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Blink 182 personified the genre of sophomoric punk rock when they broke onto the scene in 1997 with their third album, Dude Ranch. Propelled by the success of the high-school anthem “Dammit,” the band became known on a large scale throughout the United States. The song is about growing up and how it’s not always easy for teens to come to grips with situation and events at certain points in their lives. The song is filled with the kind of adolescent angst that plagues most teens.
The success of “Dammit” and Dude Ranch made Blink 182 tickets a hot item among teenagers across America. They could identify with the teen-themed sentiments that the Blink boys were throwing their way. Two years later, in 1999, the band released their first true major-selling effort, Enema of the State.
The group further played into their sophomoric image by putting a pornographic actress on the cover on the album. The group’s first single off the record, “What’s My Age Again,” followed suit with “Dammit.” With a juvenile theme and a video to match, the group was thrust into another echelon of popularity. As was the case with “Dammit,” bassist Mark Hoppus provided the vocals on the track.
DeLonge’s voice soon became the trademark of the band, with fans identifying his vocal stylings with the group more than anything else. DeLonge’s vocals were again featured on the group’s next single, “Adam’s Song.” The subject matter of the track was a departure from the fun-loving style that had become so closely associated with the band, focusing on suicide.
Their sound had not necessarily evolved, but the way their fans identify them has. The band is now synonymous with DeLonge’s voice, which countless bands have emulated. Their subject matter has not changed as much as early tracks like “Adam’s Song” might have indicated they, but they’re still a fun-loving group that puts on a heck of a show.
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