Since its maiden voyage more than two decades ago, Vans Warped Tour has long had the reputation of being responsible for discovering “the next big thing.” Countless spectators have watched bands and artists like Katy Perry, Eminem, and Avenged Sevenfold without realizing that they were, in fact, witnessing artists who would later go on to become the gatekeepers to their respective genres.
The travelling festival’s 2017 campaign was no different, giving fans a glimpse into what might be seen as the beginning of an ascent for many of their favorite bands who have yet to hit the mainstream, like Knocked Loose, and The Dazies, as well as somewhat of a redemption for the punk and metal veterans who graced this year’s lineup, such as GWAR, Anti-Flag and Boston’s own Street Dogs.
But out of the dozens and dozens of bands that took to several stages and braved the absurd amount of rain that targeted Mansfield’s Xfinity Center on Wednesday (July 12), a few of those non-mainstream names seemed to really have that “thing” that made their fans go absolutely bonkers.
While many sets for local and brand new artists were cut short due to the weather, the experience was unlike any other, watching bands give it their all with the few precious minutes they had in the spotlight, as if this were their last performance ever. From under the canopy of the amphitheater to the Mutant South Stage placed in the back of the parking lot with nothing more than a plastic bag masquerading as a poncho to stave off the rain, droves of fans of so many different genres gathered together for what is sure to be a memorable afternoon for the Vans Warped Tour.
It was truly impossible to catch everything at Warped’s Massachusetts stop — and the numerous last-minute schedule changes because of the severe weather wreaked havoc on any pre-determined gameplan — but below are four bands that caught our attention throughout the day.
Let’s just hope for sunny skies next year.
Eyes on Satellites
Hometown quintet Eyes on Satellites held mighty court on the Crimson stage (or Crimson mud pit, depending on which side of the barricade you were standing on) with their explosive five-song set. The Boston band had the energy and heart of a stadium act, and engaged the soaked crowd as much as they could, sharing the mic at times, and other times letting the music speak for itself, all the while distracting their fans from the miserable weather as they exuded as much passion as they received from their loyal local following. Stay tuned for more on these guys — their career ahead is much brighter than the sky was over Warped Tour on Wednesday.