PHOTOS: Warped Tour takes victory lap through the Bay Area

Black Veil Brides

Black Veil Brides at Vans Warped Tour. Photos: Gary Chancer

MOUNTAIN VIEW— It’s the end of an era. Vans Warped Tour, the largest and the oldest traveling music festival in North America, ends with one last run. Since 1995, it has toured the country, helping to launch acts as diverse as Fall Out Boy, Katy Perry and Avenged Sevenfold into the mainstream. It’s so ingrained in music culture that Blink-182–another band to springboard from the Warped Tour to stardom–give it a shoutout on their 2001 single “The Rock Show.”

Founder Kevin Lyman has announced this year’s 24th edition of the Warped Tour, which passed through the Shoreline Amphitheatre Saturday, will be the last.

“Traveling around the country with a tour this size in the landscape that we’re in is; to be honest, I’m just tired,” Lyman told Billboard in 2017.

During the nu-metal fallout of the late 1990s, Warped Tour provided a haven for the emerging skate punk and pop-punk sound. One could argue about how well the loud-rock sad boys have aged compared to the jorts-wearing goons of Ozzfest, but Lyman’s brainchild would remain on the vanguard of youthful noise as it played an instrumental role in the rise of metalcore into mainstream consciousness. Influential bands like Bring Me the Horizon and Suicide Silence owe their success partly to their association with the Warped Tour circuit, just like bands from the previous era like Anti-Flag and MxPx.

While the tour tips a hat to its punk rock roots by bringing back regulars like Anti-Flag and Bad Religion throughout its run, its expanded lineup now includes include a variety of genres. The Black Eyed Peas played the festival in 1999, opening the door for acts as varied as experimental rapper Kool Keith in 2001, prog rock band Coheed and Cambria in 2003, and nerdcore pioneer MC Lars in 2013.

This year’s lineup includes Less Than Jake for the 10th time in the festival’s history, joined by other frequent tour members Reel Big Fish and Pennywise. But rather than closing the tour down with an all-star lineup, the tour included more than a dozen lesser-known acts that joined for their first time. Post-hardcore upstarts Movements now share a bill with longtime staples like Senses Fail and Chelsea Grin, providing a melting pot of every movement Warped Tour has influenced over the years.

We sent frequent Warped Tour attendee, photographer Gary Chancer, into the fray one last time to capture the sights and sounds of the final Bay Area Warped Tour show.

— Daniel J. Willis and Max Heilman

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