Top Ten Worst Post Grunge Songs

Also known in recent times as “butt rock”, post grunge makes up a variety of bands that followed the death of the grunge movement in the mid 90’s. Championed by Creed’s Scott Stapp and Nickelback’s Chad Kroeger, the genre thrived in the mid to late 90’s and pretty much all of the 2000s before finally fading into irrelevancy with the rise of the indie movement on alternative rock radio; you’ll be more likely to hear Capital Cities and Imagine Dragons on the radio instead of new material from Breaking Benjamin and Nickelback. Now that this very dark part of rock music history is over, lets take a look at the worst of the worst songs that emerged in that period.

10. Seven Mary Three – Cumbersome

Okay, the song itself probably isn’t terrible, and they’re probably much nicer guys than, say, Wes Scantlin and Fred Durst, but the band’s 1994 debut single sounds like R.E.M. clashed with Pearl Jam with standard 90’s lyrics about being angry at the world. Though Bush and Collective Soul are usually considered the first post grunge bands, Seven Mary Three idles by pretty closely. So, while they’re not terrible, they were the fart in the wind that started an entire genre of giant farts (specifically, Chad Kroeger’s farts) in an enclosed room.

9. Three Days Grace – Riot

While not insultingly bad like some of the latter bands on this list (Nickelback), Three Days Grace tried at once to be something “heavy” while also trying to have pop appeal, and the result is something jarring, like someone threw a wet towel on the band’s speakers. To their credit, they got kind of creative on their 2012 album Transit of Venus.

Then, suddenly, frontman Adam Gontier quit the band in January 2013, around the same time Stone Temple Pilots frontman Scott Weiland was fired from his band. Though Gontier cites health concerns, one might think he assumed he was worthy enough to replace Weiland and made a hasty decision to quit his band.

8. Scott Stapp – Slow Suicide

Former Creed frontman Scott Stapp takes all of the stereotypes of his old band and puts them on maximum overdrive in what is quite possibly the most overdramatic music video ever conceived. Hospital environment? Check. Biblical references? Check. Slow-mo shots of Stapp singing? Check. Its only missing a guest appearance from Chad Kroeger.


7. Shinedown – Bully

Shinedown’s 2012 single, “Bully”, made waves for its anti-bullying stance. Okay, good intention here, but… come on. The lyrics just don’t appeal to adult fans who might enjoy Shinedown, and any middle schooler who is getting bullied will probably get his ass kicked even harder if he sang this song to his tormentors. The song was so bad that it sparked a thread on the popular forum on IGN, The Vestibule, debating whether or not Shinedown was demoted to Nickelback status. 

6. Breaking Benjamin – Diary of Jane

Kind of in a similar boat as Three Days Grace, Breaking Benjamin try to sound heavy and poppy at the same time and going in neither direction. Its not hard enough to rock out to, and its not poppy enough to… pop out to. Combine that with overdramatic lyrics that sound like they were written by a creepy obsessive teenager going through hormonal imbalances, “Diary of Jane” makes number six on the list.

5. Trapt – Headstrong

This was Trapt’s one popular song, released in 2003. Watch your back. He’ll take you on. He’ll take on… anyone. Watch yourself. You know why? FUUUCCCKKK, BECAUSE HE’S HEADSTRONG.

[insert Chad Kroeger/Nickelback joke here]

4. Puddle of Mudd – Control

Wes Scantlin, whose vocal style is akin to Scott Stapp trying to do a Kurt Cobain impersonation, likes the way you smack his ass. He also apparently likes lip synching nowadays, when he’s not in jail for one reason or another. At least he doesn’t sound much like Chad Kroeger.

3. Nickelback – S.E.X. 

Nickelback frontman Chad Kroeger’s continues to show his brilliant skills as a lyricist with lines like “I’m loving what you wanna wear, I wonder what’s up under there? Wonder if I’ll ever have it under my tongue?”and “No is a dirty word”. In the past, Chad Kroeger has referred to himself as a “walking penis” and bragged about how he put his own penis on his mouth. Keep in mind this a guy who looks like Nicolas Cage crossed with Fabio.

