The List of Summer Music Festivals!

Every year it feels like there are more and more festivals popping up during the summer.  We’ve decided to start compiling some of them. You’ll find line-ups and ticketing prices.  The festivals listed are Rocklahoma, Rock on the Range, Lollapalooza, The Hangout Festival, Bonnaroo, Metallica’s Orion Music + More, Coachella, Rock Fest, Rock USA, Country Thunder, Country USA, and Country Fest.  At the bottom of the list of festivals are the traveling festivals such as Warped Tour, Rockstar Mayhem, UPROAR and more.

The Rock Festivals

Rocklahoma LogoRocklahoma 
May 25-27
“Catch the Fever” Festival Grounds
Pryor, OK

Who’s on the bill?

Rob Zombie, Chickenfoot featuring Joe Satriani, Kenny Aronoff (sitting in for Chad Smith), Michael Anthony & Sammy Hagar, Creed, Megadeth,Slash, Queensrÿche, Chevelle, Theory of a Deadman, Jackyl, Puddle Of Mudd, Hellyeah,P.O.D., Volbeat, 10 Years, Cavo, Adelitas Way, Black Stone Cherry, Pop Evil, Red, TheDarkness, Art of Dying, Trivium, Aranda, Redlight King, James Durbin, Janus, New Medicine, Rival Sons, Anti Mortem, Gypsy Pistoleros, Wildstreet, Firstryke, Black Tora,Sunset Riot, The Glitter Boys, Fist of Rage, Switchblade Scarlett, Krank and more. Bands will perform on the Main Stage, Second Stage and the Retrospect Records Stage.

Tickets: $99 General Admission to $325 for VIP packages (plus service fees)

Rock on the Range 2012 logoRock on the Range
May 18-20
Columbus Crew Stadium
Columbus, OH

Who’s on the bill?

Incubus, Rob Zombie, Shinedown, Marilyn Manson, Five Finger Death Punch, Slash, Megadeth, Chevelle, Cypress Hill, Mastodon, Theory of a Deadman, Volbeat, Down, The Darkness, Halestorm, Escape The Fate, P.O.D., Lacuna Coil, Adelitas Way, Black Stone Cherry, Cavo, Attack Attack!, Trivium, Bobaflex, Falling In Reverse, Redlight King, Aranda, Emphatic, Otherwise, James Durbin, Black Tide, Kyng, 12 Stones, SOiL, Rival Sons, Eve To Adam, and Ghosts of August.

Tickets: $99.50 to $134.50 (plus service fees)

More more information, go to:

Rock Fest 2012 logoRock Fest
July 19-22
Cadott, WI

Who’s on the bill?

Thursday, July 19
Buckcherry, Art of Dying, Dilana

Friday, July 20
Godsmack, Five Finger Death Punch, Hollywood Undead, Halestorm, Ten Years, Big Deeks, Life Tragic,

Saturday, July 21
Iron Maiden, Alice Cooper, Papa Roach, Adelitas Way, DoryDrive

Sunday, July 22
Def Leppard, Poison, Firehouse, Cydonia

Tickets: $77.50 General Admission to $250 VIP tickets

For more information, go to:

Rock USA logoRock USA
July 12-14
Ford Festival Park
Oshkosh, WI

Who’s on the bill?

Thursday, July 12
Shinedown, Skillet, Hinder, Skid Row

Friday, July 13
Motley Crue, Telsa

Saturday, July 14
Kid Rock, Hollywood Undead

Tickets: $79 General Admission to $99 Reserved Seating

For more information, go to:

Rockapalooza 2012 LogoRockapalooza
June 23
Jackson County Fairgrounds
Jackson, Michigan

Who’s on the bill?

Puddle of Mudd, and opening acts Saliva, Rehab, Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, and Emphatic. The second stage includes Wayne Static, Woe Is Me, Riven (formerly Motograter), Rotation, Sore Eyes, and Ghosts of August.

Tickets: $30 for General Admission to $100 VIP Tickets

More for information, go to:

The Multi-Genre Festivals

lollapalooza logoLollapalooza
August 3-5
Grant Park
Chicago, IL

Who’s on the bill?

Can we guess? Possible 2012 Headliners have been leaked sparking rumors. Metallica, Beyonce, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Killers, Beck, and Sonic Youth

Tickets: All tickets are sold-out for 2012

For more information, go to:

Summerfest 2012 logoSummerfest
June 27-July 1/July 3-July 8 (Closed Monday)
Milwaukee, WI

Who’s on the bill?

The Avett Brothers, Steve Miller Band, Common, Cake, Scorpions, Lupe Fiasco, Gary Clark Jr., Head and the Heart, Robyn, Eric Benet, Phil Vassar, Joss Stone, Awolnation, Brantley Gilbert, Tito Rojas, Gavin DeGraw, Atmosphere, Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, Halestorm, Mutemath, Fitz & The Tantrums, the Joy Formidable, LA India, Anthony Hamilton

Marcus Amphitheater headliners, thus far, include:
Big Time Rush 7/6, Iron Maiden 7/4, The Beach Boys 7/1, Zac Brown Band 7/5, Neil Diamond 7/8, Lady Antebellum 6/30

Tickets: $9 (Single Day) to $36 (3 Day Pass) for Grounds Entry and Grounds Performers. Marcus Amphitheater concerts vary in price per each artist headlining.

For more information, go to:

Pitchfork Music Festival Logo Pitchfork Music Festival
July 13-15
Union Park
Chicago, IL

Who’s on the bill?

Vampire Weekend, Feist, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Hot Chip, AraabMUZIK, A$AP Rocky, The Field, Liturgy, Kendrick Lamar, Grimes, Cloud Nothings, Tim Hecker, Willis Earl Beal

Tickets: $45 One Day Ticket to $110 for a 4 Day Pass (very limited)

For more information, go to:

Hangout Music Festival 2012 logoThe Hangout Festival
May 18-20
Gulf Shores, Alabama

Who’s on the bill?

