Ranking every single song from the ‘Punk Goes Acoustic’ series

Fearless Records punk goes

A few months back, I went through and ranked the thirty best songs from the overall Punk Goes… series, and only got into a few arguments about it. It was a lot of fun, but an overwhelming amount of work in ways. However, I knew it would only be a certain amount of time before diving down this sort of rabbit hole — after all, cover songs still aren’t going anywhere (see: three of Five Finger Death Punch’s [random genre switch, I know] biggest radio songs being covers).

What was a little unexpected, though, was returning to do another list of this beloved Punk Goes… series. However, the surprise — albeit a pleasant one — of Punk Goes… returning for a third volume of their acoustic series made it clear: I would need to rank the tracks from all three volumes. So, with Punk Goes Acoustic Vol. 3 out today via Fearless Records, we thought it was the perfect time so you could listen to the whole record, make a list of your own, and yell at me on Twitter about it.

There were two rules for the last list; however, since I’m simply covering all of the acoustic songs from all three releases, this will be a lot easier. One note worth mentioning: while I will be ranking every song that appeared across the three volumes, I will only be providing a detailed explanation for the top ten. For my time’s sake and your time’s sake as well.

Read my list below, and pick up your copy of Punk Goes Acoustic Vol. 3 now.

1) All Time Low – “Jasey Rae” – Volume 2

Back in March, I wrote that this acoustic rendition of “Jasey Rae” is so good that sometimes I forget the original, full-band version exists. That hasn’t changed. This was my first song from the Punk Goes…Acoustic series to appear on that list, and it takes the number one spot here. Volume 3 is great, but this acoustic rendition still rules supreme.

2) Strike Anywhere – “Chalk Line” – Volume 1

Again, this was the second track from the Punk Goes… series to be appear on my overall list earlier this year. That still doesn’t change. The original is a really great punk song, but the acoustic version takes the emotion and message behind this song to another listen. This one won’t get enough love from those of you reading this.

3) Taking Back Sunday – “A Decade Under the Influence” Volume 3

Hooray! The first appearance from Volume 3 clocks in at number three — poetic, right? Promise that wasn’t planned. Maybe it’s just my overall love for Taking Back Sunday that brings them in at number three here. Adam Lazarra’s voice has changed so much over the years, the southern twang has become more prominent, and it’s great to hear that shine through on an older song pre-twang, if you will.

  1. The Audition – “Don’t Be So Hard” – Volume 2

The Audition deserved better. You all slept on The Audition. Here they take their most popular song and strip it down to it’s core. It’s beautiful, stunning, and makes me wish that their promise at Riot Fest 2018 — where they teased their return — would come to fruition sooner rather than later.

5) The Spill Canvas – “Staplegunned” – Volume 2

Much like The Audition, The Spill Canvas also deserved better. Sure, you could say that they had a minor hit with “All Over You” — but was that enough? No. The answer is simply no. The Spill Canvas could break your heart, put it back together, and break it again all in the same song through Nick Thomas’ brutal lyrics and admirable vocal delivery. Don’t believe me? Sunsets and Car Crashes — that’s all, thank me later.

6) Underoath – “A Boy Brushed Red Living In Black and White” – Volume 3

One of my favorite Underoath songs turned into an acoustic-rock song? Give me a full record of Underoath songs like this. Spencer substitutes his screaming parts for melodic, unclean vocals and it works masterfully. This was one of my most anticipated when I saw the track-listing, and it didn’t disappoint. Enjoy.

7) Sugarcult – “Memory” – Volume 1

Sugarcult is the perfect example of how good pop-punk was in the early-2000’s. You won’t find many better choruses and hooks than on 2001’s Start Static and 2004’s Palm Trees and Power Lines. I’m serious, go listen. Even 2006’s Lights Out is a great record. “Memory” works incredibly well as an acoustic track here, and it lands comfortably at number seven.

8) Mayday Parade – “Three Cheers for Five Years” – Volume 2

Mayday Parade appears so frequently on these Punk Goes… albums and always nail it. Here we get their stripped down take on the very first song they ever wrote as a band, “Three Cheers for Five Years.” I’m a big supporter of Mayday Parade, but I would be lying if I said I didn’t miss Jason Lancaster trading vocals with Derek Sanders. The two are at their absolute best on this recording — do your ears a favor and listen.

9) The Starting Line – “Playing Favorites” – Volume 1

Not my favorite song from The Starting Line, but it’s the only one to be available for this piece — and when you get a chance to talk about The Starting Line, you’re legally required to. Talk about a band that really defines that early-2000’s era for the scene. Remember when Drive-Thru Records was everyone’s favorite label? Even if you don’t, listen to this acoustic rendition of “Playing Favorites” and pretend that you do.

10) Don Broco – “Come Out to LA” – Volume 3

I’m not the biggest fan of Don Broco, which alone makes me a rarity. To make me even more of an anomaly, I’d claim Automatic as my favorite record of theirs. Once you read that sentence, it should be no surprise to see them land at number ten here. This version of “Come Out to LA” isn’t so much acoustic as it is a more R&B-type take on their massive single. Learn to love it.

11) Daphne Loves Derby – “Sun” Volume 2

12) The Ataris – “Eight of Nine” – Volume 1

13) Yellowcard – “Firewater” – Volume 1

14) Mayday Parade – “Take this to Heart” – Volume 3

15) Grayscale – “Atlantic” – Volume 3 

16) Strung Out – “Velvet Alley” – Volume 1

17) Taking Back Sunday – “Cute Without the E” – Volume 1

18) Sherwood – “The Only Song” – Volume 2

19) Dance Gavin Dance – “Story of My Bros” – Volume 3

20) Set It Off – “Wolf In Sheep’s Clothing” – Volume 3

21) Open Hand – “Time to Talk” – Volume 1

22) Thrice – “Trust” – Volume 1

23) Jack’s Mannequin – “Bruised” – Volume 2

24) Noise Ratchet – “Away to the Heart” – Volume 1

25) As It Is – “Okay” – Volume 3

26) Silverstein – “Red Light Pledge” Volume 2

27) +44 – “Baby Come On” – Volume 2

28) Relient K – “Who I Am Hates Who I’ve Been” – Volume 2

29) From Autumn to Ashes – “Chloroform Perfume” – Volume 1

30) Glasseater – “Alone in the World” – Volume 1

31) Movements – “Colorblind” – Volume 3

32) Rufio – “Over It” – Volume 1

33) The All-Americans Rejects – “Night Drive” – Volume 2

34) Thursday – “A Hole in the World” – Volume 1

35) Midtown – “Knew It All Along” – Volume 1

36) Say Anything – “Woe” – Volume 2

37) The Almost – “Hand Grenade” – Volume 3

38) Finch – “What It Is to Burn” – Volume 1

39) Dashboard Confessional – “Screaming Infidelities” – Volume 3

40) Rise Against – “Swing Life Away” – Volume 2

41) Grade – “Gathering Darkness” – Volume 1

42) Alesana – “Apology” – Volume 2

43) Anti-Flag – “Welcome to 1984” – Volume 2

44) Coalesce – “Blue Collar Lullaby” – Volume 1

45) Set Your Goals – “Echoes” – Volume 2

46) Circa Survive – “Act Appalled” – Volume 3

47) Piebald – “The King” – Volume 1