It’s that time of the year when the sun shines, flowers start blooming, and Warped Tour comes to town. This year Warped Tour kicked off in Houston, so it was our duty to set the bar for the rest of the tour, and we we’re successful.
This is the first time Warped tour put up No moshing signs, and as expected, the rules were broken on several occasions.
The festival started off strong with A Lot Like Birds taking the Hard Rock Kevin Stage. A lot Like Birds are a five piece post-hardcore from Sacramento. I first saw the band live at South by So What, so I had an idea of what to expect from them. They did not disappoint, with their stage antics including jumping into the crowd, throwing their guitars so the crowd can play it, and guitarist Michael Franzino doing the worm on stage. While doing all of this, they maintained a spot on performance that was memorable to say the least.
Straight after, I headed to check out Stray from the Path on the Monster Stage. If your a fan of Rage Against the Machine or any old school Deftones, you would love these guys. They were one of the first bands to play the Monster stage, so it was their job to pump up the crowd, which they did a pretty good job with it. They manage to get a pretty good pit going, especially when they performed their hit “Radio” off their recently release, “Anonymous”.
Straight after Stray’s performance, punk legends Every Time I Die took the stage and absolutely annihilated it. These guys are no strangers to Warped Tour, being their sixth time on the festival lineup. They kicked things off with their single “Thirst”, which is off their upcoming album “From Parts Unknown”, that’ll be out July 1st. Instantly the crowd was hyped up and were going absolutely nuts. They also played some of their classic hits, such as “The New Black”, which some of you might remember playing on Guitar Hero. They wrapped things up with “No Son of Mine” and guitarist Andy Williams got into the crowd and finished the song with everyone climbing on top of him and trying to grab hold of his guitar.
In between Stray From the Path and Every Time I Die’s sets, I managed to run to the main stage and caught For Today’s first couple of songs and took some photos.
A couple of hours later, we returned to the Monster Stage to catch the Color Morale. These heavy hitters have been taking the scene by storm with their album “Know Hope”, and have recently signed to Fearless Records and are expected to put out a new album later in the year. They attracted one of the biggest crowds the Monster stage had seen all day. I only caught the last couple of songs they played but definitely proved that they can hang.
One of the Texas bred bands I was excited to see was Close Your Eyes. Before they headed out on Warped, they stopped by the Coog Radio studio to hang out on Kill the Music (you can listen to it here). These guys were filming a new music video, so they brought there A game. Vocalist Sam Ryder was hoping all over the place, and eventually found himself in the middle of the crowd singing. The crowd was singing a long to their hits, such as “Song For the Broken” and “Valleys” as well as some of the newer songs, like “Kings of John Payne”.
The only band on the Main stage I managed to see was the Story So Far. This is their second year in a row on Warped, so it was natural that they get promoted to the Main Stage. As I was taking pictures behind the barrier, I could hear the whole entire crowd singing a long to every song. One thing that caught my eye during their set was the sign language translator at the side of the stage. They translated all of their lyrics while jamming out to the song.
By far, the best performance of the day was Beartooth. Beartooth is a hardcore band from Ohio that features ex-Attack Attack! vocalist Caleb Shomo. They just released there first full-length LP “Disgusting” last week, so they we’re ready to performs tons of new music. Throughout the show, they maintained such high energy that was projected on the crowd. The highlight of the set was when they performed the first single they ever released “I Have A Problem”, when guitarist got into the crowd and played the song as they were being crowd surfed.
The best way to wrap up Warped Tour 2014 was with Volumes. These guys are releasing their new cd “No Sleep” on July 15th, and they decided to perform some new songs off of it. One of the songs featured on the album was the song “Vahle”, which is the first song that features clean singing from vocalist Michael Barr. When performing the song, he was actually able to do a decent job at pulling it off, especially for his first time. Overall, their set was awesome, and had the crowd moving the whole entire time.
By Raj Radia