Each year that I go to the Vans Warped Tour, I feel older, the kids look younger and the line up becomes more diverse and entertaining. I swear that during H2O's set I saw a fetus with purple hair crowd surfing. This year there were professional BMX riders who literally defied the laws of gravity over the heads of fans in the most unsafe way possible. Diverse acts like Dub Pistols, Kool Keith, and The Misfits added dimensions to the predominately punkfest of the past. The bikers, in-line skaters, and skateboarders all wrecked shop on the home made half pipe, and one could even have the opportunity to fail the Pepsi challenge on site. I failed miserably because I donít dare mess with the Coca-Cola Gods. The Warped Tour kicks every other tourís ass and will never die. This one is for the kids man, and although hot, thirsty and sticky, the kids were definitely all right.
The first band that I saw was Rancid (my personal fav and gateway to the world of punk). All of the favorites were played, and some surprises were tossed in from the memorable Letís Go album. "Radio", "Maxwell Murder", "Ruby Soho", "Roots Radicals", "The Ballad Of Jimmy & Johnny", "Side Kick", and even "Nihilism" were heard by the early birds around 1:30 in the afternoon. Rancid ripped it up like they always do ñ period.
The Bouncing Souls were by far the best band of the day. Their intensity, ability to bring the audience to life, and tight ass set made them untouchable. Some keepers from the set were "Hopeless Romantic", "Private Radio", "ECFU", "That Song", "True Believers", "Break Up Song" and more. Before their set I approached the band (as promised) and said in a calm and precise voice, "Hi Iím Jason from Cornerstone and I am Christina White Trashís bitch". Needless to say that band enjoyed the comment and the balls that it took to say that to them (seeing as how we all know itís the other way around, right Trashy?) Pick up How I Spent My Summer Vacation because it really is an amazing record and the bandís live set is awesome.
H20 were the biggest stars of the show. Toby, who started out as a roadie for Sick Of It All, has nurtured his NYC crew into a great song writing, melodic hardcore powerhouse. Highlights included Tobyís Snoop Dogg / L.B.C. T-shirt, "Memory Lane", and
"Family Tree" which during the breakdown led into a surprise cover of Fugaziís "Waiting Room" which morphed right back into the unforgettable lyrics, "Donít Forget Your Roots!" The bandís cover of Madonnaís "Like A Prayer" ignited the crowd and made me remember how Tobyís tattoo of Madonna helped in my decision making for getting my Drew Barrymore tattoo.
Guttermouth lived up to their name when the singer (forget his name) grabbed a girl on stage and asked her how old she was. "18" she replied. "18? Have you ever been fu#@ed before?" "No" the scared and obviously embarrassed girl replied. "Hey we got ourselves a virgin on stage everyone, a virgin".
And that my friends is Guttermouth at their finest.
Kool Keith opened the punkers up to some flame throwing hip-hop. Three emcees and one DJ played some favorites from the new Spankmaster CD.
We were lame and bailed before Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, who seemed to be the most anticipated band of the day. We didnít want to wait for 311, The Misfits, Less Than Jake and someone else that we really didnít care for to get to the all star cover crew. Sorry to the Fat Wreck Chords people. Thanks to Trashy at Epitaph and Sean Boy at Nitro for making all of the press passes legit, as I entered some domains that I know I could have never seen without your help. My pale ass got sun burnt, my hearing is shot today, and I had a great time ñ yeah Warped Tour.
Source: Jason Anfinsen