Dave Matthews Band, Red Hot Chili Peppers,Jack White,the String Cheese Incident (performing two sets), Wilco, Skrillex, The Flaming Lips Performing Dark Side of the Moon, CHRIS CORNELL, Dispatch, Steve Winwood, STS9,Gogol Bordello, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Mac Miller, Flogging Molly,Coheed & Cambria, Paul Oakenfold, G. Love and Special Sauce,Randy Newman, Young The Giant, Dr. Dog, Cage the Elephant, Dawes, Alabama Shakes, M. Ward, YelaWolf, Switchfoot, Rebelution, Julian Marley, Zeds Dead, Mavis Staples, Shpongle, Gary Clark JR Allen Stone, Big Freedia, The Devil Makes Three, Paper Diamond, Futurebirds, Tribal Seeds, Hey Rosetta!, Sleeper Agent, THE LUMINEERS, ARCHNEMESIS, Rich Aucoin, Jamie Bergeron & the Kickin’ Cajuns

Tickets: $209 general admission (payment plan option)

For more information, go to:

Bonnaroo Music and Arts festival 2012 logoBonnaroo  Music & Arts Festival
June 7-10
Manchester, Tennessee

Who’s on the bill?


Tickets: $244.50 General Admission to $1,399.50 VIP Package (Payment Plans available)

For more information, go to:

Metallica Orion Music and More Festival LogoMetallica’s Orion Music + More
June 23-24
Bader Field
Atlantic City, New Jersey

Who’s on the bill?

Metallica, Arctic Monkeys, Avenged Sevenfold, Modest Mouse, The Gaslight Anthem, Cage The Elephant, Fucked Up, Best Coast, Hot Snakes, Titus Andronicus, Gary Clark Jr., Lucero, Roky Erickson, The Black Angels, The Sword, Liturgy …more to be announced

Tickets: $150 Early Bird General Admission to $750 VIP Tickets

For more information, go to:

Coachella logoCoachella
April 13-15 & April 20-22 
Indio, California

Who’s on the bill?

Friday, April 13, 20

Alesso, Amon Tobin,Arctic Monkeys.Atari Teenage Riot,Band of Skulls,Breakbot,Cat Power,Datsik,Dawes,Death Grips,EMA,Explosions in the Sky,Feed Me,Frank Ocean,GIRLS,GIVERS,Hello Seahorse!,honeyhoney,James,Jimmy Cliff & Tim Armstrong,Kendrick Lamar,LA Riots,M83,Madeon,Madness,Manchester Orchestra,Mazzy Star,Neon Indian,Other Lives,Pulp,R3hab,Refused,Sean Kuti & Egypt 80,Swedish,House Mafia,The Black Angels,The Black Keys,The Dear Hunter,The Horrors,The Midnight Beast,The Rapture,The Sheepdogs,Wolf Gang,WU LYF,Ximena Sarinana Yuck

Saturday, April 14, 21

A$AP Rocky,Andrew Bird,AWOLNATION,Azealia Banks,Black Lips,Bon Iver,Borgore,Buzzcocks,Childish Gambino,David Guetta,Destroyer,Destructo,Dr. Dre & Snoop Dogg,Feist,fIREHOSE,Flying Lotus,Gary Clark Jr.,Godspeed You! Black Emperor,Grace Potter and the Nocturnals,Grouplove,Jacques Lu Cont,Jeff Mangum,Kaiser Chiefs,Kasabian,Kaskade,Keep Shelly in Athens,Laura Marling,M. Ward,Martin Solveig,Miike Snow,Mt Eden,Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds,Pure Filth Sound,Radiohead,SBTRKT,SebastiAn,Squeeze,St. Vincent,Sub Focus,Suedehead,The Big Pink,The Head and the Heart,The Shins,The Vaccines,tUnE-yArDs,We are Augustines,We Were Promised Jetpacks,Zeds Dead

Sunday, April 15, 22

AraabMUZIK,At The Drive-In,AVICII,Beats Antique,Beirut,Calvin Harris,Company Flow,Dada Life,DJ Shadow,Dragonette,Fanfarlo,First Aid Kit,Fitz and the Tantrums,Florence and the Machine,Flux Pavilion & Dr. P,Gardens & Villa,Girl Talk,Gotye,Greg Ginn,Housse de Racket Justice,La Roux,Lissie,Metronomy,Modeselektor,Morgan Page,Nero,NOISI?,Oberhofer,Porter Robinson,Real Estate,SantiGold,Sebastian Ingrosso,Sleeper Agent,Spector,The Gaslamp Killer,The Growlers,The Hives,The Weeknd,Wild Beasts,Wild Flag,Zedd

Tickets: $285 to $335 General Admission tickets (Additional add-ons are available such as shuttle, tents, and camping)

For more information, go to:

The Country Festivals

Country Thunder
Florence, AZ 4/12-15
Twin Lakes, WI 7/19-22

Who’s on the bill?
Twin Lakes, WI
Thursday, July 19
Big and Rich, The Farm

Friday, July 20
Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Steve Holy, Wade Brown

Saturday, July 21
Blake Shelton…more to be announced

Sunday, July 22
Toby Keith, Brantley Gilbert, Neal McCoy, Hunter Hayes

Florence, AZ
Thursday, April 12
Dierks Bentley, Craig Morgan, Eli Young Band, Wade Brown

Friday, April 13
Big & Rich, Jake Owen, Kellie Pickler, Sawyer Brown, Steve Holy

Saturday, April 14
Blake Shelton, Thompson Square, Joe Nichols, Neal McCoy, The Farm

Sunday, April 15
Alan Jackson, The Band Perry, Phil Vassar, Brett Eldredge

Tickets: Wisconsin Tickets – $120 4-day General Admission ticket (Early Bird Special) to $350 Reserved Seating ticket
Arizona Tickets – $140 4-day General Admission ticket (Early Bird Special), $375 Reserved Seat, $500 VIP ticket

For more information, go to:
Arizona Homepage
Wisconsin Homepage

Country fest 2012 logoCountry Fest
June 21-24
Cadott, WI

Who’s on the bill?

