In case you haven’t heard, the Vans Warped Tour is officially over. After 25 years, Kevin Lyman has decided to pull the plug on one of the most influential and well-known festivals in modern music history.
Going out with a bang a couple weeks back at the Shoreline Amphitheater, Lyman said goodbye to the passionate community he helped build as punk rock legends NOFX strummed the last ever notes played on a Warped Tour stage.
Now, before we officially let Warped Tour drift off into the sunset, there’s still one matter of business to attend to. As you may have seen from our Warped Atlantic City coverage, we decided to give out some of the most highly coveted and super fake awards ever created.
See, doing our best to recap the final Saturday and Sunday spent at the Vans Warped Tour, we decided to do something a little different. Instead of boring you with your typical 2,000-word concert review meticulously describing each and every artist we saw out in Mountian View, CA, instead, we wanted to try something a little more entertaining. And since there’s nothing more entertaining than award shows (unless you’re the MTV Music Awards), we decided to create and give out awards to all the artists we saw at the final West Coast Warped Tour. If you like the idea, great! If you don’t, we really don’t care.
To help us say goodbye to the Vans Warped Tour one last time, be sure to check out who took home the award for the Skunkiest Set or the Area 51 Preparation Award below. Afterward, for more Vans Warped Tour coverage, head here.
Best Skate Soundtrack
Photos by Briana Bonilla
Since we’re unsure if the Vans’ halfpipe was in action during Goldfinger’s set, especially when they played “Superman,” we’re giving this award to the band that was actually playing while Tony Hawk Pro Skater alum Bucky Laskey hand-planted and McTwist-ed all over the place. And that band was… drum roll, please… Canada’s own Sum 41! If you’ve never had the pleasure of watching someone destroy a halfpipe while “Fat Lip” plays in the background, we highly recommend it.
We had no idea skunks were so prevalent in Northern California and were such huge fans of Circa Survive. As soon as Anthony Green and company ripped into “Child Of The Desert” and started throwing around giant-sized beach balls, you would have thought Pepé Le Pew was having a family reunion hosted by Cheech and Chong. (For all those innocent readers who think we’re actually talking about skunks roaming the Vans Warped Tour, bless you and your child-like spirit).
Most Nostalgic Set
For us, this is an easy one. Sunday afternoon, as soon as we heard the organ pipe intro to one of 2002′s biggest pop-punk tracks, we were immediately taken back to the days of jamming out to The All-American Rejects’ self-titled debut and their hit single “Swing, Swing.” Followed by tracks like “My Paper Heart,” “It Ends Tonight” and countless other huge radio hits like “Dirty Little Secret” and “Gives You Hell,” The All-American Rejects’ set was by far the most nostalgic.
Best Guest Appearance
Machine Gun Kelly’s appearance at the Vans Warped Tour was so shocking it took him and Yungblud two back-to-back performances of “I Think I’m Okay” for fans to finally realize it wasn’t a dream. It’s been two weeks since their set together and we’re pretty sure our ears are still ringing from all the screaming that took place that day.
Best Dressed Band
With jumpsuits, overalls, jean jackets, white pants and more, Silverstein hands-down wins the Best Dressed Band award at the Vans Warped Tour. Yes, Yungblud wore a dress but these Canadians came with that grown man style and swagger only some of us will ever get to exude. Silvertooth lives!
This is a pretty simple one. With a lineup not so centered around punishing breakdowns and wall of deaths – at least as far as the main stage goes – August Burns Red without a doubt takes the cake for the heaviest band. Wage War and Silent Planet put up a good fight but there’s just no topping these metalcore vets.
Best Use Of Shakespeare During A Set
Ah yes, Bert McCracken. Always a showman with something up his sleeve, the seasoned frontman asked the thousands and thousands of people in attendance to get a moshpit going while he gracefully and skillfully quoted some William Shakespeare. To you Bert we say, bravo.
Surprise Set Of The Weekend
When you think of the Vans Warped Tour, we’d bet Latin rock and hip-hop group Ozomatli isn’t a band that comes to mind. However, Saturday afternoon the band took the Black Craft stage and completely blew everyone away with their infectious live energy and unmatched musicianship. Who would have thought “La Gallina” would go so well with a mosh pit?
Area 51 Preparation Award
Photo by Gabriel Vargas
Another “holy shit” moment from the Vans Warped Tour was watching Frank Zummo and his fellow percussionists in Street Drum Corps take the Full Sail stage. Complete with mind-melting sirens, theremins and what we’re pretty sure was a didgeridoo, the brain-altering outfit had us 100% ready to storm the gates of Area 51 – or at least party with the aliens afterward.
Most Memorable Moment
C’mon. Do we even need to explain this one? When will there ever be another time where a headliner is running late so the other bands in attendance fill in with an impromptu supergroup karaoke session? Best. Warped. Moment. Ever. Thanks, Fat Mike.
In case all those memories weren’t nostalgic and heartwarming enough – which we’re pretty confident they were – make sure to check out our full photo review of Warped Tour Mountain View below thanks to Noise contributor Briana Bonilla.