Merriweather Post Pavilion
The 2017 Warped Tour had a noticeable difference in audience size compared to years past. The crowd was much smaller this year and the overall billing featured acts that leaned more toward the “metal” side of things.
It's interesting that the first thing I witnessed upon entering the venue was a one man, white rapper who was breaking free style raps with a boombox. Most of the crowd walked right past the gentleman and that was the last anyone saw of him for the rest of the day!
Hearing Municipal Waste churn out a set of sludgy metal in the AM was a pleasant change from the years past where pop punk reigned supreme at Warped.
Hands Like Houses performed early in the day and their set was clear, precise, and heavy. The musicians in the band look like California Hippie Hipsters, their look is not really fitting for their sound.
Sylar are a New York based hip hop/metal band and currently have a nice buzz going for them. Their set was short, to the point, and featured an interesting man with red braids and a gold grill, I’d describe him as a white version of Flavor Flav.
Creeper are an English band that formed in 2014 and their sound is The Ramones mixed with The Misfits. Will Gould handles lead vocals and his onstage appearance is similar to Joey Ramone while lead guitarist Ian Miles looks like a hybrid of My Chemical Romance meets John 5. Creeper were the band to see on this day, they performed on one of the smaller stages and generated an amazing response from the small crowd that caught their early morning set.
At the Warped Tour stop in Holmdel, New Jersey on the day prior, Jamey Jasta was absent due to the passing of his Grandmother. Guest vocalists from The Acacia Strain, Municipal Waste, and Emmure filled in for Jasta. On this day Jasta made it a point to thank the band, the guest vocalists, and the fans for allowing him the time to go home for his Grandmothers funeral. Towards the middle of Hatebreed’s set Jamey commented that Hatebreed started with Ozzfest and that was where their roots were. That comment was slightly lost on the younger kids who clearly had no idea what “Ozzfest” was. Hatebreed sold a limited edition shirt for this show which said, “I survived the Hatebreed Pit in Columbia, MD” and the shirts sold completely out by the end of Hatebreed’s set. Interesting side note, at the Hatebreed merch table you could buy an official Hatebreed fidget spinner!
The Ataris look at tad haggard in 2017 yet still sound just as tight as they did in the beginning.
William Control delivered an interesting dose of electro-dance-pop which offered the crowd a polar opposite to the what was a mostly metal billing.
Save Ferris have been inactive for over a decade and this tour reintroduced the group to a new set of ears.
CKY gained mass popularity thanks to Bam Margera and in 2017 the group are doing an interesting reunion tour in support of a new record entitled “The Phoenix”. CKY fell a little flat on this day and their set was lackluster due in part to Hatebreed destroying the crowd prior to CKY taking the stage.
The Alarm are an older act that most younger people at the Warped Tour clearly had not have heard of. Mike Peters delivered a solid performance of old school indie/alt rock and most bands were praising The Alarm for being pioneers in their genre.
Sick of it All delivered an old school set of short, fast, and to the point Hard Core. The crowd loved it and the band were clearly having the time of their lives onstage.
Gwar closed out the side stage area with a show that was non stop blood! Interestingly enough, Gwar’s set closed with the AC/DC classic “If You Want Blood” and I am not joking when I tell you, the entire Gwar set was from start to finish, non stop blood. Gwar usually feature 2 guitarists onstage but for this performance they had just one guitarist.
Antiflag's merch tent had the best shirts because almost all of their artwork ripped off other bands. One particular shirt featured the KISS solo faces with a band logo that blatantly stole from Slayer. I was told that particular shirt was only being sold at the Warped Tour.
The 2017 Vans Warped Tour featured more metal bands than ever before but sadly the turn out for this particular show was extremely low compared to years past.