2. Theory of a Deadman – Bad Girlfriend

The braindead child of STP’s “Dead and Bloated” and The Cult’s “Fire Woman”, “Bad Girlfriend” is like an 80’s cock rock song without any subtlety whatsoever. It is essentially frontman Tyler Connolly impersonating Chad Kroeger and grunting about how hot his girlfriend is and that everyone should be jealous. He also makes obligatory dudebro references to partying, taking shots, being stoned, and spanking asses . You know when a song starts off with “My girlfriend’s a dick magnet”, you’re in for a douchey ride.

1. My Darkest Days – Porn Star Dancing

A band discovered and signed by Chad Kroeger, My Darkest Days’ first single, “Porn Star Dancing”, pretty much embodied every single stereotype about the genre, from its degrading lyrics about women, grunting machismo, a music video filled with strippers, and a guest appearance from… Chad Kroeger. The song was arguably the last popular post-grunge era song before Mumford & Sons and Imagine Dragons took over mainstream rock radio for some reason.

Its also worth noting that the first single from the band’s second album, “Casual Sex” (how edgy guys), featured a music video filled with so much unnecessary female nudity that frontman Matt Walst’s girlfriend left him. Walst is now busy singing with Three Days Grace since former frontman Adam Gontier suddenly quit the band.

Special thanks to Austin Eddington, “Birdman” Dan Segal, and Anthony Carioscia for their assistance in compiling this list. 


  • http://www.cuntcertfy.nut Whip

    Cumbersome is not a bad song and it’s totally not in the same group/genre as the rest of these songs. Also, the Puddle Of Mudd song isn’t bad. That band got a bad rap because the guy ever so slightly resembled Kurt Cobain and his voice did the same.
    The rest of the songs, I don’t know what butt-rock is, but (butt) yeah they suck hard… Nickelback started this weird fad of singing songs about strippers, porn stars, and “white stains” and unfortunately several other bands followed their lead. Doesn’t matter what else those bands did because if you’re going to borrow a page from the book of Nickelback it’s just time to call it a day.

    • Corndog

      You know what? I’m just going to come right out and say it. POM….i like the album Come Clean. i do. It’s really not that bad at all. Some pretty decent tracks on there. Some folks are just too quick to jump on the ‘look how cool i am because i am a hater of what the internet tells me to hate’ bandwagon to even think for themselves and give it a chance.
      Honestly – we have a shop here in the UK called Poundland. I’m sure folks reading this can figure out why. I saw Come Clean in there, figured it was worth a punt and when i listened to it i was pleasantly surprised at how much i actually liked it. Definitely worth the quid it cost me. There’s nothing wrong with Control. It is a decent song.
      Before anyone tries to tear me apart for liking this album, i have long since stopped caring about the opinions of others on such matters. If you like it, then grand. if not, then my liking it will not harm you in any way so please keep the personal attacks to yourself:)

      • http://www.cuntcertfy.nut Whip

        Ok seriously now, and to be true to myself, in light of Corndog’s comment– I actually did enjoy listening to Nickelback’s first album back when I heard it back in 2000 or 2001 (took it from my sister lol). And I’m going to dig the fire pit even deeper now by saying, I enjoyed it because it reminded me of Bush– there.. I said it. Lol. Also, one time a Jimmy Eat World disc touched my CD player, which sucked it in, and started playing it. And I let it.

        I’m going to take a stand with you Corndog– against Magic Mike, against King Buzzo, and against anyone else that shames or flames anyone else for musical preference on the grounds that the band isn’t cool enough. I know it sounds like some shitty progressive liberal douchebaggery, but this article alone kind of pisses me off.

        Also, if Grunge never existed how can there be Post-Grunge? If Grunge DID exist then it was only as a term coined by Mark Arm, describing Mudhoney’s sound, which hasn’t changed to this very day, leaving Grunge very much intact, alive & well, leaving Post-Grunge yet to have existed.

        Lastly– while I won’t be shamed into NOT liking bands like Breaking Benjamin, Trapt (which is more or less a rip-off of Incubus or the “Post-Incubus” band, Hoobastank), anything fronted by Scott Stapp or Chad Kroeger, or Three Days Grace– I still think they all suck, but only because I say so.

