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6 Artists to Introduce You to The Wonders of Contemporary Pop-Punk Music

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at JMU chapter.

Are you interested in the ever-growing pop-punk genre, but unsure of where to start? Are you drawn to both classic pop lyricism and edgy punk rock instrumentation but can’t seem to find the perfect combination of the two? Pop-punk is a difficult scene to jump into, but finding these artists early on in my exploration made my experience with the genre exponentially better.

Neck Deep

Neck Deep, A Welsh pop-punk band formed in 2012, is one of the biggest names in the genre right now. Lead singer Ben Barlow’s distinctly raspy voice has earned the band millions of monthly listeners on Spotify; they’ve released 2 EPs and 4 full-length albums, and show no signs of slowing down. A few Neck Deep songs to start with are “In Bloom”, “Critical Mistake”, “Can’t Kick Up The Roots”, and “Lime St.”.

The Maine

The Maine is one of the lighter bands on this list and jumps between pop punk and other, more mainstream genres pretty often. Formed in 2007, their unique sound and hard-hitting lyrics have brought in a consistent audience and committed fans. There is no wrong place to start with The Maine, but some of their best songs include “Black Butterflies and Deja Vu”, “Same Suit Different Tie”, “Count ‘em One, Two, Three”, and “Diet Soda Society”. 


Of all of these artists, I have delved into Seaway’s discography the least. However, everything I have heard from them absolutely rocks! Seaway has been described as “classically pop-punk”: loud, fast-paced, and endlessly catchy. They have released 5 albums since forming in 2011 among a group of old high school friends, and their momentum has effectively carried them into the 2020s. Some great songs to start with are “Something Wonderful”, “The Day She Left”, and “Brain In A Jar”.

With Confidence

Hailing from Sydney, Australia, With Confidence is one of the best bands to ease into the pop-punk genre with. They are also, unfortunately, the only band on this list that won’t be releasing any more music; the four-piece broke up in late 2022. Years before this break-up, With Confidence broke onto the scene with their hit song “Voldemort” and even landed a spot on the Kerrang! Green Day Superhits Tribute CD. Some of the best With Confidence songs include “Big Cat Judgment Day”, “Dinner Bell”, and “Higher”.

The Story SO Far

The Story So Far is definitely the heaviest act on this list, because they employ elements from more hardcore, edgier music (particularly lead singer Parker Cannon’s gritty vocals and striking lyrics). TSSF have released 4 albums and 3 EPs since they started making music together in 2007, and are the perfect choice if you’re already into emo music. Some of their best songs include “The Glass”, “Quicksand”, “High Regard”, and “Clairvoyant”.

State Champs

State Champs, another pop-punk act formed in the early 2010s, hails from Albany, New York. Their trademark “hate-my-hometown” angst comes through in lead singer Derek DiScanio’s piercing vocals and bassist Ryan Scott Graham’s rich tone, cementing them as another big name on the scene. Their discography is riddled with hits, but some of the best are “Dead and Gone”, “All You Are Is History”, “Back and Forth”, and “Simple Existence”.

Grace is a junior at James Madison University, majoring in English and Writing, Rhetoric, & Technical Communication with a minor in Creative Writing. She enjoys reading contemporary romance novels, doing yoga, and listening to music!