Thursday, June 21st
Dierks Bentley, Sara Evans, Rodney Atkins, Aston Sheperd, Tim Sigler

Friday, June 22
Sugarland, Billy Currington, Easton Corbin, Chris Cagle, Brett Eldredge, Slamabama, Big Back Yard

Saturday, June 23
Brad Paisley, The Band Perry, Joe Nichols, Phil Vassar, Steve Holy, Brushfire, Madison Country

Sunday, June 24
Keith Urban, Big and Rich with Cowboy Troy, Kellie Pickler, Thompson Square, Craig Campell, Jacob Martin Band

Tickets: $82.50 General Admission to $260 Reserved Seating

For More information, go to:

Country USA logoCountry USA
June 19-23
Ford Festival Park
Oshkosh, WI

Who’s on the bill?

Tuesday, June 19
The Band Perry, Thompson Square, Pure Grain, Power Play

Wednesday, June 20
Sawyer Brown, John Michael Montgomery, John Anderson, Joe Diffie

Thursday, June 21
Sugarland, Phil Vassar, Jerrod Niemann, Lukyn Skywyrd

Friday, June 22
Brad Paisley, Lee Ann Womack, Lee Brice, Bella Cain, Broadband

Saturday, June 23

Keith Urban, Clay Walker, Tracy Lawrence, Southbound

Tickets: $89 Early Bird Price (ends 3/3) to $500 VIP Ticket

For more information, go to:

Traveling Festivals

Rockstar Mayhem Festival logoRockstar Mayhem

Who’s on the bill?

Slipknot, Slayer, Anthrax, As I Lay Dying, The Devil Wears Prada, Asking Alexandria, White Chapel, High on Fire

Tour dates:
6/30 – San Bernardino, CA – San Manuel Amphitheater
7/1 – San Francisco, CA – Shoreline Amphitheater
7/3 – Seattle, WA – White River Amphitheater
7/4 – Boise, ID – Idaho Center Amphitheater
7/6 – Phoenix, AZ – Ashley Furniture Home Store Pavilion
7/7 – Albuquerque, NM – Hard Rock Casino Albuquerque Presents The Pavilion
7/8 – Denver, CO – Comfort Dental Amphitheatre
7/10 – Dallas, TX – Gexa Energy Pavilion
7/11 – Houston, TX – Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
7/13 – Tampa, FL – 1-800-Ask-Gary Amphitheatre
7/14 – Atlanta, GA – Aaron’s Amphitheatre at Lakewood
7/15 – Indianapolis, IN – Klipsch Music Center
7/18 – Oklahoma, City, OK – Zoo Amphitheater
7/20 – St. Louis, MO – Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
7/21 – Chicago, IL – First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre
7/22 – Detroit, MI – DTE Energy Music Center
7/24 – Cincinnati, OH – Riverbend Music Center
7/25 – Cleveland, OH – Blossom Music Center
7/27 – Philadelphia, PA – Susquehanna Bank Center
7/28 – Pittsburgh, PA – First Niagara Pavilion
7/29 – Washington, DC – Jiffy Lube Live
7/31 – Saratoga Springs, NY – Saratoga Performing Arts Center
8/1 – Buffalo, NY – Darien Lake PAC
8/3 – Boston, MA – Comcast Center
8/4 – Scranton, PA – Toyota Pavilion
8/5 – Hartford, CT – The Comcast Theatre

Rockstar Uproar

Who’s on the bill?

Shinedown, Adelitas Way, New Medicine (March 27th-April 10th) and Art of Dying (April 12th-April 25th)

Tour Dates:

27 Anaheim, CA The Grove
28 San Francisco, CA The Regency Ballroom
30 Reno, NV Grand Sierra Theatre
31 Boise, ID Knitting Factory

2 Denver, CO Ogden Theatre
5 Houston, TX House of Blues
6 Dallas, TX House of Blues
7 Corpus Christi, TX Concrete Street Amphitheatre
9 Springfield, MO Shrine Mosque
10 Indianapolis, IN Egyptian Room
12 Detroit, MI The Fillmore
13 Milwaukee, WI The Rave
14 Grand Rapids, MI Orbit Room
16 Niagara Falls, NY Rapids Theater
17 Pittsburgh, PA Stage AE
18 Providence, RI Lupo’s
20 New York, NY Best Buy Theater
21 Atlantic City, NJ House of Blues
22 Scranton, PA Cultural Center
24 Richmond, VA The National
25 Baltimore, MD Ram’s Head

Vans Warped Tour 2012 LogoVans Warped Tour

Who’s on the bill?

