Wednesday, July 02, 2008

UR So Gay: Warped Tour 2008

Skinny white boys with guitars have gone a little stale for me.

Since that's Warped Tour's stock in trade, I decided to approach this year's edition of the annual festival from a different angle. As a crusty Warped Tour veteran, and because only a few of the skinny white boys with guitars (SWBWG) on this year's schedule appealed to me, I made it a mission to deliberately seek out alternatives at the so-called alternative festival.

I wasn't disappointed.

Far and away the most popular act appearing in Bonner Springs, Kansas, Wednesday was the female-fronted Paramore. The second hottest artist on the bill was Katy Perry. She currently owns the #1 song in the country, "I Kissed a Girl." I prefer "UR So Gay", Perry's other big hit. Also, Travis McCoy of Gym Class Heroes made international headlines just the day before by getting arrested after accosting a fan in St. Louis.

No corner of the Warped Tour grounds may be less popular than the hip hop tent. Yet it's where much of the most vital sounds can be heard. That's Kansas City favorite Reach above.

Othello (in green) studies MilkDrop.

"I know hip hop isn't for everyone," Othello told passerby. "If we're not going to keep it real, let's keep it fake."

I couldn't tell if Piotta was kidding. He has a Borat-style vibe going on. The Italian is pointing at me because I was his entire audience.

I don't know what's happening here. I quickly retreated after grabbing this shot.

3OH!3 is a duo that goofs on house, hip hop and electronica. They became annoying after ten minutes. The similar but superior Kansas City act Bacon Shoe manages to keep me laughing for a full thirty minutes.

Although I listened to about twenty minutes of Paramore's set from the side of the stage, I wasn't brave enough to elbow my way through the group's rabid fans to get a decent snapshot. Instead, here's a picture of thousands of happy young ladies watching their heroine.

Charlotte Something caught a really bad break- she performed opposite Paramore.

Fight! Fight! Fight! is from St. Louis.

The Warped Tour is always good for a handful of surprises. This year two acts I'd never heard of completely astounded me. The Lordz, a group of Brooklyn geezers, were right in my wheelhouse.

"How many of you people know Run-DMC? The Clash? The Ramones?" the guy in the hat asked. "Mix all that sh*t up and this is what you got."


Comedic rapper MC Chris drew about 200 fans who knew the words to most every song. What the heck! Who were these dorky guys and "Nrrrd Grrrrl"s? Yeah, I fit right in. Word up!

The Horrorpops brought the psychobilly.

I don't know the age of Brandon Phillips, but he's no longer a boy. The Architects remain one of Kansas City's best live bands.

And what about the SWBWG? Well, I'll confess to enjoying Against Me!, Say Anything and August Burns Red. I even liked the Higher's funky pop songs.

I just had to include a second image of Katy Perry. She's teasing a security guy in this shot.

A lot of drama was associated with the day's Gym Class Heroes performance. Travis McCoy was arrested onstage less than 24 hours previously. Cries of "Free Travis" were raised from stages throughout the day.

In spite of a pronounced limp, Travis was there and in fine form.

"I made a boo boo yesterday," he admitted.

The guy's a rock star.

It had been unbearably humid all day. About twenty minutes into the Gym Class Heroes' set, rain began to fall. The band tore into a thrash number. Buckets of rain suddenly fell from the sky.

You haven't lived until you've heard hundreds of emo kids scream in response to nearby lightning strikes. I imagine some of the loudest shrieks came from SWBWG.


Blogger Chimpotle said...

The Lordz (formerly Lordz of Brooklyn) have been around forever. They used to tour with Sublime and were quite chummy with House of Pain back when both were still relevent.

I hope MC accented that outfit with some nice black socks.

12:00 PM  
Blogger Happy In Bag said...

Thanks, Chimpo. Although the Lordz made reference to a connection to Tim Armstrong of Rancid, I had no idea...

Stumbling into MC Chris was surreal. I still laugh when I think about it.

2:47 PM  
Blogger Donna. W said...

No comment on Story of the Year? I like them.

4:47 PM  
Blogger Happy In Bag said...

They're SWBWG, Donna! And I think they played early against the Bronx, so I missed them.

8:28 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Check our my video of Katy Perry performing UR SO GAY LIVE!

2:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yep, its a must you go find the Lordz of Brooklyn debut CD. They had a TV show this spring on FUSE that followed their comeback. It ran alongside the NOFX show. Only 2 shows I think I have watched through an entire season for years.

12:36 AM  
Blogger Happy In Bag said...

Black Clover in the house! That's all news to me, although I did catch one episode of the NOFX show. Those guys are knuckleheads.

10:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


7:50 AM  

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