punk rock


(Editor’s Note: We just bought tickets to the final NOFX tour featuring bands like Pennywise, Strung Out, Codefendants, and The Last Gang to name a few, so it felt like a better time than ever to release this article from the homie Patrick Lamb of Punkrock.blog. If you, like us, endlessly dig punk, you definitely want to check out the site here. Okay, now – please enjoy this article while we piss ourselves from excitement.)

Round II! Critics in the past have tried their best to put punk in its place, underground and out of sight – but rising from such remarks stands unbelievable bands with musicianship that would give even Don Caballero a run for their money.

And with that, we present ten more unique, crafty bands from around the world, from modern-day to classic punk rock bands that perfected the spirit of the genre with a twist of math rock to their sound.

The Toy Dolls


Hidden behind the mask, or sunglasses for that matter, of a comedic approach stands the Toy
Dolls who formed across the pond in 1979. While they might be known for catchy melodies,
what stands out anytime you hear a tune by these crazed madmen are some moments of
complex rhythmic structures that fuel the fire within. Sure, it’s easy to point out their classic
“Nellie the Elephant,” with its obvious stop-start progression, BUT turn up “Dig That Groove
Baby” and notice the changes, the rapid drums, the smooth bass, and that dagger guitar.

Adrenalin O.D.


Another band with a humorous and satirical approach would be none other than New Jersey
native – Adrenalin O.D. (or A.O.D.). During their nine years of reign (from 1981 to 1990), they
solidified a reputation for comedic lyrics with incredible speed. The breakdown within “Rock and
Roll Gas Station,” that moment of stop to utter mayhem with those whining shrieks from their
vocalist – fucking rock ‘n’ roll with a slice of math rock, for sure. Not only that, the pure insanity of
“Fuck the Neighborhood,” a track that is exactly a minute long with an incredible
opening-to-speed progression that seems to constantly build as the singer screams on and on.
It will blow your hair back, as the cool kids say (10 years ago).

Rich Kids on L.S.D.


Hear the bass on “We’re Back We’re Pissed” by Rich Kids on L.S.D. and you will quickly forget
about “Roundabout” by that one affirmation prog-rock band I’m forgetting the name of. Anywho,
the band who formed back in 1982 and helped grow skate punk (actually, you could say
possibly one of the greatest influences on the subgenre) was talented, for sure. That’s easy to
say, what’s hard is finding the exact tracks that exemplify how they blew the socks off of math
rock, because – to be honest – they all do. And with that, make sure to check out my favorite
album of theirs – Riches to Rags released in 1994.For those keeping scores, that’s the same year as Green Day’s Dookie, and, in my opinion, deserves the same recognition as the pop-punk album everyone loves to name-drop. I mean, it is fun to say. I guess.



No one is safe when it comes to Propagandhi, the Canadian punk rock band established in
1986. They’ve created an ethos of pointing out bullshit, no matter if it’s against corruption at the
highest level or their fan base. It’s one of those bands you hear the lyrics to think, and behind those thought-provoking lyrics is sick musicianship – they stop-start, they rev you up with stellar
guitar work, the bass never stops, the drums – fuck. To name a few, “I Am a Rifle,” the hilarious
“Ska Sucks,” and “… And We Thought That Nation-States Were a Bad Idea” showcase the
band’s specialty with clear examples of how math rock should run, and run far away if it knew
what was good for it!

Strung Out


Produced well, without sounding overproduced, Strung Out formed in 1989, offers a unique and
catchy sound that at the same time produces tunes you’d find in your nightmares. Their
haunting musical style moves in and out, blending punk rock and metal, and without (maybe)
intention creates crafty songs similar to math rock. For a taste, check out their popular “Analog,”
or even “Matchbook,” a tune by the band with guitar licks I doubt I’ll ever forget.

The Living End


From Downunder, created in 1994, The Living End produces ballads that will touch your soul,
and anthems that speak to your anger. There is “Prisoners of Society,” featuring a double bass
and a prominent use of electric guitar which sounds like a punk tune you couldn’t find on the
radio back in the 1980s. Their second album Roll On is also a thriller due to unpredictable time changes and genre shifts, where each tune establishes them as a band with a sound (or many) one can appreciate even if you call yourself a math rock fan.

A Wilhelm Scream


1999 welcomed A Wilhelm Scream, a melodic hardcore band from the great state of
Massachusetts. Their balls-to-the-wall attitude with such songs as “I Wipe My Ass with
Showbizz” and “Me vs. Morrissey in the Pretentiousness Contest (The Ladder Match),”
showcase the intricate guitar work of the band, or even “Boat Builders,” with its atypical rhythmic
structure keeps the mind guessing and all of which serve as prime examples of what solidifies
them as a prominent figure in the music world.

The Flatliners


The incredible speed of our next band – The Flatliners – is hard to ignore. Formed in 2002 in
Canada, their discography holds moments of ska, heartfelt lyrics, a fast rap approach, chances
to chant, and secures their reputation as a band that is true and authentic. For a punch to math
rock, check out their album Destroy to Create released in 2005, a perfect example of their fast
style and the band’s complexity.



Strap down before you put on a tune by Retox, a San Diego band that started in 2011. The guitar solo in “Thirty Cents Shy of a Quater” still fucking haunts me to this day. Hell, “Die in Your Own Cathedral” sounds like something from the Twilight Zone. And “Modern Balls” is a prime example of how hardcore can easily give math rock a run for its money. Overall, it’s a band that produces incredible albums and I suggest any fan take the time to hear them piece by piece. Start with their debut, Ugly Animals.



Damn, if this band ain’t juicy. Cause you know, pear. Fruits have juice. Probably not the first
person to say that, but hard not to take the layup. Moving on. In 2014, this New Orleans band
gave us Go to Prison, a self-produced album, that is fierce, non-stop, and solidified them in the
hardcore scene. Turn up “Victims to Be” for an example of their technique, start your day with
the intrinsic guitar work in “Breakfast,” or get fucked with “Grimspress,” the final tune on Go to
Prison that holds moments that reminds one of My War by Black Flag. Once you move past
their debut, you’ll be happy to know the band has produced two more studio albums all worthy
of your time, even if your ears appeal to the math rock sound.