Warped Tour day two had Live Nation more on their toes with an overhaul of security in the parking lots and crossing guards that implemented crosswalks at the streetlights instead of the middle of the street as fans unloaded in waves out of the parking lot and from their drop off rides.
Waving a black flag that had a design of S D C around a skull and drum sticks came America’s Got Talent 2018 contestants Street Drum Corps. Street Drum Corps was formed in 2004 by Bobby & Adam Alt as well as Frank Zummo. Since their conception, they have released four albums (self-titled, We Are Machines, Big Noise, and Children of the Drum) and have had success on the tour circuit with their first Warped Tour date dating back to 2006. As the audience trickled their way down to the barricade the Street Drum Corps drew in quite the crowd by the third song with their abnormal entertainment of a drums only performance with the help of various drums, cans, and snares. The artists had no issues sharing the spotlight with the crowd as Bobby took various drums out to the audience as they shared turns pounding on them to the beat of the songs. A handful of tracks the group played were Victory! Inception, Tailpipe Jam, Savage, Fire, and Destroy Them With Drums.
“Thank you for being here early, we are Circa Survive,” said lead vocalist Anthony Green as he stepped into the center of the main stage. Undoubtedly one of the most popular bands on Sunday afternoon was Circa Survive. From the oversized beach balls to the classic throwbacks, to Green begging fans to get close the set was a recipe for success.
Before the first minute of the set passed Green found himself on the barricade of the main stage helping crowd surfers over the edge to security while singing the words to Act Appalled before eventually throwing himself onto the crowd. “Holy shit, you’re so far away. Come, come” Green said once he made it back to the stage before leading into Rites of Investiture. “Open it up. Open that shit wide. Let’s fuck some shit up now” Green told the audience before Circa Survive played Children of the Desert. With most of Circa Survives set coming from their 2005 album Juturna, as well as taking some songs from On Letting Go and The Amulet as well there didn’t appear to be a quiet voice in the audience for at least the first 15 rows. Everyone who didn’t know the words found themselves in the center of the circle pit moshing with lifetime fans showing them how Circa Survive has a good time.
Kicking off their set with a 2011 classic Thrice brought Yellow Belly to the main stage audience for a try. After receiving a warm response to their opening song founder, lead vocalist, and guitarist Dustin Kensrue introduced themselves shortly after by saying “Warped Tour we’re Thrice thanks for coming out.” The Artist in the Ambulance was up next which caught my ear lyrically, vocally, and instrumentally. The third song Thrice played was Silhouette which received a pretty loud pop from the crowd once the drums kicked in. Although the band played their hearts out for an additional six songs they returned later that evening to participate in the NOFX jam (playing Linoleum) to make up for NOFX being late which was amazing to see live (more on that in the NOFX portion of this article).
Twiztid was one of the acts I was most excited to photograph on Sunday since it would be another act that I haven’t seen before but knew ahead of time they had great personalities and an even better look for their stage presence. Twiztid started off their set with drummer Drayven Davidson coming out to the stage first and banging the drums to Phlegm in the Windpipe as Monoxide danced his way out alongside his partner Jamie Madrox.
After the song came to a close Monoxide checked the audience pulse by asking how everyone was feeling. With little to no discussion Monoxide split the crowd in half between him and Madrox. Monoxide had his side of the crowd chant “Party over here fuck you over there” meanwhile Madrox was very confused looking at his side of the audience and saying “what?” During the 5th time of being yelled at Madrox asked his side if they had something to respond with which received various outbursts from his side. After checking to make sure his side of the crowd was ready Madrox had his side chant “fuck everybody on their side” to which Monoxide asked, “Goddammit why can’t we all just get along?” After Monoxide said “I think our side was better” to which Madrox said “delusion is a motherfucker” & “cocaine is a hell of a drug” which had the crowd laughing.
Monoxide asked the crowd if they wanted to hear something new and the crowd let out a loud yell. With that Monoxide asked the crowd to jump up and down and Madrox asked: “me too?” With a sound of concern. Soon after Twiztid played their new song Something New for the Mountain View audience. They followed up their new song with Kill Somebody from their 2017 album The Continuous Evilution of Life’s ?’s. At this point things became very interesting on stage as Michael Myers and Jason Vorhees appeared on stage with axes in their hands. During Kill Somebody, they fought each other and glared at the audience from their respective sides of the stage. After Kill Somebody, I left the pit and went on to the stage to see what kind of trouble the bands were getting themselves into..
