Warped Tour 2015

I used my really great (and obvious) title for last year’s Warped recap, so I’m stuck with generically listing them from now on.

Anyway, this was my SIXTH Warped experience!


For some reason, a bunch of bands on our list were playing between 1:50 and 3:20, so it was hard to determine who we saw and who we neglected, but we generally went with bands we’d never seen before (which meant I missed Neck Deep and The Wonder Years, but that’s okay because they both have new albums coming out, so I’ll catch them on tour). We “discovered” some new bands we ended up liking it (Moose Blood), saw some old favourites (Family Force 5), and managed to catch the top three bands we most wanted to see: PVRIS, Hands Like Houses, and Mallory Knox.

In order of when we saw them:

As It Is

They sound better live than they do recorded; also, he has a very high voice.


Vocalist Lynn sounds even more powerful live than recorded, and it’s so impressive. They played the main stage, and it was well deserved.

Moose Blood

A British band that has an old-school Taking Back Sunday vibe? Count me in!

Hands Like Houses

Three words: Australian David Beckham. The music is excellent too.

Asking Alexandria

We weren’t that impressed with them, which was sad because we were expecting their set to blow us away.

Black Veil Brides

Andy’s voice is considerably deeper than you would expect from someone who looks so effeminate, but it was a pleasant surprise.

Man Overboard

Classic pop-punk. You can’t really go wrong with Man Overboard, even if Zac’s dancing weirds us out.

Family Force 5

It’s impossible to stand still during one of their shows – it’s always so much fun.

Set It Off

“Why Worry” is such a jam.

Mallory Knox

We were front row and we didn’t stop screaming from the time they walked on stage. It was amazing.

We also saw part of ’68,Juliet Simms, and August Burns Red, plus the first song from This Wild Life before we wandered away to look for the Mallory Knox band members (we ended up finding Mikey, the singer, who was very sweet!).

Overall, it was one of the most successful Warped experiences we’ve had, despite it raining for the first 6.5 hours (including an hour when we were standing in line to get in). I can’t wait to see what next year brings!

So when you lose your mind, you’ll find it at the bottom of the mess that’s your life

I think I’ve said this before, but Sunday concerts are weird, man. They throw off my entire weekend. But at the end of the day (literally), I’m at a show, and that’s all that matters!

Yesterday, we saw Bayside on their 15th anniversary tour!


The opening band was Seaway; they’re from Oakville (Ontario), so they’re fairly local (and now I put the twenty one pilots song back in my head…). I quite enjoyed them; they’re like the Canadian Neck Deep- unabashedly pop-punk. There is something kinda funny about a dude in a button-down shirt and glasses calling for a circle pit, though.

Next up was Man Overboard. We saw them headline last May, and while we spent part of the time chuckling at Zac’s high pitched voice, I forgot how much I actually enjoy them. They’re the type of band where you either jump around practicing your scissor kicks or sit around feeling angsty about your life. It’s a broad spectrum, but they cover it really well.

The highlight for us was “Montrose”: DO YOU TAKE PICTURES OFF THE WALLS?

Senses Fail came on next; we thought this tour was odd because the last time we saw Bayside (October 2010), they had actually been opening for Sense Fail (what a role reversal!). Ro pointed out that they would have been the first really screamy band that I saw live (with the possible exception of Set Your Goals in November 2009, but since I griped through their whole set because I was bored, I don’t think they count).

Buddy, the singer, took the opportunity to have some heart-to-heart moments with the audience, mainly surrounding his own recent coming-out as queer (you can read/listen to his story here). You wouldn’t think so based on appearances, but the (pop)punk/metal community tends to be very tolerant of other people’s differences. Buddy’s point was that in a world full of fear, we should strive to see our neighbours with compassion, and his words were met with a roar of approval.

And, to punctuate his point, he segued into “Can’t Be Saved”, which is the song that introduced us to Sense Fail in the first place (because it was on Guitar Hero…).

Bayside came on to “Hedwig’s Theme” (you know you’re a Harry Potter fan when!) and kicked off their set with “Pigsty”, which I really like.

I have to admit: I haven’t listened to every Bayside song ever. If fact, I’ve really only heard a handful of them, and so has Ro. But how often do bands tour for anniversaries (and actually come to Toronto)? Of course we had to go to this show!

And, of course, it’s always nice to be surrounded by hardcore fans, though. You start to feed off their energy, even if you don’t recognize the song.

I also find that I often have a greater appreciation for a band after seeing them live, and that is definitely the case this time around. I’ll be looking up Bayside’s (extensive) discography in the next couple of weeks, because I genuinely enjoyed what I heard.

Get it together, get a grip, take a breath

Surprisingly, we haven’t gone to the Mod Club so far this year, but we went yesterday to see the most pop-punk show of the year since The Wonder Years last month: The Heart Attack Tour featuring Knuckle Puck, Forever Came Calling, Transit, and (headlined by) Man Overboard.

Man Overboard: the one with the glasses and hat is Zac, the singer. The one is the middle is Nik who also sings. I don’t know the other dudes. 

The first band to go on was Knuckle Puck. I didn’t realize it until later, but I’ve actually heard one of their songs before. They’re fun, generically pop-punk (that’s mostly a compliment), and I respect the singer for keeping his glasses on while head-banging/jumping around the stage (it’s not easy, trust me).

Next was Forever Came Calling who was also good, but honestly, their songs all sort of blended together so I can pick one particular one to include here.

Transit and Man Overboard are apparently really close friends (they’ve done at least one split EP), so it made sense for them to tour together. They also have a very similar vibe and I don’t know how to describe their sound apart from saying POP-PUNK over and over again. Transit was good, the crowd was insane (so many crowd-surfers, which was absurd because the crowd was not big enough to support more than two people at one shot), and the singer continued to sing while flailing in the pit, which was impressive.

You know Boston never drinks alone.

I’ve listened to most of Man Overboard’s songs, but I’m not overly familiar with their first two albums. Luckily, this tour was in support of the third album, 2013’s Heart Attack, which I have listened to several times and therefore knew a lot of the songs (even though I can’t tell you the names of said songs). I was very happy (ironically) when they played “S.A.D.” because it wasn’t on the setlist from Montreal (the tour kicked off in Montreal on Tuesday, so we were the second date – that so rarely happens!) and it happens to be my favourite Man Overboard song.

I hate me, so unoriginal. No other feeling could feel so traditional. 

I don’t know the lyrics to many songs, but I did enjoy them. If anything I think like – with The Wonder Years – I now like them more after seeing them live than I did before (though Ro said she might not be able to listen to them any more because Zac has an incredibly high-pitched voice in real life and it was driving her crazy). I’m glad we saw them – at $20 a ticket, it was a small price to pay for us to “Defend Pop Punk” for one night.