Words & Photos by Joe Calixto
So after an entire year of waiting, we are back again in Pomona, CA for the final stop of the Vans Warped Tour. After 51 days of pure fun and mayhem on the road, this traveling punk rock party came to a complete stop in the lovely and extremely (2x) sunny Southern California.
The Pomona Fairplex is no stranger to the Warped Tour. Although a lot of the SoCal stops like Los Angeles, Carson and Ventura have all fallen (along with San Diego), Pomona has kept strong as a repeat venue.
Enough of that bullshit!
So the festival offered a very very diverse line up this year but I was more focused on the heavier side of things. The VWT enlisted some of hardcore’s most legendary acts like Sick of It All and Hatebreed, which honestly I was incredibly excited to see. Also bands like CKY and Gwar were in the mix – definitely crowd favorites.
The Full Sail Stage was home to a lot of the tour’s most anticipated bands – Oldham, Kentucky’s Knocked Loose, Orange County’s very own Movements, Blackpool’s Boston Manor, and Newcastle’s Trophy Eyes were noticeably the day’s most sought at acts.
I’ve noticed in the past years that crowds would prioritize main stage acts which is kind of a bummer because the small guys never stood a chance, but this time around I feel like more people would check out the smaller stages. Which is IMO pretty fucking cool!
So moving on to the Monster Energy Mutant stages. The place brought all sorts of heavy. From bands like Hatebreed, Carnifex, Emmure, The Acacia Strain and Stick to Your Guns. It felt like a Cobalt Cafe line up over there.
Counterparts ended the day on a high with a high energy performance on that side of the grounds and Hawthorne Heights dropped a nostalgia bomb on the Journey’s side of the festival.
My personal favorite, and to be completely honest, one of the only bands I wanted to see at Warped Tour, Microwave played the Skullcandy stage and I completely lost my mind. I just wanted to put it out there. I missed 4 other bands who I wanted to check out but fuck it! Microwave is one of the best bands on this tour and they’re on one of the best damn labels. No bullshit!
Anyway, you probably didn’t read that entire thing but I hope you enjoyed some of the photos from the day.
Until next year, I wonder what crazy shenanigans Kevin Lyman has in store for us, oh and also…… BRING BACK VENTURA FOR FUCK SAKE!
I couldn’t wait for the summer and the Warped Tour
I remember it’s the first time that I saw her there