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20 Nostalgic Emo and Punk Rock Songs of the 2000s

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Poppy is the author of "A Bard's Lament" and the Black Diamond series. She lives in Enoshima, Japan, with her husband and young son.

For young people, the 2000s was a time of the early mobile phones, the Playstation 2 and Gamecube, the Bush administration, and the early emergence of social media. It was also the decade of some incredible music. If you grew up in the 2000s, you might be familiar with the term "emo," short for "emotional hardcore."

The word means different things to different people, but there are thousands across the world who are filled with nostalgia (and maybe a little shame) as they remember skinny jeans, dyed black hair, and looping punk and emo music. The fashion and music movement has a lot of stigma for apparently encouraging self-harm, but for most people it's something to be fondly looked back on.

As an impressionable young teenager in the late 2000s, I was all about skinny jeans, eyeliner, black hair, and rock music. If that sounds like you, check out these amazing emo and punk songs from the 2000s for all the nostalgia.

1. “Here I Stand” by Madina Lake

This 2007 song was a hit on Kerrang! and perfectly describes the pain of losing someone you love, which is something we all felt strongly as teenagers. Whether it was a breakup, heartache, or the loss of a family member or pet, everyone could relate in some way to this tune.

Being dumped by my first boyfriend in 2007 meant I could relate hard to this song. It's so good.

2. “Rooftops” by LostProphets

That hair! Those clothes! “Rooftops” (2006) is all about the general frustration of life, something emos could relate with right to our very core. Let's face it - it's still an awesome song.

3. “Misery Business” by Paramore

I remember hearing one of their first songs “Pressure” on The Sims 2. They got really popular around the time they released the 2007 hit “Misery Business,” which catapulted them into fame.

The cheeky punk video of this fast-paced tune was the favourite of a lot of girls (and boys) in the late 2000s and needed a spot on this list.

4. “I'm Not Okay” by My Chemical Romance

This 2004 song is an almost perfect definition of our emo phase! One great thing about music like this is that we felt it could describe our complicated emotions perfectly. I remember listening to this and thinking “Me, too!”

My Chemical Romance aren't together anymore, but they'll always be alive in our black, black hearts.

5. “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” by Green Day

This hit song from 2004 is nostalgic for many people, not just emos, but it deserves a spot on this list for its melancholy lyrics and Billie Joe Armstrong's eyeliner.

6. “Bring Me to Life” by Evanescence

Also known as “Wake Me Up Inside,” most people know this powerful 2003 ballad featuring Linkin Park. Evanescence are known for exceptionally dark lyrics and this is probably one of their top three most successful songs ever.

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7. “The Kill” by Thirty Seconds to Mars

You can tell this song, also known as “Bury Me,” is emo before the music even begins thanks to that hair and those nails. This is another fantastic rock song, released in 2005, that describes love and loss. It's still awesome.

8. “Numb” by Linkin Park

Linkin Park is another nostalgic band that sadly lost their singer, Chester Bennington, in 2017. The song “Numb” from 2003 describes feeling distant from your parents and feeling like you're growing up to be something different to what they expected.

Most teenagers feel this way at some point and I remember feeling like it described my life perfectly.

9. “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” by Panic! At the Disco

“I Write Sins Not Tragedies” is a pretty funny song about a man who finds out that the woman he is about to marry actually likes to play away. This isn't really an emo song, but it's a song that all emo kids remember.

10. “Ohio is For Lovers” by Hawthorne Heights

Hawthorne Heights' debut single from 2004 is about going on tour and leaving their girlfriends behind. It's another gem from the 2000s that we loved to listen to.

11. “Welcome to the Black Parade” by My Chemical Romance

Another My Chemical Romance song that fans loved is “Welcome to the Black Parade,” which has emo written all over it from the lyrics to the video.

12. “This is How You Remind Me” by Nickelback

Nickelback aren't an emo band, but everyone likes this 2001 gem about a breakup.

13. “Scars” by Papa Roach

The video of this 2004 song tells a story about alcoholism which has touched people across the world for years. Loads of kids loved this in the 2000s and still listen to it today.

14. “Tears Don't Fall” by Bullet For My Valentine

This song released in 2005 is a great example of awesome emo/goth/punk rock. It's got a lot of nostalgia for those growing up in this decade.

15. “Going Under” by Evanescence

This is another depressing but awesome rock song by Evanescence, released in 2003. It's all about being in love with someone and how much pain he's caused her. Definitely relatable to teenagers in bad relationships or suffering from heartache.

16. “Nymphetamine” by Cradle of Filth

Though more goth than emo, this is still a deliciously dark song. Released in 2004, the video is just as fascinating as the lyrics, and a nostalgic tune for lovers of goth metal.

17. “Face Down” by Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

This 2006 song is about domestic abuse and is really awesome and catchy. I remember loving it as a teenager. The singer's hair alone qualifies this tune as at least a little emo.

18. “Walk Away” by Funeral For a Friend

I remember all my friends being crazy about Funeral For a Friend when I was around fourteen years old, and I always loved “Walk Away,” released in 2007. It's a sad song about a missing father an moving on after a loss.

19. “My Curse” by Killswitch Engage

This awesome 2006 song is all about being away from the one you love and how much it hurts. People who loved this song might look fondly back on their time playing Guitar Hero.

20. “The Diary of Jane” by Breaking Benjamin

This 2006 tune is another song we rocked to as teenagers and back when the radios played rock, “The Diary of Jane” was played almost non-stop in the late 2000s. It's massively nostalgic and still brilliant.

The time of the emo will never be forgotten! Back then, black nail polish, choppy hair with a fringe over one eye, and a ton of eyeliner was a way of life. Now it's something we can look back on and smile... or maybe cringe.

These songs are great reminders of the 2000s, a time that many consider to be a ton better than the 2010s. Are there any other songs your decade-past emo-self listened to back then? Let me know in the comments.

© 2018 Poppy


Poppy (author) from Enoshima, Japan on April 06, 2018:

Thank you for your comment, Alexis! It's amazing how a song can bring back so many memories.

Alexis on April 06, 2018:

This takes me back to my teenage years. The fact I have a couple of the songs on iTunes and still listen is aside...

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