The Five Best and Five Worst Bands at The 2011 Vans Warped Tour

Categories: Last Night
warpedswagger.jpg
Rachel Parker
No one on the corner has swagger like Warped Tour.
In the sweltering summer sun yesterday, punk and metal fans both young and old headed to Gexa Energy Pavilion to catch the annual mass of humanity known as the Vans Warped Tour.

Out of the bands that this reporter got to witness at the kickoff to this year's summer tour, there were some good ones and some bad ones, bands leaving good impressions and some that totally blew.

Not surprisingly, it was the lesser known acts that held the day.

In that vein, let's his the jump to count down the five best, and the five worst bands, on this year's bill.

The Top Five

5. Good Guys in Black
This rather motley four-piece out of Los Angeles does the rock and rap thing without much of a clue. Yet, somehow, the blustery charm pays off as Rick Thorne leads this unattractive lot with all sorts of off-kilter rhymes that are ragged but right.

4. Shut Up and Deal
This five-piece from Connecticut rocked the small Kia Kevin Says Stage from start to finish. Playing loud pop-punk with as little pretense as possible (especially for this tour), Joe Heafy and crew displayed smarts and stage presence to spare. Best song of the set? "Dangerous," a cut that recalled the Goo Goo Dolls before they became a lame factory for power ballads.

3. Big Chocolate
A rather rotund white guy who calls himself Big Chocolate? When you play dubstep this proficiently, you can call yourself any damn thing you want.

2. Bad Rabbits
Funk and soul at Warped? Yes, it can be done. This talented five-piece from Boston proves it. Fronted by the charismatic and gifted Dua Boakye, these Rabbits garnered the attention of many who wandered by the Skullcandy Stage. Many stayed and were grateful that they did.

1. Sharks
Hailing from England, Sharks was easily the best band of the day. The foursome played in the late afternoon sun as if they were headlining. Playing old-school punk a la The Clash and The Damned, these guys are the real deal. Sharks' most recent effort is a compilation called The Joys of Living 2008-2010. Buy it.


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45 comments
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Timothy Treloar
Timothy Treloar

i thought asking alexandria was one of the best shows at our warped tour, oh and deff a skylir drive they should have been on here

Isain313
Isain313

And the top 5 are gay as hell

Isain313
Isain313

You are the gayest mother fucker that lives in this fucking planet…the devil wears prada was Freacking awesome And so was asking Alexandria And a skylit drive and what about a day to remember they are fucking cool as hell

UrAllIndieFags
UrAllIndieFags

your all Indie fags imo, stop labeling best and worst, all down to personal taste...

Fun4now112
Fun4now112

I totally disagree with almost all of you.. I'm sorry that your Pop music didn't prevail at this years Warped Tour. That "emotionalism" that you felt'.. was your balls trying to drop for the first time because you were actually listening to good music..

Cary Vibbert
Cary Vibbert

Man, how do you have a top 5 and not mention Against Me!? They play their heart out at every show and did a free acoustic set at Double wide.

brittini
brittini

Best & Worst, seriously? Who are you, or anyone, to say who is the best and the worst? There are many varieties out there and it's all a matter of personal opinion. I applaud any artist (whether I like their style or not) who is out there doing what they love doing and getting up in front of people knowing they'll be criticized by small minds like you. Shame on you.

jayzi
jayzi

So I guess the "COOL" thing is to be against the more popular bands... I am pretty tired of the "That band is getting TOO big so I don't like them" hipster mentality. Your The Worst Five list is a complete mess. You chose more obscure bands for your Top Five and more Popular well known bands for you WORST! It is your job to write your opinion and I respect that, however I do not agree!

Darryl
Darryl

actually numbers 5 and 4 were bands that played small stages to rather small crowds, number 5 especially. just like with movies and books, never trust the "popularity" of a band to be equal to how "good" it may be.

Wesley Frazier
Wesley Frazier

HOW in God's green earth are you going to state TDWP as the worst band of Warped Tour 2k11. Not only does that show your lack of knowledge musically, it's just disrespectful

Jamie
Jamie

So now we judge music based on how pretty the band looks? Interesting. What about Blood On The Dance Floor? They're far from "pretty", just like that shit they try and call music. Maybe you like their name though, so that's why they're not on the list. There For Tomorrow does not deserve to be on that list. Anyone who has ever seen them live can tell, not only how much they put into each performance, but how truly talented each member is. They may not be the biggest, well-known band, but they pour themselves into their music, in their own way, without trying to fit under some label. They have so much passion for their music and for their fans. & They are some of the nicest guys you will ever meet. But then again being a decent person and having raw talent isn't what makes up a "good" band these days is it?  All the reasons justifying all the bands on the "5 Worst Bands" are pretty bullshit in my opinion. But what do I know?  

Bigmac Tony
Bigmac Tony

Trick question. The epitome of contrived and fabricated 'counter culture.' 

Mary
Mary

You clearly don't have an ear for heavier music. Repectively, I'm not the typical person Asking Alexandria or The Devil Wears Prada would draw in, but both bands were insanely good. Biased opinions make for a bad journalist, good luck in the real world.