A Loss For Words
After The Burial
Born Of Osiris
Captain Capa
Champagne Champagne
Chelsea Grin
Chunk! No Captain Chunk!
Dead Sara
Divided By Friday
Echo Movement
Every Time I Die
For Today
Funeral Party
Hyro Da Hero
I Am The Avalanche
I Fight Dragons
Impending Doom
It Boys!
Living With Lions
Lost In Society
Machine Gun Kelly
Make Do And Mend
Man Overboard
Mayday Parade
Memphis May Fire
Mighty Mongo
Motionless In White
Oh No Fiasco
Polar Bear Club
Rise To Remain
Senses Fail
Sick Of Sarah
Skip The Foreplay
Sleeping With Sirens
Super Water Sympathy
T. Mills
The Constellations
The Ghost Inside
The Green
The Silver Comet
Title Fight
Tomorrow’s Bad Seeds
Tonight Alive
Twin Atlantic
Vampires Everywhere!
We Are The In Crowd

Tour Dates:
Sat Jun 16 Salt Lake City, UT
Sun Jun 17 Denver, CO
Wed Jun 20 Las Vegas, NV
Thu Jun 21 Irvine, CA
Fri Jun 22 Pomona, CA
Sat Jun 23 San Francisco, CA
Sun Jun 24 Ventura, CA
Wed Jun 27 San Diego, CA
Thu Jun 28 Phoenix, AZ
Fri Jun 29 Las Cruces, NM
Sat Jun 30 San Antonio, TX
Sun Jul 01 Houston, TX
Tue Jul 03 Dallas, TX
Thu Jul 05 St. Louis, MO
Fri Jul 06 Detroit, MI
Sat Jul 07 Chicago, IL
Sun Jul 08 Minneapolis, MN
Mon Jul 09 Kansas City, KS
Tue Jul 10 Indianapolis, IN
Wed Jul 11 Cleveland, OH
Thu Jul 12 Pittsburgh, PA
Fri Jul 13 Toronto, ON
Sat Jul 14 Montreal, QC
Sun Jul 15 Hartford, CT
Tue Jul 17 Buffalo, NY
Wed Jul 18 Scranton, PA
Thu Jul 19 Boston, MA
Fri Jul 20 Philadelphia, PA
Sat Jul 21 New York, NY
Sun Jul 22 Oceanport, NJ
Tue Jul 24 Washington, DC
Wed Jul 25 Virginia Beach, VA
Thu Jul 26 Atlanta, GA
Fri Jul 27 Orlando, FL
Sat Jul 28 Miami, FL
Sun Jul 29 Tampa, FL
Mon Jul 30 Charlotte, NC
Tue Jul 31 Cincinnati, OH
Wed Aug 01 Milwaukee, WI
Sat Aug 04 Seattle, WA
Sun Aug 05 Portland, OR

In Photos: Winds of the Plague at Warped Tour

Winds of the Plague
Warped Tour
Marcus Amphitheater – Milwaukee, WI

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In Photos: Unwritten Law at Warped Tour

Unwritten Law
Warped Tour
Marcus Amphitheater – Milwaukee, WI

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In Photos: The Ready Set at Warped Tour

The Ready Set
Warped Tour 2011
Marcus Amphitheater – Milwaukee, WI

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In Photos: Paramore at Warped Tour

Warped Tour 2011
Marcus Amphitheater – Milwaukee, WI

Paramore Warped Tour 2011

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Hayley1

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Jeremy

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Taylor

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Hayley2

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Jeremy2

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Taylor1

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Hayley4

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Taylor2

Paramore2 Warped Tour 2011

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Hayley6

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Taylor3

Paramore3 Warped Tour 2011

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Hayley7

Paramore Warped Tour 2011 Hayley8

In Photos: Less Than Jake at Warped Tour

Less Than Jake
Warped Tour
Marcus Amphitheater – Milwaukee, WI

Less Than Jake Warp Tour 2011 JR 2

Less Than Jake Warp Tour 2011 Buddy

Less Than Jake Warp Tour 2011 Buddy2

Less Than Jake Warp Tour 2011 Chris

Less Than Jake Warp Tour 2011 Roger

Less Than Jake Warp Tour 2011 JR

Less Than Jake Warp Tour 2011 Chris3

Less Than Jake Warp Tour 2011

Less Than Jake1-HUB



Less Than Jake Warp Tour 2011 Chris4

Less Than Jake Warp Tour 2011 Chris5



August 23, 2010—Attack Attack!, the Columbus, Ohio band best known for its frenetic sound, fresh off its breakthrough performance all summer on the Vans Warped Tour and its recent #1 debut on the Independent Music Chart (which also landed at #26 on the Billboard Top 200 chart) will launch it U.S. headlining tour November 11 in Cleveland. [Read more…]

Warped Tour 2010 In Photos: Hey Monday

Hey Monday
Vans Warped tour 2010
First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre – Chicago, IL

Hey Monday is:

Cassadee Pope – Vocals
Mike Gentile – Lead Guitar
Alex Lipshaw – Rhythm Guitar
Jersey Moriarty – Bass


[Read more…]

Vans Warped Tour–Returns to Southern California–Wednesday, August 11–Pomona Fairgrounds


WHAT: VANS WARPED TOUR 2010®–the annual punk rock extravaganza that is North America’s longest-running touring festival–celebrates its sweet sixteen anniversary this year. The tour has cemented its place in history by playing a major role in bringing punk-rock/skate/action sports culture from the underground to the forefront of American youth culture, while at the same time creating awareness and taking action towards environmental and causes and helping those in need. The traveling punk rock summer camp features a diverse array of artists as well as a variety of lifestyle attractions for its traditionally low ticket price. [Read more…]

Album Review: A Rocket To The Moon ‘On Your Side’

A Rocket To The Moon
On Your Side
Fueled By Ramen
House Of Blues Chicago
Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A Rocket To The Moon has a cool sound. Fountains Of Wayne had it first, but A Rocket To The Moon has not created anything to hurt the world of recorded music. The band just kind of re-examined the musical style known to many as “alternative.” Come to think about it, I am not even sure if Fountains Of Wayne had the alternative sound first. This particular genre of light pop/punk/rock is that which has been invading the airwaves creating sing-along anthems for high school kids across the country since Green Day broke though a number of year ago in 1994.

