Montreal rockers Simple Plan are celebrating quite the anniversary this year. March 19th marked 15 years since the release of their debut album, No Pads, No Helmets… Just Balls. Yup, I can’t believe it either. The guys also kicked off their 15 year anniversary tour the same day in celebration of the huge milestone. With all the excitement going on with this anniversary, I couldn’t help but start to think about how great that album was – and still is – along with all the other SP albums that followed. A long-time fan myself, I thought now would be a great time to take a minute to look back at what are, in my opinion, the top ten Simple Plan songs of all time. So sit back and get ready to take a trip down memory lane with me. Try not to get too nostalgic!
10. THIS SONG SAVED MY LIFE (Get Your Heart On!, 2011)
To me, This Song Saved My Life is one of the most special songs Simple Plan has ever released. While in the writing process, the guys had reached out to fans all over social media and asked them to tell them, in a few short sentences, what the band meant to them, and the responses came pouring in from all over the world. Pierre and Chuck read through all the messages they were getting and took parts of what fans had written, tweaked it a bit, and voila, TSSML was born. I think this was such a cool, intimate way to involve fans in the project. It didn’t stop there though. The band also had some fans come into the studio to record gang vocals for the track with them. Honestly, how much does this band love their fans?! I’m not gonna lie, I definitely shed a tear or two the first time I heard this song. Simple Plan has been my favourite band since I was 9 years old, so I definitely felt a personal connection to this song, and for that reason I had to include it in this list of course.
9. LOSER OF THE YEAR (Get Your Heart On!, 2011)
This track is definitely my favourite off of the band’s 4th album, Get Your Heart On!. It’s fun and playful, and it’s just one of those songs you wanna blast as loud as you can. In the song Pierre sings about how cool he is and all the nice things he has, but then goes on to say that it all means nothing if he can’t get the girl (awww!) There’s just something about this one that makes me wanna jump around while screaming the lyrics at the top of my lungs.
8. THE REST OF US (Get Your Heart On – The Second Coming!, 2013)
If you know about Simple Plan, you probably know that back in the early days, they were always kinda looked at as the underdogs in the pop punk scene. They are definitely no strangers to embracing this though, and that’s exactly what they do in The Rest Of Us. They poke fun at themselves in this one big time, Pierre even taking shots at himself about his singing. I think a lot of people really relate to Simple Plan in that way, where they also feel like underdogs, or don’t feel good enough. This song is definitely an anthem for SP and their fans, and it’s a major banger too.
7. PERFECT (No Pads, No Helmets… Just Balls, 2002)
Perfect is probably one of SP’s most emotional songs, and I know a lot of people relate to this one, myself included. There has never been a time that I’ve seen SP live and didn’t cry while they played this, it sends chills down my spine every time. For the first half of the song it’s usually just Pierre and an acoustic guitar on stage, and you’re sitting in the middle of this huge arena with 10 000 people singing this song back to him. It’s always such a special moment in their show and you can truly feel the emotion behind every person in that arena.
6. SAVE YOU (Simple Plan, 2008)
Carrying on with the emotional tracks, Save You comes in at #6 for me. This is a song that is definitely hard for me to listen to. The story behind it is a personal one for Pierre, as he wrote it about his brother who was battling cancer at the time. But this song is easy to relate to, for anyone really. It’s a beautiful song about watching someone you love go through something and there being nothing you can do to help them. My dad was diagnosed with cancer about a year and a half after this album came out, so it’s probably pretty easy for you to guess why I hold this one so close to my heart. The guys released a super touching and emotional video to go along with the single.
5. FAREWELL (Taking One For The Team, 2016)
Ah, Farewell. I. Freaking. Love. This. Song. Again, probably mostly for personal reasons. This album came out 3 weeks after my boyfriend dumped me last year (wah wah) and this song stood out to me right away. It was everything I was feeling in that moment and everything I needed to hear. Simple Plan has such a way of writing songs that are 100% relatable, and I will always love them for that. It’s now a year later and I’m way over that boy, but I still love this song just as much as the first time I heard it.
4. I’M JUST A KID (No Pads, No Helmets… Just Balls, 2002)
This is SUCH a nostalgic song for me. This was the very first song I ever heard from Simple Plan, and I still remember exactly where I was when I heard it. I was about 8 years old, sitting in my best friend’s bedroom. We had stolen one of her older brother’s burnt mix CDs and I’m Just a Kid happened to be on it, and I never looked back after that day. This song really was my introduction into pop punk music and I think about that memory every time I hear it. This is such a staple SP song in my opinion, and I don’t think there’s anyone in the world who grew up in that era who doesn’t know this song. It’s definitely a fan favourite at shows too.
3. PROMISE (Still Not Getting Any…, 2004)
Ok. SNGA is my absolute favourite album from these guys, and Promise has always been my number one off of this one. I can’t really even tell you what it is about this song that I love so much, but damn. I feel like this is such an underrated song, and it never really got enough attention. I especially love the breakdown in the bridge. Just something about the way Pierre sings “take my hand”… ugh. Alright I’m done fangirling. But seriously, this song definitely deserves to be on this list, and definitely deserves some attention.
2. HOLDING ON (Simple Plan, 2008)
This is another song that was super underrated in my opinion. In fact, this entire album was. I remember when this album came out people just didn’t seem to pick up on it. The guys tried something a little different with this one, and personally I loved it. I think this album was full of great tracks, Holding On being my favourite. The musicianship on this song blows me away. It’s also kinda cool because drummer Chuck actually has some singing (or, er, speaking..?) parts as he backs up Pierre’s main vocals with some one-liners. I love the experimenting they did with this one, and it definitely deserves its #2 spot on this list.
1. I’D DO ANYTHING (No Pads, No Helmets… Just Balls, 2002)
Alright, I feel like it might be a bit of a cliche to have I’d Do Anything as my number one, but honestly, it’s deserving of the title. This song just screams nostalgia to me, and I’m sure to all of you too. As soon as I hear the first lick of the guitar my blood starts pumping and I come ALIVE. You wanna talk about pop punk classics? This song is the KING of those. From the infectious guitar riffs to the top line of the chorus where you can always hear the crowd scream the words “I’d do anything” in ridiculously powerful unison, this song is one of the best live songs played at SP shows. I’m so in love with the music behind the lyrics of this one that I honestly love listening to just the instrumental version just as much as the actual version. Maybe I’m crazy. I don’t know. IT’S JUST THAT GOOD. The rest of this list was pretty hard to narrow down honestly, but there was not a doubt in my mind that this song was at the top of it all.