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Staind is a classic American rock band that was formed in the 90s’. They are one of the creators of the 2000s’ post-grunge sound that characterizes rock of that era.
Staind mixes hard rock and alternative metal and tops it off with a softened version of grunge. They cover many serious topics in their music, such as depression, love and love lost, addiction, death, etc.
I would say that Staind has influences from some of the greats such as Led Zepplin, Pearl Jam, and Nirvana. However, the sound of Staind’s music has come to define an era of music and is now an inspiration to other artists.
If you’re looking to get into post-grunge and love the sound of alt-rock, it is time to take a deep dive into Staind’s music. Here are the 10 best Staind songs, and why you should be listening to them.
1. It’s Been Awhile
“It’s Been Awhile” is the most popular Staind song. It is a classic, with a driving grunge-y electric guitar that picks up in the chorus and remains as a simplistic riff throughout the verses.
The lyrics of “It’s Been Awhile” discuss a man repeating a self-destructive cycle after losing the woman who made him feel good to be alive. This is one of the best Staind songs because it defines a generation and era of music.
The song was released in 2001 as a part of their Break the Cycle album. The song was so popular when it was first released that it singlehandedly put Staind on the map as the rock band of a generation.
The track of “Outside” highlights two riffs from an acoustic and electric guitar. The tempo is slower than “It’s Been Awhile,” although the chorus is defined by the same overpowering electric guitar that characterizes Staind’s sound.
I am obsessed with how Staind structures its songs, placing a hard emphasis on the chorus even in their slower tracks. “Outside” also crescendos, becoming an all-out grunge fit toward the end.
3. So Far Away
“So Far Away” was released on Staind’s 14 Shades of Grey album in 2003. Their sound has notably evolved, though they keep the same general quiet verse to loud chorus structure.
To me, “So Far Away” mimics a mix between 2000s’ hard rock from bands like Three Days Grace, and a more even-keeled grunge sound like Pearl Jam. Some say the message is akin to TOOL’s song “Parabola” as well.
“So Far Away” has been interpreted as a response to getting clean from drug addiction, and/or the fear of going back to the struggles of the past and life falling apart.
4. Something to Remind You
“Something to Remind You” is from Staind’s last album, which was self-titled and released in 2012. It is stripped, featuring Lewis’s voice and a simple electric guitar riff.
This is a depressing track, seemingly about the death of a friend or loved one. Lewis fittingly dedicated this song to Chester Bennington in 2017 after his tragic suicide.
If you’re looking to bask in Lewis’s voice and enjoy some simple artistry, “Something to Remind You” is a great and extremely emotional choice. This stripped track is a beautiful ballad from a complex band.
5. For You
“For You” is a more traditional grunge track, maintaining loud electric guitars and crashing drum beats throughout. Lewis uses his whole vocal range in this crazy track.
I love that you can really feel the anger in “For You,” which is the perfect song to let off some steam. The track talks from a child’s perspective who is begging his parents for help but is being overlooked.
“For You” takes on the classic hard rock sound that really defined 2000s’ rock, which is why it is one of the best Staind songs. This is a must-add to your favorite hard rock playlist.
6. Everything Changes
“Everything Changes” starts with an acoustic guitar melody and is like a ballad despite the louder chorus. Despite how rough Lewis sounds sometimes, his voice works perfectly.
Some people interpret “Everything Changes” as a song about losing a lover, while others say it is about mending a broken relationship.
“Everything Changes” is one of the best Staind songs because everyone takes their own interpretation and emotional connection from it.
“Mudshovel” adheres to Staind’s post-grunge sound, mixing in a brooding electric guitar and warped melody with the normal drum beats and minor notes that characterize their music. Lewis mimics a hard rock sound during his rendition of the chorus.
This track was released on Staind’s Dysfunction album in 1999. “Mudshovel” is classic Staind and has a much harder sound than other tracks, even adding a screamo-like growl toward the end of the song.
If you are looking for a hard rock song that is a bit quieter than others in the genre, “Mudshovel” is the perfect choice.
8. Right Here
“Right Here” seems like it was influenced by a mix between 80s’ rock and 90s’ grunge, featuring complex guitar picking and a crashing chorus.
The melodic and lyrical complexity of “Right Here” makes it one of the best Staind songs. The song talks about loving someone no matter what and waiting for them in every situation even if it hurts.
“Right Here” is the third most popular Staind song, which is no surprise after listening to Lewis’s punchy and emotional voice in this track.
“Epiphany” is yet another song off Staind’s 2001 album Break the Cycle. It is a bit untraditional for Staind, employing a marching drum beat and simple acoustic guitar.
Lewis has explained that “Epiphany” is about dealing with ADD. He never tried to control the disorder and always let it manifest.
I like the interesting theme of “Epiphany,” as it discusses an issue that many people are left to deal with without help.
10. Zoe Jane
“Zoe Jane” is another track on this list with a unique subject matter, as Lewis wrote this song about his daughter. Lewis discusses how it feels to miss important moments of his daughter’s life as he tours and the difficulty of constantly being on the road.
The track has a slow tempo and a characteristic crashing guitar and drum beat. It goes through several phases, such as a building crescendo that falls into a stripped track that highlights Lewis’s voice.
The song was released on Staind’s 14 Shades of Grey album and is a fan favorite.
Alex is a man of many talents. He’s been playing music since he was young, and has been the main content writer at Tone Start for the past few years. Alex loves to play around with different styles of music and enjoys listening to anything from country to classical.