My Vans Warped Tour experience this year was much different from last year, first off it was not 106 degrees outside and the gamut of bands on the bill was not as intensely hardy compared to the 2012 lineup. I got to the festival late so I missed out on two acts I really wanted to catch and I was tasked with covering as much material as I could that fit along with the listening audience of the radio station I photograph for. That task resulted in my cover 7 bands which were Motion City Soundtrack, Reel Big Fish, August Burns Red, Billy Talent, The Chariot, Defeater, and Super Water Sympathy. I went home with some great pics, enjoyed some very comfortable weather for July, and came home to download two new records that I’ve currently been jamming on repeat…so not a bad day at all! Below is a summary of the highlights from my Vans Warped Tour experience:
- The Chariot-This band is insane, I’ve photographed them once before at a small club in St. Louis and I thought I knew what to accept. I was fantastically surprised with what this 4 piece “screamo” metal band can do with a big stage. All the band members were bouncing from each side of the stage totally being erratic, which falls in line perfectly with their style of music. They are epic for a heavy band which is refreshing in that genre.
- Reel Big Fish-They were one of the most entertaining acts I’ve seen in a long time. With a total of six members on stage and completely loving their craft, you could tell they were enjoying seeing the crowd having a good time. You would have never guessed this was a band that had their breakthrough about 15 years ago with their single “Sell Out”, I also ran into the saxophone and trombone player in the crowd and they were some of the most genuine people I’ve met. Both were very down to earth and humble, we even discussed the heat of a St. Louis summer and Forest Park.
- Super Water Sympathy-Okay, now I have to add another crush to my list of front women that totally enthrall me. Vocalist Ansley Hughes is not only very pretty, her performance on stage is also just as mesmerizing as her appearance.
- Defeater-This is the band that played before The Chariot and I was actually just waiting through, in listening to their whole set I was pretty impressed. Trust me if you want a new hard hitting heavy album with lyrics that will paint the most vivid rage filled picture of life at it’s most damaging of times, then I highly suggest checking out their lasted release.
- Billy Talent-I’ve had one of this bands records for sometime and never really knew how to feel about it, after seeing them live I totally had to jam to them today.
Enjoy the photos because their are a lot of them, between 10-20 images per band!