Pop punk is back in vogue. Not that it was ever concerned about that. The genre perseveres no matter its popularity but lately, it feels like it's surging. Aside from appearing in the world's most popular genres from hip-hop to EDM, there are also plenty of bands turning the attention back onto the genre in its most wholesome form. And the best part? It's female-led bands that are crushing it.
From the East Coast of Australia to the East Coast of the US, there are plenty of women-led pop punk acts that are heralding in a new dawn for the genre. It's time to stand up and hail these acts that are breaking down the doors and making sure everybody hears the new era of pop punk.
Meet Me @ The Altar
Meet Me @ The Altar have just followed in the footsteps of acts like Paramore and Twenty One Pilots by signing with label Fueled By Ramen for their forthcoming EP Model Citizen. The trio from the East Coast of America has been making a name for themselves over the past few years, making rollicking, boundary-pushing pop punk. Their latest song Feel A Thing begins like an arcade game before spiralling into something crunchier with a chorus that punches at the air.
“These are absolutely our best songs to date,” the band said in a statement about their forthcoming project. "With a heavy easycore influence, we hope Model Citizen knocks everyone out of their seats!”
If you're a pop punk diehard chances are you've already been a fan of Stand Atlantic for a minute now. The Australian band fronted by Bonnie Fraser have become one of the most prominent pop punk bands on the planet over the course of two albums. Their second album Pink Elephant was a thrilling head-rush and they've already pushed on with new single deathwish featuring genre-crossing artist nothing.nowhere. It traverses emo hip-hop and pop punk, racing to a chorus that tears its minimalist verses apart.
Last year, Australian band Yours Truly dropped their debut album Self Care solidifying their place as one of Australia's most steadfast pop punk acts. Yours Truly know how to write a blistering pop chorus, taking notes from Paramore's RIOT! Composure tears through muddy guitars for an emotional sucker punch of a chorus while Together conjures an '80s groove with a chorus that immediately sticks. It's no surprise that most festivals are hungry to have them on their lineup with the band playing everything from Download UK to Good Things.
Hey Violet may have deviated slightly from the pop punk sounds of their 2017 debut album From The Outside but they retain its spirit in their current pop music. 2021 single Dear Love was dark and cloudy combining guitars with a haunted trap beat. Current single Problems is much lighter, adopting a trop-house inspired beat but they still manage to infuse it with a bratty confidence. Listening to Hey Violet makes you realise just how much pop punk has spread its web to catch nearly every popular genre over the past few years from dance to hip hop.
Redhook are one of the most exciting new acts in Australia right now. Frontwoman Emmy Mack is a magnetic force with energy that is able to scale some giddy heights. Last year's breakthrough EP Bad Decisions was a trip through rock, pop, hardcore and hip hop. The title track, from example, moves from a pop-infused chorus into a manic rap verse at the tail-end. It's music for a generation of genre-trippers and it's glorious.
Baltimore trio Pinkshift's first tour was brought to a halt due to COVID but it hasn't stopped them from becoming one of the most fast-rising acts in the scene. More than any other act on this list, Pinkshift carry a DIY sound. It's murky and raucous, carrying plenty of raw energy and that's perhaps why single i'm gonna tell my therapist on you is so captivating. The frustration bleeds through it with nothing sanded over. It's all handed to you raw and it's heart-pulsating stuff.
Beach Bunny are one of the great breakout stories of the last year. The US four-piece have managed to captivate the TikTok generation through emotionally unfiltered songs that walk a line between alt-rock and pop punk. It originally started as a one-person project with frontwoman Lili Trifilio expanding it over the years. Still, she's managed to retain that singular intimacy with songs like Prom Queen and Sports feeling like they've been ripped straight from a diary. Their debut album Honeymoon has resonated with audiences far and wide making it likely that they'll be one of the big festival success stories of the post-COVID festival return.