Hey guys! My name is Jesse and I play guitar in a band called The Fly Downs. Choosing a top 10 is a difficult task and I’m sure all of you can agree. As I write this I’m not sure what my criteria will be but playback value and inspiration will likely play a role. If this ever isn’t the case, the reasons will present themselves as I write. In no particular order, here is my top 10:
- Osker – Idle Will Kill
One of my favourite albums, from my late teenage years and on. I used to sing along to this album in the shower and as his voice reflects my vocal range nicely. This, mixed with the fact I love the songs on this album made this a perfect candidate for my top 10. I always end up coming back and listening to this album as well. This was an easy pick for me.
Favourite Song: Animal
- John Creeden & The Flying Hellfish – Stall
This album is more recent than probably any of the other albums will be on this list. When I first saw Jon Creeden & The Flying Hellfish at Beau’s Oktoberfest I was blown away. A perfect blend of folk and melodic punk. The songs instantly get stuck in your head.
Favourite Song: Stall
- Propagandhi – How to Clean Everything
It was hard to choose which album of this band would make it on my list, but I knew that they would ultimately make the list regardless of which album I chose. When I first heard How to Clean Everything I fell in love and since this was the first album that got me into Propagandhi it is the album I chose for my list. Great 90’s punk rock that brought their own edge to classic 90’s punk style. This album is another one I can always come back to and always enjoy.
Favourite Song: Head? Chest? Or Foot?
- Girlband – One Disaster After Another
One of my friends made a mixed cd for me many years ago before the days of Spotify. I fell in love with the song that was on the mixed CD and I made it my mission to find out more about these guys. As it was so long ago there was not much information or music to be found on the internet. I eventually found their Rock for Beginners album on Interpunk so I bought a couple copies of it. After this I eventually became friends with them through social media as the years went on, and they ended up sending me a package with records and cds from a few of their projects. Great guys and great music! A cross between emo and skatepunk and this album and band will always hold a special place in my heart.
Favourite Song: Girl Guns Grenades
- Gang Starr – Moment of Truth
This will be the only rap album on my list. When it comes to rap I’m very picky and I don’t have a lot of artists I listen to. However Gang Starr has a very mellow and sort of uplifting style, and I’ve been a fan from the first time I heard this album. Although some lyrics are “gangsta rap” in essence, there are some songs with meaningful messages behind them as well. Definitely my favourite rap album and one of the few that I can go back to and listen to still to this day.
Favourite Song: Moment of Truth
- Ten Foot Pole – Rev
There are some separations between the people who prefer Scott Radinsky or Dennis Jagard. I happen to enjoy both their voices. I am choosing this album based on the fact they contain my favourite songs and not due to who is providing vocals. Classic 90’s skate punk and this album made a huge impact on the skate punk scene and also made a huge impact on me as well. This was one of the first albums to get me into skate punk. I will always be able to go back and enjoy this album.
Favourite Song: Fade Away
- Belvedere – Angels Live In My Town
This is officially the FIRST band to get me into skate punk. When I was in high school in the early 2000’s my friends and I would download their music off of limewire and kazaa (sorry about that, but I’ve bought merch and albums in recent years to make up for it haha). The fast pace and melodic sound instantly made me fall in love. Thanks to Belvedere for opening up a door that might not have otherwise opened!
Favourite Song: 2nd Column
- AFI – The Art of Drowning
Ohh boy do I love this album. For Christmas I used to get gift cards for HMV and that’s how I used to find music other than download torrents. I had heard of AFI through word of mouth and when I saw this album on the shelf I said fuck it and bought it without knowing what was in store for me. This may be one of the best musical decisions I ever made. This quickly became one of my favourite albums and still makes it in my top 10 almost 20 years later.
Favourite Song: The Despair Factor
- Gob – Too late… No Friends
I first heard Gob on the radio when they had become more famous with songs like “I Hear You Calling” and “Give Up the Grudge”. Although these songs were good they didn’t make me want to go and buy their album. I can’t remember how it happened, but I eventually heard “Too Late… No Friends” and I was amazed by it. Fast 90’s skate punk and they still had their classic Gob sound but somehow it was just so much better than their later releases. This album will be one I can go back to until I’m old and senile, I’m sure of it.
Favourite Song: Extra, Extra
- Fleeba – Since 1999
Last but not least, we have Ottawa / Gatineau based ska punk act, Fleeba. I can’t remember how I heard about these guys but this album blew me away when I heard it. For me it’s similar to Sublime in some ways but I enjoy it much more than Sublime. I think it has the perfect blend of punk, ska and reggae. The band is no more as far as I know but the members continued on in other projects which are also great. If you have a chance I highly recommend checking these guys out!
Favourite Song: Dropout