“We are Atreyu” screamed lead vocalist Alex Varkatzas rocking pink dyed hair. Varkatzas immediately followed up with “I wanna hear you sing” as guitarist Dan Jacobs began singing the intro for The Time Is Now. Atreyu offers its audience a different band dynamic from the normal as Brandon Saller pulls double duty contributing to songs vocally while playing drums. As Jacobs played the well-known notes for Right Side of the Bed the audience yelled out in excitement and began headbanging. Bassist Marc McKnight joined Jacobs in the center of the stage as they both played and raised their instruments high in the sky before Varkatzas led in with a loud “Come on!” As the crowd began to settle down after the song Atreyu raised the excitement once again. “I want to see your fists in the air. Every one of you” said Varkatzas. As Saller led into Becoming the Bull the crowd began singing along despite the numerous crowd surfers approaching overhead. Guitarist Travis Miguel stuck out during the set as he ran from one side of the stage to the other playing alongside his bandmates and hyping up the crowd. Atreyu took a majority of their set from their classic album Lead Sails Paper Anchor while the remainder of the set came from In Our Wake, The Curse and A Death-Grip on Yesterday. Although Atreyu played most of their own catalog they did one cover from the legendary Bon Jovi. After Atreyu played When Two Are One they covered You Give Love A Bad Name which the audience could see and hear as they passed through the back of the amphitheater.
After briefly getting the crowd hyped up Bad Cop Bad Cop led into their first track, Retrograde from their 2017 album Warriors. Stacey Dee’s vocals and guitar dexterity are the perfect resurgence for the punk era the fans have been craving. They’re raw, the lyrics are real, and the performance is all left out on the stage at the end of the set. Co vocalist and guitarist Jennie Cotterill thanked the crowd for joining them on Warped Tour’s 25th anniversary before she kicked off the vocals for the song Why Change A Thing. This next song is about being sick and tired of gender stereotypes. If you fucking know this song get in the middle and scream out “I’m done” said bassist Linh Le. Le helped out on most of the vocals throughout the song which was a change-up from seeing her run and jump during the prior couple of tracks; however, she was still able to present the same amount of energy and intensity. Myra Gallarza was behind the drum kit providing the roaring beats for every song while somehow managing not to rock off her black sunglasses. Despite Gallarza being behind her fellow band members, many attendees were keeping their eyes glued to her consistent but fast pace during Retrograde.
Memphis May Fire came to the stage with an abundance of energy for their dedicated fans braving the heatwave as they played The Old Me. Matty Mullins who is the lead vocalist for the group introduced themselves before continuing on through their short but packed set. Regardless of how much stage time you give these fellas they will always put on a show to remember and one not to miss. We heard a few tracks from their newest album Broken as well as some of their older catalogs dating back to as far as 2012: Challenger, This Light I Hold, and Unconditional.
The All American Rejects put on a very interesting set, to say the least, but they also made sure to keep it nostalgic for the last and final Vans Warped Tour as they began their set with Swing, Swing. Tyson Ritter who is the lead vocalist and guitarist for The All American Rejects changed up a line of the lyrics and after the song came to a close told the audience “It’s the motherfuckin’ Warped Tour bitches!” Who wants to jump in a fucking time machine, huh? Let me hear the people say oooohhh come on mothafuckas and let me get the ladies on top of that shit like ahhhh…together, together like a legion of fucks.” Then The All American Rejects led into My Paper Heart followed by I Wanna. Both songs received some lyric changes on behalf of Ritter but the crowd didn’t seem to mind but instead found it rather comical. “It’s the last one of these mothafuckas do you really believe it? I don’t believe it at all. We are the All American Rejects and as the sun goes down the bands get older and older and so we are your mid 30’s 5 o’clock afternoon show. How many of you have been going to Warped Tour since the very beginning you old pieces of shaza? There’s like five of you people that are 70 I fucking love that shit. How many of you kids this is your first Warped Tour right now? Ah, man, you missed a lot of cool shit guys. We just put out a new song called Send Her To Heaven” said Ritter before leading into All American Rejects fourth song of the evening.
Personal and probably unpopular opinion: I’ve never seen The All American Rejects before nor looked into their live videos on YouTube so if the performance at Warped Tour is how their shows usually go down then I’m all for it; however, it seemed to me that Ritter sounded a bit off and his changing of the lyrics could be considered as abnormal. Again, if that’s his style as I have seen other bands do in the past then no harm no foul, but for some reason, the performance just seemed off to me. As a whole performance though I thought the sound and crowd interaction tied together perfectly. The albums they chose to pick from such as Move Along, self-titled, and When The World Comes Down were all wise choices for the Mountain View audience and it went over well with the crowd too.
