Every now and then I will go and revisit the music that I listened to in high school. My buddy Tyler burned three CDs for me but had a good combo of pop, alt rock, and pop punk, and these albums were like a Bible to me. I didn’t love every song, but they became the soundtrack of my final couple years of high school.
While a lot of the songs I revisit from those tracks have an air of high school pseudo-deepness (avoid Simple Plan at all costs), one that continues to blow me away is “Flagpole Sitta” by Harvey Danger.
Though it’s “pop punk” genre listing would lump it with the likes of Good Charlotte and blink-182. But it really sounds quite different: I was reminded of the hyper-tuneful indie punk by Jeff Rosenstock. This song even has the trademark blend of biting commentary and confessional self-deprecation that would make Jeff the signature artist of my brothers’ 20s.
“Flagpole Sitta” opens with an extended masturbation reference and gradually builds to the narrator going insane. The lyrics are astonishingly good, actually; it’s one clever line after another. The melody is also stand-out, with a jaunty rhythm and a soaring chorus. “Flagpole Sitta” is truly an enduring classic.