70. Stuck in the Middle – The Supervillains
I had the privilege of seeing The Supervillains live when I was a sophomore in high school. I immediately liked them, but I didn’t really dig through their discography until just last year, when one of their songs was reintroduced to me by my brother. “Stuck in the Middle” has a great groove; it’s easy to just sit back, bob your head, and enjoy the music. I love the simple harmonics in the chorus as well as the hip-hop vocal break in the middle.
69. Pyramid Scheme – Mad Caddies
The first Mad Caddies entry on this list, “Pyramid Scheme” shows off all the strengths of the Mad Caddies. Short and sweet, this song boasts a strong beat and simple melodies that are candy to the ears. As always with the mad caddies, the vocals are fantastic and the horns(although sparse in this song) are clean. Just a real treat.
68. Feel The Burn – NEW RIOT
NEW RIOT came onto my radar relatively recently, and since then, I’ve found myself listening to them on an increasingly frequent basis. The hard-rock drumming, catchy ska breakdowns, great horn riffs and strong vocals of “Feel The Burn” demonstrate exactly why: their music rocks hard.
67. Bubble in My Head – Coffee Project
Another coffee project song that follows the same formula as all their songs: simple rhythm guitar, catchy trombone melodies and cute, simple lyrics. What sets “Bubble in My Head” above their other songs, though, is the heartwarming chorus. “I don’t know how to sing, but I’ll sing for you.” This song never fails to put a smile on my face.
66. Don Juan – Suburban Legends
Another early Suburban Legends song, “Don Juan” comes off of their self-titled EP. The obvious stand out aspect of this song is the killer trumpet part, but, as is the norm with Suburban Legends, the amusing, uplifting lyrics are great in and of themselves. In high school, I begged the ska band I was part of to play this song, but we didn’t, because the guitarist couldn’t find tabs. I won’t say I’m bitter, but “Don Juan” is still at the top of the list of songs I want to perform live (I’m a trumpet player, can you blame me?).
65. As the Footsteps Die Out Forever – Catch 22
Tomas Kalnoky has gifted the world with great music for the last 15 years, since the release of what many consider to be one of the best Ska-Punk albums of all time, Keasbey Nights. “As the Footsteps Die Out Forever” tells the tale of Kalonky’s mother dealing with cancer with heartfelt lyrics, catchy horn melodies, and an amazing trumpet solo. I advise you to stick with the Catch 22 version of Keasbey Nights as an album. The Streetlight version doesn’t adequately capture the raw emotion portrayed in the original version, especially with this song.
64. Unstoppable – The Planet Smashers
If I could only use one word to describe “Unstoppable,” it would be exactly that: unstoppable. The persistent, unchanging, upbeat tempo keeps your head bobbing and your foot tapping as catchy vocals and horn parts are played over top. Each time I listen to this song, I can focus on a different part and still be entertained. Vocal harmonies, a catchy bassline and great horn riffs define this song.
63. Think Straight Again – The Barrymores
Rocking dual vocalists and a great balance of horns and vocals, “Think Straight Again” tells the tale of a flawed relationship where communication is the issue. Each half of the relationship sings about their perspective on the relationship, and it really creates a charming song. The stellar horn break in the middle is icing on the cake.
62. The Way That I Like It – The Supervillains
The strength of “The Way That I Like It” lies in how consistent the beat is through the constant changes to the feel of the song. I love the sax part in this song, especially the horn riff after the chorus. The great vocal harmonies give the song extra flavor, and the sax solo in the middle is another highlight.
61. Sweet Adam – Rodeo Ruby Love
Rodeo Ruby Love’s music is as much pop-rock as it is ska. This means their music is catchy. They also have a unique vocal setup, with a male lead singer and 2 female background singers. The added layering in their vocals really adds a lot of harmonic and melodic depth not found in a lot of other bands.“Sweet Adam,” which tells the story of a boy questioning his religious faith (I think?), demonstrates the unique nature of the vocals as well as the strength of the singers themselves. The clear high-point of this song is the ending, with great vocal breaks over hard, clean hits from the rest of the band.