls in 2002. The album was a resounding success and featured their hit singles I’m Just a Kid, I’d Do Anything, and Addicted.
Best Known Track: Blitzkrieg Bop
Although closely-associated with the first wave of punk, the Ramones undisputedly laid the blueprint for the entire pop punk genre, from catchy vocal melodies to beefy power chords. They served as a heavy influence on some of the best-known noughties pop punk bands; notably Green Day, Bowling For Soup and Alkaline Trio.
Best Known Track: Scotty Doesn’t Know
Lustra was initially formed in 2001 under the name Seventeen (although they had to change it due to conflicting similarities with Seventeen Magazine). Their hit song Scotty Doesn’t know featured on the film Eurotrip and remains their most popular song.
Best Known Track: Teenage Dirtbag
Although the band does not strictly fall into the pop punk genre, Teenage Dirtbag is still considered to be one of the best pop punk anthems today. Released in 2000, the track went on to chart at number 2 on the UK charts.
12. Fall Out Boy
Best Known Track: Centuries
Fall Out Boy became influential on the punk-pop scene in the 2000s. Each member of the band was heavily involved in the pop punk scene in Chicago before they came together to form Fall Out Boy. Their debut album Take This to Your Grave is still regarded as one of the staple pop punk records of the noughties.
Best Known Track: Memory
Sugarcult was initially formed by their current lead singer, Tim Pagnotta, and their ex-drummer, Ben Davis (who both met during a a smoke break at school). The band’s debut album Static Start featured two of their hit singles; Bouncing Off The Walls and Pretty Girl.
10. Taking Back Sunday
Best Known Track: Cute Without The ‘E’ (Cut From The Team)
Although Taking Back Sunday released their debut album Tell All Your Friends in 2002, the New York band became popular on the pop punk scene with their album Louder Now, released in 2006. The album also saw the release of their hit single, Make Damn Sure, and sold over 900,000 copies.
9. The All-American Rejects
Best Known Track: Gives You Hell
The All-American Rejects have had astounding success on the pop punk music scene. They’ve sold over 10 million albums worldwide and are still touring today. Drawing influence from pop, grunge and punk, The All-American Rejects certainly played their part in paving the way for 21st century pop punk bands.
8. All Time Low
Best Known Track: Dear Maria, Count Me In
All Time Low formed in Maryland in 2003 when the members were still in high school. The band initially hit the music scene by covering songs by blink-182, before going on to be one of the most successful pop punk bands of all time. They were also influenced by the band New Found Glory, gaining their name from the lyrics to their song Head-On Collision.
Best Known Track: Ocean Avenue
Yellowcard is well known for blending traditional pop punk music with electric violin. After a career of successful singles, including Ocean Avenue, Only One, and Lights And Sounds, the band eventually called it quits in 2017.
Best Known Track: Misery Business
The distinct vocals of Hayley Williams make Paramore one of the most identifiable pop punk bands out there. Their 4th album, Paramore, gave the band their number one spot on the US Billboard 200 and various placements on global music charts.
5. Good Charlotte
Best Known Track: The Anthem
Although Good Charlotte’s debut album had great reviews, it was their second album The Young And The Hopeless where the band really broke out onto the pop punk scene. The album served as a blueprint for many future pop punk bands, housing singles, The Anthem, Girls and Boys and Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.
4. My Chemical Romance
Best Known Track: Teenagers
My Chemical Romance’s most successful album was undoubtedly The Black Parade, which they released in 2006. The album received triple platinum status in the United States as well as in the United Kingdom.
Their irresistible combination of emo and pop punk has led them to serve as one of the most influential and well-recognised pop punk bands of all time.
3. Sum 41
Best Known Track: Fat Lip
The original name of Sum 41 was actually Kaspir, with the members rehearsing in drummer Steve-O’s basement while they were still in high school. Formed in Ajax in Ontario, this Canadian band released their iconic debut album All Killer No Filler in 2001. Their first single off the album, Fat Lip, is still one of their most popular tunes today.
2. Green Day
Best Known Track: Basket Case
While heavily-influenced by first wave punk bands such as the Ramones, there’s no doubt that Green Day single-handedly put pop punk on the map in the 90’s and led the charge of the modern pop punk movement we all know and love.
Best Known Track: All The Small Things
While Green Day may have paved the way for pop punk, it was blink-182 who perfected it (in the words of Mark Hoppus himself). Combining pop music and classic punk riffs, the band grew hugely popular among young crowds in 1999, becoming one of the biggest and best-selling pop punk bands of all time.
And there you have it! An all-encompassing list of the 39 best pop punk bands of all time. If you enjoyed this article, why not check out our list of the best grunge bands next?