When I think of Warped Tour, I first think of hot, sweaty, long days in the Texas sun. But it’s worth it because the day is spent with five or six favorite bands, and all the fans who love them just as much as you.
I headed out to San Antonio for the second date of Warped Tour to catch all your and my favorite bands. Read about my experience below with some of the best bands on tour. You can also read my survival guide if your date is coming up. All photos from Warped Tour can be seen on my Flickr page.
My favorite band of the day was Yellowcard, hands down. They rocked out like no other band out there. Ryan Key, vocalist, immediately jumped off the stage and hopped up onto the barrier to get the crowd going, waving his arms in the air and making faces. Yellowcard gave it their 100% and delivered a solid, high-energy set from the first note to the last. Sean Mackin, violinist, might have been even more pumped than Key, screaming and running and jumping around stage, not stoping to pause even for a minute. And the crowd savored every second of it, singing their faces off to the tunes they so closely worship.
Less Than Jake
I was not familiar with much of Less Than Jakes’ music, but, boy, were they fun. Even if you don’t know them, go and see them if you have the time. Their performance skills combined with genuine fun and artistic energy is larger than almost any other artist there. And who doesn’t love a little brass?
We Are The In Crowd
WATIC has grown a lot in the last few years. They’ve gone from following in the footsteps of The Summer Set and All Time Low, to holding their own on a big stage. Much of their music has that pop-punk-anthem feeling, and you know it when the crowd sings with all their hearts. WATIC was another one of my favorite performances because they spend the whole time running around the stage, giving every part of the crowd some love. Not to mention, vocalist Tay Jardine’s hair flips are something you don’t want to miss.
Echosmith is an up-and-coming indie-rock band from California. The four siblings show their light-hearted and fun-spirited personalities on stage through their music. This was my second time seeing them after SXSW in March, and they’ve only improved as performers. Only 16, Sydney Sierota, vocalist, commands the stage with an elegance beyond her years. On their last song, they released confetti filled balloons, a great show of their character as a band. . These kids are going places.
Warped Tour was my 8th time seeing The Maine, and I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, they get better every time I see them. They had a set later in the day at 7:20, but that didn’t stop all of their devoted fans from rocking their hearts out. After the release of Forever Halloween in 2013, The Maine is more rock than ever and they love to show it on stage, going wild with instrumental intros, outros, and maybe even a few inbetween-ros.
The Summer Set
Speaking of a band that has grown, The Summer Set is bigger and better than ever. They won Macy’s iHeartRadio Rising Star contest last year and since have been on a rocket to stardom. They started off the set with a few oldies and played the current hits too.
Mayday Parade & We The Kings
To me, Mayday Parade and We The Kings was like a throwback to the good ole high school days. Both bands played a mix of everyone’s favorite oldies and their fresh, new material.
I had heard good things about Air Dubai from friends, and it was true. Their sound is a music of twangy pop guitar, solid keyboard chord progression, jazz drums and smooth vocal melodies mixed with laid-back rapping. They are quite underrated, and from the sound of thier new music, they could go places. Their new album Be Calm is set to release on July 1.
Another solid band is Anberlin. I was late to their set, but they were still great. These guys know how to deliver an alt-rock set with all their guts and glory. It was clear they know what they’re doing and they love it.
Crown The Empire
I first saw Crown The Empire at SXSW in 2013. These Dallas-natives definitely know how to get down. They had the crowd jumping non-stop with their high energy. Although I am not usually a fan of metalcore, Crown The Empire does it well. They have a new album The Resistance: Rise of the Runaways set to release on July 22.
For the one song I caught of Real Friends, it was about as pop punk as you can get: yelling, fist throwing, crowd surfing, angsty teenagers. Dan Lambton, vocalist, jumped into the photo pit to stand on the barricade and yell with and smile at the crowd before joining the band back on stage to yelling some more.