Sum 41 got the crowd to keep up their energy with a ten-song set that drew in more audience members each song that went by. They chose to begin their set with The Hell Song followed by Motivation, and Over My Head (Better Off Dead) from their 2001 and 2002 albums All Killer No Filler & Does This Look Infected. Now that the crowd was back to their old school Sum 41 days the band went on to play We’re All To Blame, Out For Blood, and Walking Disaster. As expected Walking Disaster had one of the loudest audience sing-alongs I’ve heard in quite some time. Sum 41 did a cover of Queen’s We Will Rock You before closing out their set with In Too Deep, Fat Lip, and Still Waiting. Sum 41 brought The Warped tour back to the early 2000s (a place I wasn’t around for just yet in the scene) and a place that felt cool to be apart of celebrating 25 years of Vans Warped Tour and over 17 years of Sum 41. Sum 41 brought their ball out to play and kicked it all over town for 10 great songs. I’m looking forward to the next Sum 41 show.
Yungblud has been making headlines all over the world especially with his new track I Think I’m Okay alongside Machine Gun Kelly and Travis Barker. Not only did Yungblud have an insane show at The Roxy with MGK and Barker which led to Yungblud and MGK singing I Think I’m Okay on top of a tour bus but he brought his substantial personality and live performance to Mountain View for the final Warped Tour. Taking his set from his 2018 release of 21st Century Liability the only proper way to begin his set would be with that very song. Coming out in a dress and sunglasses Yungblud received a roaring ovation from the crowd. “How the fuck are we feeling? I am Yungblud. Let’s go! Jump! Jump” from there Yungblud was off his chain and ready to let loose. With a sea of cell phones in the air and fans jumping up and down the audience made the main stage look like the weaker stage compared to the Monster Energy stage on this set. “It’s good to be fucking back baby! Sorry, we’re a bit fucking late” Yungblud said as his tech strapped a guitar around him. “Y’all ready to fucking jump with me or what?” Then he led into I Love You, Will You Marry Me which had the Mountain View crowd chanting the chorus to the very uppity beat before a mean guitar solo was let out.
Yungblud ran the stage like a track, shaking his hips and grabbing his crotch from time to time which would receive loud pops from the crowd. “This next song is for Donald fucking Trump” Yungblud yelled as he played the introduction to King Charles. During the song, Yungblud and his guitarist spit on each other and then after Yungblud kissed him which was met with a few screams from the crowd. The young stud went on to play Anarchist, Parents, Machine Gun before he brought out his friend Machine Gun Kelly to play I Think I’m Okay. Despite having the crowd on their toes for his entire set bringing MGK out to play I Think I’m Okay led to one of the strongest endings Yungblud could’ve asked for. MGK and Yungblud crowd surfed their way to the Monster Energy tent behind the audience to finish the track and on their way to crowd surf back Yungblud had the entire audience singing “Goodnight” until he made it back to the stage. At that point, Yungblud said “we fucking love you! We’ll meet you out in the back in 5 minutes” as he walked off the stage.
NOFX had the most interesting set of circumstances on Sunday evening. According to the messenger, Kevin Lyman, NOFX was stuck in Canada as they had a show the night prior and were unable to make it in time due to flight cancellations and changes. Naturally, the crowd started to boo and were very upset that they wouldn’t be seeing one of their favorite punk bands. Luckily for the fans in attendance Lyman was able to make a few phone calls to get a private jet to pick up NOFX and fly them down to San Jose and were even able to get them a police escort to the venue to ensure they arrived as quickly as possible. To hold the crowd over for the time being some band members and some full bands banded together to play some NOFX covers while we awaited NOFX.
Thrice played Linoleum, John Feldman played Bob & Superman (Goldfinger) with Marc, Brandon, and Dan from Atreyu, Anthony Green from Circa Survive, Yungblud, Bert McCracken from The Used, and Hyro Da Hero. Some of the other members to participate in the NOFX covers of The Brews and many others were Kenny from The Starting Line, Sergio from Quicksand, and Mike and Tyson from All American Rejects. The artists also invited up two members (Aaron & Twitch) from the crowd to help sing the tracks. During the song, NOFX appeared and joined in on the song before taking over for the rest of their set.
“Goddammit we’re here,” said Hefe. Fat Mike followed up with “I’ve never seen Hefe so drunk.” Fat Mike tried to ease the tension with the only way he knows how by saying “I know we’re late, but somebody came up to me and asked me if I was late. 6 months late (looking down at his gut).” After they were able to set up their gear they led into Six Pack Girls. NOFX won back the crowd despite being late with the tracks Bob, Linoleum, Stickin’ My Eye, and 72 Hookers. For a band that just got off a plane and were rushed to a festival on a whim, NOFX pulled their act together pretty well and put on a show I’m sure they were proud of.
Day 2 of The Vans Warped Tour was more somber as we said our goodbyes to our old stomping grounds, but as mentioned on day one we remain hopeful that Warped Tour once again shall return and reunited fans worldwide. It was a really cool experience to see many artists pull together for the sake of one to continue a show for the fans while we awaited NOFX and what an honor to close out the night that way Warped Tour bbq style.
RIP Warped Tour. 1995-2019.