There is nothing wrong with catchy sing-alongs that become high school anthems bringing adults back to their glory days and senior year all over again each time their graduating class song is heard. We all need a good piece of hard candy in the form of recorded audible sound waves once in a while. For the younger generation of Warped Tour attending music lovers, A Rocket To The Moon has created unpretentious songs that can be identified with. Thus making angst-ridden teens possibly feel better about their melodramatic lives via sharing in the group’s broken-hearted, unrequited-love stories. For the older fans, On Your Side is a reminder of a simpler time without the worries of bills, insurance, taxes, marriage, children, paychecks, employment, and various other adult responsibilities.

[Read more…]

Gallows “Lives Of The Artists” Trailer

Relentless energy filmed the punk rock band Gallows on Warped Tour for a 3 part film they?ve put together called ?Lives Of The Artists?. The video features live performances, interviews with the band and behind the scenes footage from one of the year’s most talked about rising stars. Check out the trailer below and prepare for the full length version to be released this October. In the meantime, head over to the bands MySpace for the latest Gallows news and non-stop tour schedule.

Tour Dates after the jump…

[Read more…]

Vans Warped Tour Announce 15th Anniversary Lineup

warped tour

The Warped Tour has announced the lineup for their 2009 caravan. They are celebrating their 15th anniversary with a lineup that combines older acts like NOFX & Less Than Jake with newer artists like Black Tide. Other prominate performers on the bill include the hard-rocking Gallows, the Ataris, Thrice, Underoath, & Bayside. If you think the bill lacks the big names of past fests, the Paramores and Gym Class Heroes of the scene, “special guests” are promised as we encounter the festival’s launch date of June 26th in Pomona, California. Enough fluf here is the full lineup as we know it!

Lineup after Jump…

[Read more…]

The Academy Is… Arrives Home Mid-Tour

The Academy Is…
House of Blues – Chicago, IL
November 6, 2008

The Academy Is... House of Blues - Chicago, ILWilliam Beckett (vocals/acoustic guitar)

Not sure about you, but I was pretty sad about the fact that Chicago’s very own The Academy Is… did not sell out the House of Blues this time around. The band was originally supposed to play three consecutive nights at the HOB (Nov. 6-8). However, after failing to sell out any of those three nights, the third and final show was canceled. The first two shows still remained, but neither of them sold out. What is up with that?! The HOB only fits about 1,300 people! I have never been to a TAI… show that has NOT been sold out. I hate to say it, but I’ll say it anyway: the boys in The Academy Is… might be losing their touch. The band, which hails from the northwest suburb of Hoffman Estates, released their third album Fast Times at Barrington High in August. The only thing is, nobody knew that a new album was even available! Where the hell was the marketing and promotions behind the new record? Not even old school fans like my friend Rikki knew about the new album being out, and let me tell you, she has seen them more than anyone I know. She’s seen The Academy Is… back in the day at Mojoe’s Coffee House in Tinley Park and the Knights of Columbus in Arlington Heights.

Frontman William Beckett performed a brand new song solo on acoustic guitar while his four bandmates waited in the wings to rejoin him with more fan favorites. Beckett told the crowd that he wrote the song just the night before on the tour bus traveling to Chicago. Only three songs from the group’s sophomore effort Santi were performed at the show: “Neighbors,” “Everything We Had,” and “We’ve Got A Big Mess On Our Hands.” I was hoping they would also play “Seed,” “LAX to O’Hare,” and my absolute favorite track off Santi “Same Blood.” But this show was apparently all about Fast Times At Barrington High. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t see how writing an album focused on high school memories is a sign of a band progressing in their musical career. The new songs just aren’t as catchy, nor memorable as the hooks found on their smash debut Almost Here.

Check out more photos of the The Academy Is… after the jump!

The Academy Is... House of Blues - Chicago, ILMike Carden (rhythm guitar)

The Academy Is... House of Blues - Chicago, ILAdam Siska (bass)

The Academy Is... House of Blues - Chicago, ILThe Butcher (drums)

The Academy Is... House of Blues - Chicago, ILMichael Guy Chislett (lead guitar)

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Angels & Airwaves Returns to Chicago Post Warped Tour

Angels & Airwaves
Allstate Arena – Rosemont, IL
October 2, 2008

Angels & Airwaves Chicago

Tom DeLonge (vocals/guitar)

Tom DeLonge and Co. landed an opening act slot on the fall Weezer tour and had to work a little bit harder each night to impress the crowd. Most of the fans in the audience for the Chicago (ok, Rosemont actually) stop on the tour were die-hard Weezer fans and didn’t like the fact that they had to wait through two bands before Weezer hit the stage. Angels & Airwaves were no longer enjoying the luxury of playing to thousands of kids who were there to see them and only them, as was the case every day they performed on Warped Tour. During the band’s set last week, I heard kids in the front against the barricade chanting “Weezer!” sporadically throughout A&A’s 45-minute set. Luckily, the fans’ yelling didn’t get much worse than that. Nothing was thrown up on stage and no obscenities were spoken. The audience was surprisingly (to me at least) respectful.

Check out more photos from the band’s performance and see which songs made their set list for the night after the jump…

[Read more…]

Anberlin Surrenders to New Album


You may have caught Anberlin on the Warped Tour this summer either on the mainstage or in MySpace’s Acoustic tent. They we out on tour to support their newest release New Surrender.

Not only can Anberlin fans catch them live, but they are hosting intimate and casual after-parties on select dates of their tour. The tour started two days ago in Houston, Texas.

