Seven years ago, I exclusively listened to pop punk bands such as Boys Like Girls and We The Kings. I even had a paid membership for All Time Low’s official fan club.

Now, it feels odd to call myself a fan of bands with a borderline radio-friendly sound and predominately female fanbase. When asked which bands I listen to, I reply with names like Senses Fail and Silverstein. Yet, I cite former band Yellowcard, as my favorite of all time. While these three groups are arguably within the same music scene, they are also very different. 

In recent months, I have been hooked on Can’t Swim, September Stories, and Daisyhead. I believe these bands fall under at least two genres, but ultimately labeled as rock. Can’t Swim has unique vocals and a handful of catchy songs, but dismisses the “happiness” vibe you usually feel with pop punk. Then, there’s September Stories who has tracks with catchy choruses but the emo genre characteristic of spoken word. Meanwhile, Daisyhead is so far off from what I usually listen to, I would simply call them rock or alternative.

When comparing clean and unclean vocals, I know that screaming can enhance a song if delivered in the right way. The heaviest band I find myself listening to is Alesana, who produces a handful of songs that incorporate death growls. On the contrary, I have never listened to other metalcore bands such as Crown The Empire, We Came As Romans, and Bless The Fall.

I constantly find bands that make me think to myself, “If I had discovered this band five years ago, I would have loved them.” Perhaps our taste in music depends on our discoveries that happen at the “right place, right time.” My taste clearly evolved, but now I ask, where do we draw the line between pop punk and post hardcore?