It’s A Zoo Out There!
Date: August 9, 2015
Venue: White River Amphitheatre
City: Auburn, WA
Highlight: Playing the largest game of beer pong ever during Attila’s set…without beer, while listening to Fronz make sexual innuendos about playing with balls.
Reviewed By: Desiree Mark
The posters for this years Van’s Warped Tour are covered in a collection of animals about to bust out of a zoo, which we find fitting, because sometimes a day at Warped Tour can actually feel a lot like a day at the zoo. Think about it, you walk around checking out the “exhibits”, but instead of animals, your watching musicians, and instead of being in cages their on stages. Andddd…have you ever tried to get a hold of a bottle of water at Warped later in the day? I’d imagine being a wildebeest fighting for a spot at the local watering hole is on par as difficult.
Anyways, we thought it may be fun to do something a little different this year and compare your favourite bands to their zoo spirit animals. So in an attempt at what could possibly be the strangest review of the tour you’ve read this year, let’s get started!
First up is Attila, possibly the most obvious of all the animal comparisons, even though it may be a made up animal, Attila are definitely the “Party Animals”, and that’s exactly what their set was all about. Everyone was up, everyone was dancing, the pit was absolutely crazy, you want to see a stampede, well, according to Fronz Attila holds the ‘World Record” for the largest circle pit at Warped, so when he opened the pit, well…you know that scene in Lion King where Mufasa gets trampled to death, it was like that- dust and debris flying everywhere, to the sound of “Shots For The Boys”, except no people, or lions died. Thank goodness! Now we all know Fronz likes to be a bit of a trendsetter, which was evident in the fact that he was the only one on Warped Tour sporting a stark white raincoat/space suit, but him and Attila were also the first ones to bring a good old game of lifesize beer pong to the tour (sans beer unfortunately).
Next, you can’t write a review of Warped Tour without mentioning one of the most sought after sets of the day, Pierce The Veil. These guys are veterans to the stages of Warped and always bring an energetic live show. We’d compare Vic, Tony, Mike, and Jaime to the cute lil’ monkeys at the zoo because they’re always jumping around and putting on a show, you just can’t get enough of them! They’re also absolutely adorable, and you always wish you could take one home.
Did You Know? During an after show BBQ party at one of the Warped dates two tour workers actually got married! If that doesn’t sound cute enough, Vic and Jaime serenaded them with a special version of “Kissing In Cars” for their first dance. Be sure to check out the video clip on the RM Instagram!
Asking Alexandria was another must-see set of the tour, for many of us it was our first introduction to new vocalist Denis Stoff. With big shoes to fill following the departure of true rock-n-roll embodiment Danny Worsnop, many fans were left wondering if Denis would have what it takes. With all eyes center stage Denis stepped up to the plate and it all immediately made sense. A natural fit, and a talented vocalist that easily fit in amongst the AA Family. Rest assured Asking Alexandria fans, the mics in good hands. We chose the bear as the AA spirit animal, because everything about their set was big and powerful. The vocals were big, the audience was big, the sound was BIG, and its only going to get bigger from here as the band grows and creates together.
Every year I have to mention at least one artist that before Warped Tour I hadn’t heard of. Warped Tour is exceptional for introducing fans to new bands, and filling our iTunes with new music for the rest of the summer. Beautiful Bodies is Remember MEdia’s must see this year! Fronted by Miss Alicia Solombrino, and her soaring vocals, you can’t help but get caught up in this new band from our friends at Epitaph. Talk about insta-catchy pop lyrics, and an equally as fun live performance!
We absolutely loved the stage presence of guitarist Thomas Becker who seemed entirely unable to sit still, first he’s sitting on the edge of the stage nearly on securities shoulders, looking like he’s waiting for the piggyback to start anytime soon, then next thing you know he’s flying through the air after jumping off an amp, then hopping over the barricade to get up close and personal with fans in the pit. We’re calling Beautiful Bodies the foxes of Warped, A. Because frontwoman Alicia Solombrino is a fox, and B. their on stage antics are mischievous and meddlesome just like their fluffy tail counterparts.
Every year it seems Warped Tour has to bring along one artist that just doesn’t quite make sense. You know one of these things is not like the other… well… Riff Raff. I know zoos don’t normally have sheep, but Riff Raff’s spirit animal was the black sheep of Warped.
“In one of the strangest sets in Warped Tour to history I stood watching a man and his entourage have a party on stage, but not one we were necessarily invited to, it was almost like watching a bad party scene on TV from the couch, but don’t worry, at least snacks were provided. That’s right whether you liked it or not during one song Riff Raff and his entourage opened packages of every sort of snack food you could imagine, chips, oreos…beef jerky, and for lack of a better expression- ‘made it rain.'”
I was caught in the midst of a snack-nado and all could do was stand their in confusion as to what I was witnessing.
Up next were the Pride of Australia, Hands Like Houses who had no issue with calling out Riff Raff for playing over his allotted set time and unfortunately failing to realize that no one really cared about him as much as he cared about himself. Hands Like Houses were a vision in lavender as they quickly reminded us what live instruments actually sound like, making the most of their shortened set time. I apologize in advance for being predictable but these guys were the koalas of the Warped zoo, they are just so cute and lovable to watch, and also in true Aus fashion seemed so chill, especially when they all sat together on the stage in a sort of kumbaya moment.
Black Veil Brides are the panda’s of Warped Tour. My personal favourite at the zoo, BVB in their earlier years, even dawned a similar dark eye makeup look. But seriously, the crowd is always MASSIVE around the pandas… and Andy Black. Their set did not disappoint, epic guitar riffs from Jake Pitts and nearly as epic fog framed the band as the rain started to fall, making an already picturesque moment even more movie scene worthy.
Reviewing Warped Tour is always one of the most difficult tasks of the year for me as a music reporter, it is nearly impossible to fit the amount of talent, and stories from a day at Warped into an article anything shorter than a novel, so I apologize to all the other amazing bands out there that I missed. The moral of the story is “Warped is a must-experience summer tour that you just have to see for yourself!”
Seeing as Auburn was the last of the 40 dates of this year’s Vans Warped Tour, nothing was held back, all the bands and fans gave it their all, and helped send off Warped Tour 2015 in true rock fashion.
Join me in saying farewell to another successful year, and a big thank you to Warped creator Kevin Lyman and everyone else who makes this first-class event possible!