10 Great Punk Rock Love Songs

Sure, punk rock is often about anarchy and politics and partying, but it can also be about love. Whether it's for Valentine's Day or for any other time of the year, you may find yourself wanting to put together a mix disc of perfect songs. We've taken the work out of it for you, compiling ten of our favorite punk rock love songs, both old and new, with links for a fast download (and even links to some great video clips of the songs). Feel free to use this list to put something together for that special someone--we won't tell where it came from.

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Big D and The Kids Table: "We Can Live Anywhere" (2009)

© SideOneDummy Records

These DIY darlings from Boston got their start as a ska punk band in 1995, but the years have seen them evolve and mature as musicians while remaining relevant the entire time. Today, Big D is a band that's "Fluent in Stroll"--creating a sound all their own that fuses ska, reggae, rock and R&B. It's a pretty solid sound by a solid band that was never steadfastly ska, and by making their own sound, they continue to be their own band.

Taken from 2009's Fluent in Stroll, "We Can Live Anywhere" is a testament to running away until the location is perfect, as long as you're taking someone special with you.

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Ramones: "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend" (1976)

Ramones. © EMI Music Publicity

While the Ramones were best known for the fast, formulaic, short songs about goofy subjects that characterized their sound and created an indelible mark on punk music in the U.S., they also played a lot of music inspired by the sounds and harmonies of bubble gum girl groups and earlier California rock bands, such as the Beach Boys. Often, these crooning tunes took the form of love songs, as is the case with the self-explanatory "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend."

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Vandals: "I Have A Date" (1995)

Vandals: "I Have A Date" (1995).

Actually a cover of a '70s song by a short-lived, somewhat obscure California punk band, The Simpletones, "I Have A Date" appeared on 1995's Live Fast, Diarrhea, an album predominantly filled with the humor the Vandals have made their forte. In an environment populated with juvenile jokes, "I Have A Date" stands out for its innocence and sincerity.

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Tiger Army: "Forever Fades Away" (2007)

Tiger Army
Tiger Army: "Forever Fades Away" (2007).

Tiger Army is a psychobilly band with a flair for the macabre, but that doesn't stop guitarist and vocalist Nick 13 from penning the occasional love song, as is the case with "Forever Fades Away," the first single from 2007's Music From Regions Beyond. Granted, he does sing about a dark garden where the two fell in love "like the razor's kiss," but it still manages to avoid being too morbid for a good love song.

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Bouncing Souls:"Hopeless Romantic" (1999)

Bouncing Souls
Bouncing Souls:"Hopeless Romantic" (1999).

The title track from the band's fourth full-length album, "Hopeless Romantic" finds the Bouncing Souls at a point in their career where they're beginning to experiment with their sound while still holding on to the punk intensity they started out with. Today, the band has been together for over 20 years and are still going strong, but this classic profession of love with the self-deprecating line "I'm kinda' lazy and I kinda' stink, but I'll clean myself up for you" is still a song that sits high in their catalog.

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The Briefs: "Stuck On You" (2005)

The Briefs. © Nicole Lucas

A Seattle-based punk band inspired by new wave and pop punk bands like the Buzzcocks, the Briefs play fast, upbeat quirky songs that range  from silly love songs to straight-up punk anthems. This track, taken from 2005's Steal Yer Heart, is a song that would make the Buzzcocks proud, as frontman Steve E Nix plays with perfectly crafted yet quite simple, pop lyrics ("You're pretty cute, you're pretty tough, I'm stuck on you, yeah, I know I'm stuck") combined with revved up classic pop punk tempos.​

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The Descendents: "I'm The One" (1996)

The Descendents
The Descendents: "I'm The One" (1996).

Forming in 1978, the Descendents are one of the pioneers of American pop punk , with a propensity for well-crafted pop punk love songs and pop punk in general. Several songs could be selected from their catalog, but I opted for "I'm The One," a bittersweet tune from 1996's Everything Sucks. The song is about unrequited love, in which the singer bemoans being the friend of a girl he really likes, who goes through bad relationships while never realizing that "I'm the one, I've been here for you all along."

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Blink-182: "All The Small Things" (1999)

Blink-182: "All The Small Things" (1999).

The most commercially successful band and song to hit this list, this song from 1999's Enema Of The State is a song that frontman Tom DeLonge wrote about his wife after she complained that he'd written many songs about other girls he'd known but never about her. As such, the song is a testament of love to her and reveals some real details of their lives, including the line she left me roses by the stairs"-- from a night where she actually did just that.

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Alkaline Trio: "Nose Over Tail" (1998)

Alkaline Trio
Alkaline Trio.

Taken from the band's debut full-length Goddamnit, "Nose Over Tail" is a perfectly written punk love song from a band that was at the height of its creativity and style. The juxtaposition of chaos, clamor and sweet feelings carried in lines such as "your voice like the sound of sirens to a house on fire" is about as good as punk songwriting gets, and Matt Skiba's delivery is both sharp and tender. It's good to see that the band, which departed from this sound after their first two albums in favor of something more commercial, has begun to reexamine it with 2010's This Addiction.

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The Dead Milkmen: "Punk Rock Girl" (1988)

Dead Milkmen. © George Moore

No list of punk rock love songs would be complete without "Punk Rock Girl," the most popular song from Philadelphia's humorous punk band, the Dead Milkmen. The band routinely employed jangly punk melodies and an absolutely juvenile sense of humor, and this song is no exception. Even so, there is something inherently sweet about images of standing on the tables of the Phillie Pizza Company or causing chaos in a mall with that special punk rock someone.

This song is a favorite of many fans, and MxPx even covered it in 2009, on their covers collection, On The Cover 2.