Need to hear some music off New Surrender? We have your streaming music, tour dates, and parties after the jump…

[Read more…]

On the Bus with Kevin Lyman at Warped Tour Chicago

katyperrychicagowarpedtour5Usually, Kevin Lyman is the one interviewing the bands on the Warped Tour while sitting in his tour bus. Artists such as Katy Perry and Angels & Airwaves have been interviewed by Kevin while on the road this summer. Those interviews get videotaped and those videos get posted on the Warped Tour website for all to see. But when I hit up the Chicago date of Warped, I got the chance to grill Mr. Lyman and put him in the hot seat–on his own bus! The tables were turned for half an hour as I asked him all about the tradition he started 14 years ago: the Vans Warped Tour.

Read on to hear what the man had to say…sorry, no video to watch!

[Read more…]

Reel Big Fish in San Diego, California

Reel Big Fish
Cricket Wireless Amphitheater – Chula Vista, CA

Reel Big Fish Cricket Wireless Amphitheater - Chula Vista, CA 8/14/2008

I am currently sitting in the parking lot of the Cricket Wireless where I was on the 14th for Warped Tour. I am sitting here waiting for Dave Matthews to be over so I can hightail it out of the crazy parking lot. If you have ever been to the Cricket in Chula Vista, CA you know what I am talking about.

Enjoy the pictures of Reel Big Fish from their Warped Tour performance. They performed quite a few covers that included Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” to A-ha’s “Take on Me.” There antics onstage are quite entertaining and amusing. They talked about the crowd getting in their pants and played off that which seemed unscripted.

They of course played their big hits and started off the set with “Sell-Out.” If you can’t tell by the pictures, the show was a blast. These guys are fun and flamboyant and I’ll be seeing them again.

Photos of Reel Big Fish at San Diego Warped Tour:

Tour Dates:

Sep 18 2008 6:00P Vancouver, BC – Commodore Ballroom Vancouver
Sep 20 2008 6:00P Calgary, ALB – MacEwen Hall ballroom, Calgary
Sep 21 2008 8:00P Edmonton, AB – Edmonton Events Center Edmonton
Sep 22 2008 6:00P Regina, SK – the Distrikt Regina
Sep 23 2008 6:00P Winnipeg, MB – the Garrick Center Winnipeg
Sep 24 2008 6:00P Thunder Bay, Ontario , Canada- The Outpost Thunder Bay, Ontario
Sep 26 2008 6:00P Torronto, ON – Sound Accademy Torronto
Sep 27 2008 6:00P Montreal, QC – Club Soda Montreal
Oct 30 2008 6:00P Sao Paulo, Brazil – Via Funchal Sao Paulo
Oct 31 2008 6:00P Curitiba, Brazil – Espaco Calas Curitiba
Nov 1 2008 6:00P Buenos Aires, Argentina – El Teatro Flores Buenos Aires
Nov 2 2008 6:00P Santiago de Chile, Chile – Caupolican Santiago

Motion City Soundtrack at the San Diego Warped Tour

Motion City Soundtrack @ Warped Tour 2008
Cricket Wireless Amphitheater – Chula Vista, CA

Motion City Soundtrack @ Warped Tour 2008 Cricket Wireless Amphitheater - Chula Vista, CA 8/14/2008

Here are some pictures from Motion City Soundtrack from the San Diego stop of the Warped Tour 2008.

Check out the review and pics from their stop in Chicago at the Honda Civic Tour and their show at the  House of Blues last December.

Photos of Motion City Soundtrack at Warped Tour in San Diego:

Panima and the Interview with David McCann

Panima – Warped Tour 2008 San Diego
Cricket Wireless Amphitheater – Chula Vista

Ernie Ball Stage

David – Vocals
Steven – Guitar
Justin -Guitar/ Vocals
Raul – Drums
Davith -Bass/Vocals

Panima - Warped Tour 2008 San Diego Cricket Wireless Amphitheater - Chula Vista 8/14/2008

While walking around Warped Tour, we were getting inundated with bands and band managers trying to get us to see their band or do an interview.  I was even grabbed by the arm by one manager, but I was off to see Motion City Soundtrack. On the other end of the spectrum, it is great to run into bands that we’ve met before. David from Panima is one of those guys. My apologies because most know him as “Fro”. If I have to explain that, you aren’t looking at the pictures.

Panima hails from Riverside, California, not too far from The Dead Hub Headquarters. The word around Southern California is if these guys keep busy pushing they way they are, Panima will be the next big band to come out of Riverside. What other band had great success that came from Riverside? Alien Ant Farm.

Warped Tour started a contest via Myspace where fans voted who would play Warped Tour.  Panima won a slot on the Ernie Ball Stage, thanks to all the fan voting!

We met up with David for a couple minutes before they hit the Ernie Ball stage at 7:15pm.

Panima - Warped Tour 2008 San Diego Cricket Wireless Amphitheater - Chula Vista 8/14/2008

Jessica: How is Warped Tour treating you?

David: Really Well! It’s fun but really hard. It’s hard because there is a lot to it. We set up around 7a.m. then pack up around 10p.m. We don’t get much sleep.

J: Have you played or jammed with any other bands on the tour yet?

D: I sing on stage with Greeley Estates (Hurley Stage) now and then.

J: What’s your favorite part of being on Warped Tour?

D: I wake up in a new state every day. Also, getting to travel the entire United States and see places that I have never seen before.

J: What are your plans after Warped Tour wraps up?

D: Chill! Hanging with the family. Then we are touring again starting in October.

J: What is the newest album Panima has out now?

D: Take Cover which is actually an EP.

Band Pictures/ Click on thumbnails to enlarge picture:

Cobra Starship and a Shot in the Ass

Cobra Starship
Cricket Wireless Amphitheater – Chula Vista, CA

Gabe Saporta – Vocals
Ryland Blackinton – Guitar
Alex Suarez – Bass
Nate Novarro – Drums
Victoria Asher – Keytar

Cobra Starship Cricket Wireless Amphitheater - Chula Vista, CA 8/14/2008

Gabe Saporta

Thursday was my first Cobra Starship experience. I was greeted by the 80’s looking Cobra Starship sign that didn’t read Cobra Starship to me. That was probably because I was extremely dehydrated from walking around Warped Tour and refusing to pay high prices for water. I had to have someone tell me that the Highway 1 stage, one of the mainstages, did in fact have Cobra Starship up next. I don’t know about anybody else, but stage signs weren’t clearly marked with the stage names, especially on the smaller stages. Anybody else notice that?

