Love Letter To A Record: TOWNS On Blink 182’s Self-Titled Record

Many of us can link a certain album to pivotal moments in our lives. Whether it’s the first record you bought with your own money, the chord you first learnt to play on guitar, the song that soundtracked your first kiss, the album that got you those awkward and painful pubescent years or the one that set off light bulbs in your brain and inspired you to take a big leap of faith into the unknown – music is often the catalyst for change in our lives and can even help shape who we become.

In this series, Music Feeds asks artists to reflect on their relationship with music and share with us stories about the effect music has had on their lives.

Aston Valladares, TOWNS – Blink 182, Blink 182(2003)

Dear Blink 182’s Self Titled Record

I remember it took me quite some time to hear you in full, mainly because I was downloading music via LimeWire and what I thought was the song ‘Stockholm Syndrome’ ended up being a documentary about the human rights movements of the 1970s. My first experience with you was hearing the opening drum beat to ‘Feeling This’ and being filled with immediate excitement and anticipation of where the song was going. Tom’s guitar came in and Mark yelled “Feeling This” and I immediately FELT IT.

Songs like ‘Obvious’ and ‘Easy Target’ took me down a path of discovering how cool it was to be badass and snap skateboards and that yelling out the lyrics in your bedroom only made the experience better.

I picked up a bass and immediately started figuring out how to play ‘Always’ because this was something different again, on the same record. It gave little 12-year-old me the desire to have some imaginary girlfriend that I’d have to beg for love from and that was a pretty heavy feeling as a pre-pubescent young adult.

When I learnt ‘Down’ and showed my friends I could play the opening octave chord. They weren’t impressed and neither was I. It was one chord repeated over and over but when Blink did it, it was the most punk rock thing in the world. How could one 3-piece band make one chord sound like 10,000 telephone lines crashing at once? It was sick.

It was a cool feeling being that young and deciding that your first tattoo would be the Blink 182 smiley face because it was something you knew ingrained that next step of your musical journey. You didn’t just like pop-punk, you liked all music now because diversity was handed to you on a white, pink and blue platter with a smiley face on top.

I remember sitting there reminding myself over and over that this was the same band that wrote ‘All the Small Things’ and being mind blown that this was the same 3 guys. Every day I remember the risks taken musically on that record as a constant remember to think ‘F@$K IT, why not!?’.


Aston – the guy who didn’t know who The Cure was until he heard ‘All of This’

TOWNS’ new single ‘Stardust’ is out this Friday, April 3rd.

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