Alec
Alec

Thank god you aren't a real reviewer and noone actually looks at the Dallas Observer, because this review is awful. You aren't open-minded enough to understand "the emotion to be found" and you give no actual information other than your biased, shallow bullshit opinions with no relevance to the bands. Thanks

Littlekidlover
Littlekidlover

you're reading the observer blog right now, pooface. you must not like the face that stares back at you in the mirror for subscribing to something you hate. it's the same feeling i get rolling balls and listening to dubstep... i hate myself.

Noni
Noni

What on earth are you thinking? Putting 'There For Tomorrow' on the Worst 5 List. Are you deaf? Or just stupid? "This Orlando band is way too pretty." What do looks have to do with anything?  Why even put that in a review? "but little real emotion to found in these parts." Little emotion? Were you actually listening and paying attention to the lyrics? And your reviews have no substance. You don't give any real information on the bands.Please don't review ever again, you just look like an idiot.

Caleb
Caleb

And you sound like one lol solid shitlist.

Noni
Noni

Hahah your so funny. How long did it take you to think of that one?

Anyone who's seen There For Tomorrow knows that they put so much emotion into there performances and every single member is talented.

Caleb
Caleb

You know I gave it consideration and thoughT maybe i'll rethink my words. I gave the verge, and a little faster a relisten and yes their alright.

Jak
Jak

the people that think the worst 5 don't deserve to be in the worst 5 are all the people that are wrong with music today! Excellent top 5...Bad Rabbits all day!!!!

Logandavis79
Logandavis79

 Agree with your top 5....Shut Up and Deal killed it yesterday!!!

Andrewholmanjr
Andrewholmanjr

This is a god awful review. It's unprofessional to not give a certain genre or image a chance.

Punkenglish
Punkenglish

DWP always kills it, i have no idea why you think they bombed. Probably because you are a pretentious hipster prick. That being said, i agree totally with Bad Rabbits, but why the hell isnt Foxy Shazam of August Burns Red on the top 5 list? Foxy has the best live show on the planet and ABR is beast.

Disappointed.
Disappointed.

Not be rude or anything, but it seems like you don't appreciate or at least keep an open mind to the music that goes on at Warped. Especially when you decided to put There For Tomorrow as number four worst band, what the heck were you thinking? Did you even watch every band on Warped? Because looking at your lists, it seems like you were only there for the morning and then called it good. Which is terrible if you were going to even write a genuine review.

This review is one of the worst. Maybe top 6 for me. Shame.

Darryl
Darryl

I was there the entire time. just thought the best bands were in the late afternoon. there for tomorrow came on at around 5. no one can watch every band. such is impossible. get a clue.

Ted
Ted

Bad rabbits is my favorite band on the tour this year next to maybe passafire.  Glad to see someone realizes there talent. I will go look up the band sharks soon. Can't wait until they come around here in St Pete

Aj
Aj

foxy should be on there, those guys never cease to amaze me. bad rabbits are amazing too. the 5 worst are absolute shit

Nick
Nick

I'll agree with the top 5 worst, but I think I'd put August Burns Red on the top 5, they always kill it

notanoldmusiccritic
notanoldmusiccritic

WWow, I must say The Devil Wears Prada always kills it. And There For Tomorrow are actually a pretty good band compared to a lot of other bands on the tour.

Isain313
Isain313

If they would have added a day to remember and we came as Romans to the top 5 worst and called the top 5 best it would have been a good list

Fyou
Fyou

although i dont attend the warped tour anymore, due to the said horrible lineup, but the devil wears prada will always be a good show. no matter how "prefabricated" your ego thinks they are

Darryl
Darryl

Ha! Prefabricated Ego. That's a good name for a band.

Kmidniterocker78
Kmidniterocker78

Let's see:  The Sharks sound like the Clash and The Damned, thus are the "real deal."  So being a nostalgia act with a fresh face is now what constitutes good rock.  I'm out.

Darryl
Darryl

Well, let me clarify. Sharks are influenced by the Clash. They play punk without all the makeup and silly hair. They are NOT a  nostalgia act, just an unpretentious group of guys on a tour full of guys playing at being rockstars.

Kmidniterocker78
Kmidniterocker78

Eh, buddy, just listened to a few tunes on Youtube. If by influenced you mean sound, dress, and act like the Clash, then I guess that 's what it means to be influenced.  You're probably one of those people who thought Starbucks was great when it was a small-ish  business based in Seattle... and who know thinks they're the devil. If the Sharks ever do make it up the ranks, you'll be bitching about them, too; as they will then be the ones "playing at being rockstars."  Again, if this is good rock, then I'm out.  AC/DC and up the Irons, you motherfuckers!

truthseeker
truthseeker

no, i always thought starbucks sucked.

Jasminejuarez027
Jasminejuarez027

Yes.the movie is way better. I thought this years line up was awful.

Caleb
Caleb

Didn't catch but one of your top five, but agree %100 on the worst five, solid shitlist.

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