Gabe Saporta, the frontman, mentioned during the first couple songs of the set that he wasn’t feeling well and he actually had to take meds that the doctor said would make him feel better. He said that there was one problem with the meds. They had to be taken via a syringe in his butt. He then described the welt that was around the entry point of the needle that was injected into his butt. Normally I would be screaming “Too much information!” but this was hilarious. He commented, “I lost my voice but my ass looks great!” The band played on.

Cobra Starship Cricket Wireless Amphitheater - Chula Vista, CA 8/14/2008Victoria Asher

Cobra Starship Cricket Wireless Amphitheater - Chula Vista, CA 8/14/2008Ryland Blackinton

Overall, the band was in great spirits minus the illness going around. Everybody was into them because they started with one of my favorites, Send My Love to the Dance Floor. They had the entire 2-mile radius crowd moving and grooving! The spirit and energy of the band was crazy. I enjoyed their set the most at this years Warped Tour.  Of course, I couldn’t stay for the entire set because it conflicted with another band I wanted to see on a stage that took 10 minutes to walk to.

They are out on tour supporting their newest release Vida Cobra! This band is one very busy band! If you get the chance to catch them as they roll through your town, get your 80’s gear on and go!

Cobra Starship Cricket Wireless Amphitheater - Chula Vista, CA 8/14/2008Tour Dates

Aug 20 2008 8:00P
Brisbane Entertainment Centre Brisbane, AUS

Aug 22 2008 8:00P
Acer Arena Sydney, AUS

Aug 23 2008 8:00P
Rod Laver Arena Melbourne, AUS

Aug 25 2008 8:00P
Adelaide Entertainment Centre Adelaide, AUS

Aug 27 2008 8:00P
Burswood Dome Perth, AUS

Aug 30 2008 8:00P
Vector Arena Auckland, NZ

Sep 1 2008 8:00P
Quattro Osaka, JPN

Sep 3 2008 8:00P

Oct 7 2008 8:00P
Club Infinity Buffalo, NY

Oct 8 2008 8:00P
Webster Hartford, CT

Oct 9 2008 8:00P
Trocadero Philadelphia, PA

Oct 10 2008 8:00P
Casino Hampton Beach, NH

Oct 11 2008 8:00P
Nokia New York, NY

Oct 12 2008 8:00P
House of Blues Cleveland, OH

Oct 14 2008 8:00P
Majestic Detroit, MI

Oct 15 2008 8:00P
HOB Chicago, IL

Oct 16 2008 8:00P
Cabooze Minneapolis, MN

Oct 17 2008 8:00P
The Rave Milwaukee, WI

Cobra Starship Cricket Wireless Amphitheater - Chula Vista, CA 8/14/2008 Oct 18 2008 8:00P
Pops St. Louis, MO

Oct 19 2008 8:00P
Beaumont Kansas City, MO

Oct 20 2008 8:00P
Gothic Theatre Denver, CO

Oct 21 2008 8:00P
Avalon Salt Lake City, UT

Oct 23 2008 8:00P
Croation Vancouver, BC

Oct 24 2008 8:00P
Wonder Ballroom Portland, Oregon

Oct 25 2008 8:00P
El Corazon Seattle, Washington

Oct 26 2008 8:00P
Knitting Factory – Boise Boise, Idaho

Oct 28 2008 8:00P
Empire Event Center Sacramento, CA

Oct 29 2008 8:00P
The Fillmore San Francisco, CA

Oct 30 2008 8:00P
House of Blues Los Angeles, CA

Oct 31 2008 8:00P
Jillian’s Las Vegas, NV

Nov 1 2008 8:00P
House of Blues Anaheim, CA

Nov 2 2008 8:00P
House of Blues San Diego, CA

Nov 4 2008 8:00P
Marquee Phoenix, AZ

Nov 5 2008 8:00P
Club 101 El Paso, TX

Nov 6 2008 8:00P
Cains Tulsa, OK

Nov 7 2008 8:00P
House of Blues Dallas, TX

Nov 8 2008 8:00P
Scout Bar San Antonio, TX

Cobra Starship Cricket Wireless Amphitheater - Chula Vista, CA 8/14/2008 Nov 9 2008 8:00P
House of Blues Houston, TX

