Warped Tour has become a tradition for me starting from the summer of 1998 (skipping 1999 and 2003) up until now. As much criticism as it gets or the age groups change, I still find it a fun way to spend the day in the hot sun. After all, nothing says summer festival tour like tons of bands and $6 water. Now, as much as I wish I was Dr. Manhattan, I am not able to be at all stages at all times and I can only talk about what bands I did get to see through the day.
The day started off at the “Punk Rock Legends” stage with Total Chaos. This set was nothing but in your face Punk Rock. Singer Rob Chaos screamed out the songs while telling the audience that we need to keep supporting the punk scene. It did feel kind of strange to see the punk bands (minus NOFX) all on one stage rather than scattered on different stages. After Total Chaos got the crowd at the stage riled up, I moved on to the stage sponsored by Skullcandy where the AKAs were playing. Their set was a fun punk/dance party. The whole band was full of energy and did not let up the entire set. The AKAs are a band that have truly embraced the “DIY” way of life for their band and found a great degree of success.
Fishbone was one of my favorite acts of the day. Their set felt like an old school Ska show. It took me back a few years to see many in the crowd skanking and dancing along to the music. The band’s lead singer Angelo Moore even jumped into the crowd to seek audience participation (which he easily found). Since we were close to Long Beach, they did a cover of Sublime’s “Date Rape” in a style only Fishbone could. However their set got cut short with a band playing before them going over on the stage next to them. The crowd was not happy because they were about to play their classic song “Party At Ground Zero.” It was unfortunate for the band The Architects (the next band on the stage next to Fishbone), because they became the target of the frustration of the Punk Rock stage’s crowd. On their side you saw a sea of middle fingers and some debris launched The Architects’ way.
The Adicts were the peak of the night for me and many others at least. Looking in back of me, I couldn’t see the end of the audience. Before the band even went on the audience was riled up. All you could hear were chants of “ADICTS…ADICTS!” When the band took the stage everyone was definitely into it. If you have never been to and Adicts show, you are really missing out. Their blend of Punk Rock and crazy antics have not grown old, even after 30-plus years of being together (and keeping the same lineup all these years). The crowd found themselves of course covered in a mix of glitter, confetti, playing cards, and even beach balls. The Adicts even had a signing at their booth after their set. The Adicts were a good way to cap off the day. However, there was one more band and it was the infamous Millionaires. Not infamous for antics or music, but because there are either really loved or hated. I was able to hear them while in line for The Adicts signing. I noticed that the crowd basically dispersed after The Adicts. The Millionaires only had maybe a quarter to under half of what The Adicts did. To me that really shows the staying power of this legendary Punk band.
I also took time to wander the grounds and check out some new bands. However, this year I did not find much of this lineup to my liking. It seemed like they theory for this year was to bring a diverse lineup with bands ranging from genres of Punk & Metal to Country & Emo. While I do give credit for trying to cater to different groups, it is never easy to pull off. Maybe I’m getting older or just “out of the loop” and in my own world, but it was hard to distinguish the newer bands from one another. Most of what I seemed to hear and see were bands that you would find in your friends request page on Myspace. Through all the years I have gone Warped Tour, it seems to be a festival that changes with the times. However, it is always hard to satisfy every aspect of music and/or fans because people will feel like they are left out.Last 5 posts by Francis Sky
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