        • Corndog

          Thanks for the Solidarity man:) People should be able to listen to whatever the hell they want without fear of ridicule. Lets get it all out…you know what else? I really fucking liked what Limp Biscuit did with the Mission Impossible riff. That was a catchy wee tune!
          You mentioned Incubus at the end there. I always kinda liked them too, although they were one of those bands who could be sort of hit and miss. When they managed to hit though, they could be pretty damn good. I’m talking about songs like ‘A Certain Shade Of Green’ or ‘Favourtie Things’. Great tracks!

          • Batterycock


  • Wam Meesly

    I only recognize the Puddle of Mudd song, I suppose I am fortunate to have missed or mentally blocked most of this garbage.

  • Batterycock

    That was a great article and even better comment section. Today has reached the pinnacle of awesomeness, I’ll go home now.

  • Shane99

    These are some pretty terrible songs.

  • josephine blackheart

    Cumbersome…..everytime I hear I start singing along. Puddle Of Mudd….Blurry was a good song, but I did see some video where he literally looked like Kurt in the Teen Spirit video and then I heard more and was done. The rest of the songs on here were really terrible, like I feel embarrassed for them. Nickelbag and Creed are the worst of the worst. Their music should be torture music at Guantanamo Bay rather than Skinny Puppy. Silverchair would be considered post-grunge, their song Tommorow sounds like Pearl Jam’s Alive. Would Gravity Kills be considered Post-Industrial? Is Insane Clown Posse Post Hip-hop? Is Spice Girls Post Riot-grrrl?

  • CraigPW1984

    I disagree with some of the list. I always enjoyed Cumbersome. I also like Three Days Grace, Breaking Benjamin, and Trapt. I enjoy OLD Shinedown and I absolutely agree “Bully” is terrible along with the majority of the album that was on. Anything from Nickelback since All the Right Reasons is terrible.

  • CraigPW1984

    And I will say I’d rather hear most of these bands on the radio than poppy/indie stuff from Imagine Dragons or Capital Cities.

    • Waldo

      I agree mate, I’d be happy to hear this music on the radio any day of the week over the crap they usually play – at least it’s all rock music, commercial or not.

  • nevernamed

    BINGO, well said Brett

    • Doug McCausland

      Actually Doug wrote this article.

  • Eddie Yarler

    I can post about the many inaccurate statements, and biasedness this article but I know it will go through one ear and out the other. So to commenters saying “I’m just going to come right out and say it I liked POM first album” or “I actually did enjoy listening to Nickelback a long time ago” you need to get a set of balls. You like a band that isn’t popular amongst music snobs so what? Its not like you killed someone. Its just rock music. IF YOU LIKE SOMETHING THAN ENJOY IT. When you “like” specific bands just so people will respect you, you come off as a giant fucking asshole. I can’t stand Eminem but I don’t go to his videos telling other people how awful I think he is. He’s worked his ass off and I have no right to tell someone what they can and can’t enjoy, neither do you, or this Doug shithead. The funny thing is ten years ago Stone Temple Pilots, Smashing Pumpkins, Bush, and Days of the New would have made this list and all of those bands are (rightly) very appreciated by many people and this website today. Rock music was meant to bring us together. There should be no rule when it comes to the rock genre, unless they are despicable humans like Ian Watkins, preach hatred, or just want to hurt others. And you know something? I may not the biggest fan of most of these bands but they FOUND success, they are making money doing what they love, and they have fans all over the world. Mhmm “talentless”. The hate for Scott Stapp and Creed is crap too. If you took the time to stop talking shit and listened to any Creed album you will see they are much closer in lyrics, style, and talent to the four bands I mentioned earlier.

    • Corndog

      Wow….way to make the EXACT same point i was making in my 2 posts. Clearly the light hearted tongue in cheek aspect of my posts were totally lost on you, but thanks for clearing it up for the rest of us. Jeez….

  • Amy-lynn

    As much as I agree almost 100% with these picks.. being that I really can’t stand any of the above listed songs or bands really.. I think there are a few others that could make the top of the list! I have to disagree most with Cumbersome, only because I think there are far worse songs than that one in particular. It was a very annoying overplayed song but there are worse!

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  • Mickster

    Umm, I guess some songs on this list do deserve to be here… but in my opinion I think Three Days Grace and Breaking Benjamin are actually really good bands, and yea, its a shame that Diary of Jane is the famous BB song, in my opinion BB has a lot better songs. But, Riot?? Its an amazing song I don’t see anything wrong with it, of course, everyone has their own opinion and taste in music.