Noisecreep's Guide to Warped Tour 2009: The Heavy Edition
With the economy in the dismal shape that it's in, it's not surprising that the Warped Tour is scaling down a bit. Instead of three main stages like they've had the prior 14 years, festival founder Kevin Lyman announced that they'll just have one and giving bands an extra 10 minutes of performance time. Looking at the artist line up this year, it's clear to see that there is still a lot to take in and with the wide-ranging variety of genres, there's a little something there for most fans.
At Noisecreep, we're fully aware that most of you are too busy to keep up with all of the bands who are playing Warped Tour this year so we're here to help you navigate through it. Here's a quick list of heavier bands that are on the festival this year that are worth your time. Think of it as a cheat sheet without all the guilt attached.
Black Tide This Florida act might be signed to the folks at Interscope but their music has more in common with the thrash bands that called smaller labels like Combat Records home in the late 1980s. Their debut album, 'Light From Above,' is packed to the gills with an army of nasty riffs and big vocal hooks but it's their live show that will make you a believer.
Emmure Hatebreed put Connecticut on the underground hardcore and metal map but Emmure are certainly doing their part. The metallic hardcore quintet's 2008 album, 'The Respect Issue,' helped make them one of the more popular bands in Victory Records' stable of acts. Look for vocalist Frankie Palmeri to lead the crowds into frenzied circle pits afternoon after sweaty afternoon.
Gallows Already headliners in their native UK, Gallows just released 'Grey Britain,' an uncompromising collection of tracks that echo the harsh sounds and sentiment of bands like Black Flag and Cancer Bats. It's going to be interesting to see how fans of bands like brokenCYDE and The Maine will react to Gallows' chaotic sonic attack. We're guessing there won't be too many neon t-shirts within the stage's perimeter during their sets.
He Is Legend Take in a big helping of metal infused hardcore with dashes of 1970s boogie guitar sprinkled on top and wash it all down with one generous swig of stoner rock and you'll have an idea of what He Is Legend is all about. In Adam Tanbouz, the group has one of the most underrated guitarists you'll find in the underground today. He deals out, what seems like, a never-ending flurry of riffs that combines the gritty soul of vintage Iommi with the dissonance of current day Dillinger Escape Plan.
In This Moment With all of these heavier bands playing Warped Tour this year, the addition of In This Moment to the line up speaks volumes about the festival's diversity. Lead by vocalist Maria Brink, the group's 'The Dream' album has the kind of stadium-sized choruses that will undoubtedly go over well with Warped Tour attendees who like a lot of melody in their metal. We're just wondering if Brink will be wearing her famous baby doll dresses in that awful summer heat. We hope not for her sake.
The Devil Wears Prada Friends of Noisecreep, The Devil Wears Prada will draw some of the festival's largest crowds. Their recent popularity has found the Ohio five piece headlining the kinds of venues usually reserved for veteran acts. TDWP specialize in archaic metalcore but their newer material manages to squeeze in more melodic bursts than their previous two albums had. If you want to catch these dudes at Warped this year just make sure you get to their stage at least one hour before they are scheduled to play.
Underoath In 2006 Underoath dropped out of their main stage slot after having inner band issues and a feud with NOFX's Fat Mike. The group is returning this year in fighting form and armed with the best batch of songs of their career. 'Lost in the Sound of Separation' was one of 2008's most coveted metal releases and it's going to be interesting to see what the band chooses to play in their short 40 minute set. With so many fan favorites to pick from, they'll definitely let some people down, but it's the kind of problem most bands would kill for.