Warped Tour 2012 – July 21, Merriweather Post Pavilion

Well, another Warped Tour has come and gone. I can’t believe I’ve been going since 2003. This year’s lineup actually resembled the 2003/2004 lineups, which was really fun for me. I felt like I was in high school again! Warped Tour goes in trends- screamo, pop-punk, electronica, hard core- this year I think the theme was classic. Bands like Yellowcard, New Foudn Glory and The Used, who were at their peaks when I was in high school, returned as if they’d never left.

We Are The In Crowd

There actually weren’t a ton of bands I was interested in seeing this year, but Yellowcard, NFG, Mayday Parade and We Are The In Crowd were enough to get me to sit out in the sun all day and sweat. I honestly didn’t recognize a lot of bands on the smaller stages. Maybe I’m just not keeping up with “the scene” as much as I used to!

My day started with We Are The In Crowd, a bouncy pop rock band from New York. Led by vocalist Tay Jardine, they had a small, but dedicated crowd at the Tilly Stage. They played a selection of songs from their EP and most recent full length and put on a great show.

Mayday Parade

Next up was Mayday Parade. There was only one stage set up in the amphitheater this year which made it tough to see a lot. I can usually sit there for awhile and cool off and shoot one band, then another immediately after the first band’s set finishes. I wasn’t able to stay for all of Mayday’s set, but I’ve literally photographed them a dozen times, so I got the shots I needed and ran off to catch New Found Glory on the main stage (at the opposite end of the venue).

I’ve been a fan of NFG for years. They were one of the first bands I got into when I started listening to pop punk. They haven’t changed a bit since I last saw them (2008 maybe) and put on an energetic show, full of jumps and plenty of crowd interaction.

New Found Glory

To be honest, I only snapped a few photos of Falling In Reverse for my brother who likes them. Not my cup of tea at all, but the pit in front of the stage wasn’t as crazy as I expected for them.

Next up was Tonight Alive, a band from Australia. I’d never seen them live, but I enjoy their music enough to want to check them out. They had a decent crowd and played a cover of Mumford and Sons “Little Lion Man” which I really liked.

Yellowcard played on the main stage next. I hadn’t seen them live since probably 2004. They went on a hiatus a few years ago, but have come back sounding better than ever. They played a good mix of songs from their large catalog and ended with fan favorite “Ocean Avenue”.

Yellowcard

Last but not least was All Time Low. I’m not a huge fan of their music, but Maryland is there hometown and they’re fun to shoot, so off I went to the amphitheater again. They had the biggest crowd of the day and absolutely sold out the place for a 30 minute set. They sounded solid as usual and I did my best with the poor lighting.

Warped Tour is always a fun time, even though you’re sweaty and gross by the end of the day. I think you can never be too old for it and there’s always something for everyone’s tastes. It’s a great place to discover new bands, learn about good causes, and spend $40 on overpriced lunch and drinks like I did by the end of the day!

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