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Hayley Williams of Paramore

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By Leah Pritchett

Photos by Giselle

       I woke up to one of the sunniest mornings in the city of Miami, excited to attend the most anticipated tour of the summer, the Vans Warped Tour 2007, lucky number 13. Being the Warped Tour junkie that I am, I knew that closed shoes, shorts and a tube top were a must.

       I prepped my survival kit: a large over the shoulder purse (hands free) filled with sun block, deodorant, baby wipes, colorless lip gloss, oil free powder (every girl needs to retouch), my Sidekick to communicate with friends and get show times for each stage, and of course some ghettofab sunglasses.

       When I reached my destination I knew from past experience that I’d encounter a long line of Scene/Emo kids dressed in ridiculous outfits, like girls in tutus with enormous tacky bows on their dried out extensions and boys wearing tight jeans and an offensive amount of eyeliner.


Anthony Green of Circa Survive

       But all I could think about was the musical extravaganza I had been waiting to hear all morning. With more than 50 bands (and a shortage of female empowering ones), it was almost impossible to even catch a second of each band’s performance. But…it wasn’t all that I had come to expect. I anticipated better crowds, better bands, and less Christian-poppy music. I just wanted some old fashioned Warped Tour.

       Which I did get, to some extent. Opening things up for the Warped on the Ernie Ball Stage was a local Miami band, and close friends of mine, Spinlight City. Rayko's angelic vocals, Tony's cute little guitar melodies, and Joey's incredible drumming were surprisingly impressive. They even performed one of my favorite songs, "Role of Poison Ivy" from their self-titled EP, which had everyone clapping and chanting for more.


Dia Frampton of Meg & Dia

       Things started to falter when I saw Meg & Dia, a sister act from Utah. The girly emo-pop tunes were cliché and whiny, with songs like "Roses" and "Monsters" sounding like every other wannabe indie chick band. At least Circa Survive made up for it with their captivating performance. They played hits from their new album, On Letting Go, and previous, Juturna, propelled by Anthony Green’s soothing vocals.

       I left early to catch Anberlin at the Hurley Stage. While I was waiting, I accidentally discovered the catchiest, most adorable band I have ever heard: My American Heart. They sang songs such as "The Shake" and "Boys Grab Your Guns" from their latest album, Hiding Inside This Horrible Weather. I couldn't contain the shake of my hips to their popish rock sound. Larry Soliman, the petit 20-something front man, had the most sensational stage presence and voice.

       Once their show was over, I was finally able to hear the band I had come for: Anberlin! Vocalist Stephen Christian actually called me out from the photo pit to rock out on stage as the rest of the crowd sang along to their hits "Paperthin Hymn" from their previous album, Never Take Friendship Personal, and my all time favorite, "Godspeed" off their most recent album, Cities. They seemed like pros up there, especially since this was their first Warped Tour.

       But my high was killed once again thanks to the so called “Boston heartthrobs,” Boys Like Girls. They had a ridiculous amount of female fans, squealing and singing along to their God-awful, overrated song, "The Great Escape," and the rest of their set played out like Backstreet Boys with instruments.


Jeremy Davis of Paramore

       Grateful that the performance was over, I was ready to catch Paramore. With Hayley Williams, their tiny but confident front girl, and the rest of the male band members sporting ridiculously tight, red hot pants, they played their worshiped MTV hit, "Misery Business." Older songs "Emergency" and "Pressure" were also major hits that had me shamefully singing along.

       And the tour continued to seesaw throughout the day. Fate The Escape barely scraped by and Coheed and Cambria were extremely boring even though they’ve been playing for so long. At least it made the great performances, like New Found Glory and punk rock legends Bad Religion, that much sweeter.

       Compared to the past couple of years I’ve covered Warped Tour, this time around was a disappointment. It’s changed so much from its old punk glory days. The mix of new pop-rock with old school punk wasn’t the best idea—it was all more about dressing up like complete idiots and throwing a fashion show that wasn’t necessary. And to my dismay The Used weren’t playing Warped Tour, supposedly because front man Bert McCracken had some kind of throat surgery.

       Like every year, Warped Tour is one of the dirtiest, smelliest tours you could ever attend. As usual, it never fails that I missed the Spill Canvas set! With humid weather, sunburns, awful thunderstorms, overpriced drinks and way too many people, it is always the highlight of my summer and the anthem of today's wildest youth.

       What did you think of Warped Tour? Hit us up at outloud@outloud.com.

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