Damian Abraham (lead screamer of Fucked Up and host of The Wedge) is seriously passionate about punk. While his personal top-10 list of singles can't possibly recognize every important act that was overlooked in NOW's album list, we hope it at least gets the conversation started about the underappreciated heroes of our punk, hardcore, straightedge and garage scenes. For example, Youth Youth Youth's groundbreaking 1983 Sin EP deserves some love, but it falls between categories. It's a sure bet you can think of others that should have been included. We're fully expecting angry letters for years to come.
Screamin' Fist (1977)
"The most obvious record to be at number one for anyone who has heard it. A more perfectly realized punk record does not exist. Ask me sometime about why this record holds the key to all hip culture...."
2. No Warning
"This marks the birth of the era of the Toronto hardcore scene where Fucked Up emerged. They were to New York hardcore what the Stones were to American blues, and my god did I love them for it."
Shoeshine Boy (1978)
"Toronto's first all-woman punk band was riot grrrl before many of that movement's vanguard were in elementary school. An absolutely jaw-droppingly brilliant song about an incredibly dark subject."
4. Teen Crud Combo
Suck It (2000)
"Every time I listen to this record I remember how lucky I was to have this band in my life. Pre-Dirty Ghosts and Brutal Knights brilliance. Dwarves worship that at times surpassed the original. (I know that sounds crazy!!!)"
There's No Solution So There's No Problem (1986)
"Despite the terrible mastering, this record is a Toronto punk classic! The BFG's importance to Toronto could fill a book (which author Jennifer Morton did in her book Dirty, Drunk And Punk, which should be in every Toronto household)."
6. Danko Jones
"This song completely betrays the hardcore roots of The Mango Kid and company. Sounds like Rat Fink as played by Suicidal Tendencies if they were an R&B-tinged garage band."
7. Random Killing
Take Our Flag (1986)
"This record is criminally underrated, not just in Toronto but even in nerdy record collector circles that pride themselves on being hip to this stuff. I saw the bass player smash his bass at one of my first shows - it was scary."
8. Marilyn's Vitamins
Meanwhile During The Class War (1999)
"The first band to illustrate to me the injustice regarding which bands make it and which don't. Poppy punk that was too intelligent to find mass acceptance."
9. Fifth Column
"Toronto's punk scene has always had a very intelligent progressive side, and few bands embody this more than Fifth Column. The beautifully prodding Monsieur Beauchamps is one of my favourite songs ever."
10. Hockey Teeth
Jesus Saves! (1994)
"The opening of this record has a sample from a Nazi on Geraldo espousing his beliefs before he's cut off by one of the greatest anti-fascist songs ever: Not So Long Ago. Hockey Teeth were the kings of punk when I first started going to shows, and made me want to be in a band."