By Cole Parkinson
It’s no secret blink-182 is one of my favourite bands.
And sure, lots people say they love blink-182 but then proceed to say All the Small Things and I Miss You are their favourite songs, and by no means is that a bad thing.
But I think people should really check out their music past their biggest hits because the deeper you go, the better the music is.
So with blink releasing their ninth album called Nine this week (I know, not the most creative title), let’s rank my favourite albums by Mark Hoppus, Tom DeLonge, Travis Barker and Matt Skiba.
The newest album has leaked (and has been getting great reviews from blink fans so far) but I’m waiting for the official release on Thursday.
8. Buddha (1994)
While many had not considered this to be an official release but more of a collection of demos formed into an album, the band have said it is their first album.
The recordings are rough as it was recorded over two days and bassist/singer Mark Hoppus was sick for the duration of the recording so it isn’t a great jumping-off point in terms of what blink-182 is.
It does give a good glimpse into what the band would become over their next couple albums and several of the songs were re-recorded for their next album which was released only a year later.
Favourite songs – 21 Days, Carousel, Fentoozler
7. California (2016)
The first album to be released without founding member Tom DeLonge, and you can tell.
This album was the first to feature Matt Skiba, of Alkaline Trio fame, and being a big fan of Trio as well, I had high hopes for what this album could be.
Unfortunately, the album was pretty cookie-cutter pop-punk and didn’t take many risks, which a band like blink should be doing after being together for over 20 years.
And to be honest, the deluxe edition of the album (which featured an entirely new disk of music) was much better and what I expected when Skiba joined.
Having both Matt and Mark sing on every song was a bad idea and as a 16 song album, it got repetitive real fast.
There are some great songs on here though, especially Cynical and San Diego, both of which have remained in constant rotation.
If the album would have cut a few songs, had better production and been more diverse, I would have liked it a lot more.
Favourite songs – San Diego, Cynical, The Only Thing That Matters
6. Cheshire Cat (1995)
It feels weird ranking Cheshire Cat so low on any list, considering I truly love this album but in terms of blink’s entire catalogue, I love their other albums that much more.
The songwriting is catchy, many of the songs are laugh out loud funny and it’s fast 90s punk.
There are a handful of really great songs on this album including M+M’s, Touchdown Boy, Does My Breathe Smell?, Toast and Bananas and Wasting Time, and that’s not even all of them.
The jokes on Cheshire Cat are juvenile but blink has made most of their money on being man-children and this record showcases that.
This is also Tom’s best work in terms of guitar as almost every single song has a great riff especially Touchdown Boy and Wasting Time.
Favourite songs – Wasting Time, Toast and Bananas, M+M’s
5. Neighborhoods (2011)
When blink-182 reformed in 2009 after nearly five years apart, the expectations were high for the band to record and release a new album.
They took their time though and didn’t release Neighborhoods until the fall of 2011 to mixed reception from both the critics and the fanbase.
It’s definitely a weirder blink-182 album.
It sounds like Tom’s side band Angels & Airwaves mixed with Mark and Travis’ side project +44, both of which I’m a fan of, so I dug it.
I liked this album a lot when it released and I feel the same today, and much of the fanbase has also warmed up considerably to the album.
The major negative about this album is that it feels like it was pieced together rather than a truly collaborative effort.
The band recorded their parts in separate studios and really only talked over the phone and through email, which isn’t a great way to record a highly anticipated record.
Even with that in mind, the record does have several highlights that are great blink-182 tracks.
Favourite songs – Hearts All Gone, Even If She Falls, After Midnight
4. Take Off Your Pants and Jacket (2001)
The band exploded in the late 90s and early 2000s and Take Off Your Pants and Jacket was the first release for the band in the 2000s which furthered blink’s popularity.
Songs like First Date, The Rock Show and Stay Together For the Kids were all hits for the band but I would argue the best songs on the album are the deeper cuts.
Spanning 13 songs, it’s a tight 40 minutes and it’s a really fun album to put on and listen to front to back.
Favourite songs – Online Songs, Everytime I Look For You, Reckless Abandon
3. Enema of the State (1999)
The record that truly broke blink-182 in the mainstream.
Pretty much every person has heard at least one song from Enema, it truly was a massive album to close out the 90s.
Hell, I was born in 95 and one of my earliest memories is watching MuchMusic and seeing the What’s My Age Again music video.
It will go down as one of the biggest and best pop-punk albums of all time and it deserves to have those accolades.
The songwriting is fantastic and every song on the album is catchy and super fun to listen to.
The addition of Travis Barker on the drums though is the biggest plus to the album.
His drumming adds so much to blink-182 that sometimes it’s hard to go back and listen to the drumming on previous albums.
Favourite songs – Going Away to College, Dumpweed, Dysentery Gary
2. blink-182 (2003)
At the time, this album was such a giant departure from what blink-182 sounded like.
Coming off both Enema and Take Off, the band was known for their jokes and signature pop-punk sound, both of which aren’t really featured on this album.
All band’s need to grow up and this album signalled a significant change for the band and with it came one of the best albums released in the 2000s.
I still think this is blink’s best-written album both musically and lyrically, and every song on this thing is fantastic.
Clocking in at just under 50 minutes, it’s one of the band’s longest releases but at no point does it feel too long or drawn out as each song offers different aspects.
Stockholm Syndrome is probably still the best song blink has ever written in my opinion and it’s easily one of my favourite songs of all time.
Coming up with only three songs for this album is incredibly hard so just do me a favour and listen to the entire thing.
Favourite songs – Stockholm Syndrome, Easy Target, Asthenia
1. Dude Ranch (1997)
I go back and forth between Dude Ranch and the self-titled record a lot but Dude Ranch is usually my go-to record.
It’s a fast, catchy punk rock record and every song is so good.
Much like the self-titled record, it’s hard to list only a few songs as Dude Ranch is such a blast to listen to.
Sure, most people have heard Dammit already but the real gems on this record are further along on the tracklist.
Apple Shampoo is a must listen and probably my favourite blink-182 song (along with Stockholm Syndrome) while Enthused is one of my favourite Tom lead tracks.
This record was the last step for blink to take before they reached superstardom but I like this album better because it feels rawer and in your face compared to the shiny, glossy feel of both Enema and Take Off.
If you’re in the mood for a fast punk rock record, Dude Ranch should be near the top of your list.
Favourite songs – Apple Shampoo, Enthused, Lemmings