Warped Tour Rundown 2008 – Kansas City (Part Two)

Below is the second installment of Josh’s rundown of Warped Tour. Enjoy.

1:50 P.M. – 2:20 P.M. The Briggs – Hurley Stage

The BriggsOf all the bands at Warped Tour this year, The Briggs were at the top of the list of bands I wanted to see. It is safe to say, they didn’t let me down. Sporting a sound as rich as Dropkick Murphys and as strong lyrically as Rancid, in my book The Briggs are punk superstars.

Personal memories of the day’s performance were forced on me when one of the group’s vocalists, Joey LaRocca, stole, wore and threw my sunglasses into the crowd. But you can’t really fault a band for having too much energy. Their live show excels because of this energy. You can expect them to be in your face, in your head and in the crowd at some point during the show. Absolutely check this band out!

Grade: A+

2:20 P.M. to 2:30 P.M. Reel Big Fish – Route 66 Stage

reelI’m not shy to admit that I completely love ska. Less than Jake, Goldfinger, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones and Reel Big Fish are legends in my book. I have been involved in music, in some form, for 15 years now, yet today was my first shot at seeing Reel Big Fish. Furthermore, due to scheduling conflicts with the day, I could only catch ten minutes of their set. Complete bummer.

But from what I saw, regardless of what is said by the talking heads and critics, ska is alive and well. Reel Big Fish had one of the tightest, musically prepared sets of the day. They don’t fuck around. This is an outstanding band that you should do your best to catch while you still can, if not only to see their amazing version of “Take on Me.”

Grade: A+

2:50 P.M. to 3:20 Jack’s Mannequin – Highway One Stage

Growing up, I loved Something Corporate. There is just something magical about piano being used as a punk type instrument. While it has become somewhat the norm to have keys in a band these days, Something Corporate kind of pioneered the sound. Having seen Something Corporate several times in their life, I was really excited to see how Jack’s Mannequin stacked up against them.

I must say I was surprised to find that Jack’s actually had the upper hand. While Andrew McMahon seemed to lack the energy he once had in Something Corporate, his showmanship and stage conduct seemed to have improved, as unbelievable as that may seem. Unfortunately, a fairly modest sized stage and a grand piano somewhat boxed MacMahon in, leaving him with very little room to move. This of course was completely forgivable due to the perfect pitch and wonderful chemistry of the band. The instrumentation and dynamics of each member worked flawlessly, making for a very beautiful performance. I was left completely without complaints.

Grade A-

Jack\'s

4:20 P.M. – 4:45 P.M. The Color Fred – Hurley Stage

fredI really have to eat crow regarding The Color Fred. I had written them off due to their affiliation to Taking Back Sunday since I am an avid supporter of Straylight Run. They won me in the divorce. So my assumption was that since it was Fred Mascherino’s job to replace members of Taking Back Sunday after they began losing members left and right, he too must be associated with the evil empire.

I was completely mistaken. The Color Fred’s music is not only pleasant and refreshing, it exceeded my expectations of creativity. I was really quite pleased with the bands performance. With the exception of some technical mishaps, the band’s set was rather flawless. I look forward to seeing them again. Thank god I sucked it up and gave them a shot.

I was an asshole for not doing so before.

Grade: A-

The Briggs: website | myspace
Reel Big Fish: website | myspace
Jack’s Mannequin: website | myspace
The Color Fred: website | myspace

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