Nov 11 2008 8:00P
Jannus Landing St. Petersburg, FL

Nov 12 2008 8:00P
Revolution Ft. Lauderdale, FL

Nov 13 2008 8:00P
House of Blues Orlando, FL

Nov 14 2008 8:00P
Masquerade Atlanta, GA

Nov 15 2008 8:00P
Music Farm Charleston, SC

Nov 16 2008 8:00P
Tremont Charlotte, NC

Nov 18 2008 8:00P
The National Richmond, VA

Nov 19 2008 8:00P
Sonar Baltimore, MD

Nov 20 2008 8:00P
Starland Sayreville, NJ

Nov 21 2008 8:00P
Gravity Pittsburgh, PA

Nov 22 2008 8:00P
Bogart’s Cincinnati, OH

Nov 23 2008 8:00P
Intersection Grand Rapids, MI

Nov 25 2008 8:00P
Opera House Toronto, ON

Nov 26 2008 8:00P
Club Soda Montreal, QC

Nov 28 2008 8:00P
Lupos Providence, RI

Nov 29 2008 8:00P
Crocodile Rock Allentown, PA

Nov 30 2008 8:00P
Northern Lights Albany, NY

Jan 28 2009 8:00P
Academy 2 Birmingham, UK

Jan 29 2009 8:00P
Garage Glasgow, Sco

Jan 30 2009 8:00P
Club Academy Manchester, UK

Jan 31 2009 8:00P
Cockpit Leeds, UK

Feb 1 2009 8:00P
Rock City – The Basement Nottingham, UK

Feb 2 2009 8:00P
KCLSU London, UK

Weekly Plug 8/10 to 8/16

Linkin Park irvine projekt revolution 6This week was crazy from a concert standpoint. It also took 3 pages of the Dead Hub in articles and video. We had coverage from Linkin Park, Chris Cornell, The Bravery, Ashes Divide, Street Drum Corps, Armor for Sleep, Hawthorne Heights, Katy Perry at Warped Tour, Atreyu, and 10 Years. Plus videos from Slipknot, Underoath, and Machine Head.

Chicago hit northern Illinois at Blarney’s Island with Howard Livingston and We are Scientists at the Abbey Pub in Chicago. Plus from Warped Tour Against Me!, Angels & Airwaves, and Anberlin .

This week we’ll have more interviews from Warped Tour Chicago and San Diego.

More Videos and interview from the Rockstar Mayhem and the Stranze Tour.

Shows: Brendan James and Kate Voegele. We love Kate! We have covered her many of times before at the Abbey and House of Blues.

Remember to search for your favorite artists in the Search Bar on the right hand side of your screen.

Anberlin and Adelaide at Vans Warped Tour

Anberlin @ Vans Warped Tour
First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre – Tinley Park, IL
August 2, 2008

Anberlin @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILStephen Christian – Vocals

Anberlin played my favorite song of theirs, Adelaide, at Chicago’s Warped Tour! I cannot even tell you how HAPPY I was when lead singer Stephen Christian announced that the next song they would be performing was a little song called Adelaide!!! In case you are wondering why I was so pumped about this, it is because this was the first time I had ever seen Anberlin, one of my favorite bands, perform this song live. I have seen this band every time they’ve played Chicago since June 2006 and this was the first time I’ve gotten to hear and see them play Adelaide. PLEASE check out the song if you have never heard it. It is truly a gem of theirs. Keep reading to check out more photos from Anberlin’s set at Chicago Warped Tour…

Anberlin @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILChristian McAlhaney – Guitar

Anberlin also announced to the crowd that they have a new record (their 4th) coming out on September 30 entitled New Surrender AND they will be headlining a U.S. tour this fall! I already looked up the Chicago date and marked my calendar. The band will be at our House of Blues on Tuesday, October 21 and you know I’ll be there. If you missed Anberlin on this summer’s Warped Tour, PLEASE check them out in a couple of months when they come back. They will be headlining, so their set should be an hour long! That gives the band plenty of time to play all of my favorites. So stoked!

Anberlin @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILJoeseph (Joey) Milligan – Guitar

One of the things I love about this band is that they have a lead singer, Stephen, who is CONSTANTLY moving around and trying to get the crowd riled up and dancing along. I hate it when a singer (who doesn’t have to play an instrument at the same time) just stands there doing nothing! It is so not entertaining and hardly any fun at all for an audience member. Without a hyper frontman, there is one less thing to look at besides the other band members who are playing their instruments. On the other hand, I wanted Stephen to just STAND STILL for five seconds so that I could get some good shots of him! I am amazed that not all of my photos turned out blurry from his movement. Anyway, some songs Anberlin played last weekend at Warped included:

A Day Late

Paperthin Hymn



The Feel Good Drag

Dismantle. Repair.

Time & Confusion

The 2008 Vans Warped Tour would not have been possible without the help of Guitar Center, so thank you GC! Guitar Center hit the road with the Vans Warped Tour, activating two programs designed to provide the artists on the tour with support-based tools that improve their chances for success as pro musicians: theGC Web Lab and the GC Axe Smith.

Anberlin @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILDeon Rexroat – Bass Guitar

The Guitar Center Web Lab, a custom 32? climate controlled internet trailer, provides bands and their crew exclusive access to a backstage wireless web center. Complete with top of the line Apple computers, satellite-based broadband internet connections, design based software and a knowledgeable rep, Guitar Center’s mission is to provide Warped Tour artists/bands with the tools they need to maintain their online worlds when they are on the road : a service that is especially needed since web access is severely restricted in many of the rural areas where the Warped Tour touches down.

Anberlin @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILNathan Young – Drums

Guitar Center is also proud to provide all bands on the Vans Warped Tour with an onsite professional guitar tech, a.k.a. the “GC Axe Smith”. The GC Axe Smith is where Vans Warped Tour guitarists and bassists come to get their instruments tuned, repaired and ready to rock. From complete set-ups and minor repairs to intonation and truss-rod adjustments, this service is 100% FREE to the artists, underscoring Guitar Center’s commitment to helping Warped bands make the best music possible.

In addition, Guitar Center will serve as the exclusive, presenting sponsor of the Vans Warped Tour video blog. Utilizing the Web Lab as the blogging home base, a GC video reporter will use and include the Web Lab in video content as well as conduct artist interviews within the lab’s “testimonial” set-up. Our onsite Warped rep will also produce weekly video content with artists, conducting musician-centric interviews, how-to videos and more.

Check out the GC Axe Smith and Web Lab @ Warped Tour:

Check out the GC Axe Smith on Austin TV:

Click on thumbnails of Anberlin to enlarge photos:

The Academy Is… Heads Back to High School w/ New Album

The Academy Is… @ Vans Warped Tour
First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre – Tinley Park, IL

The Academy Is... @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILWilliam Beckett – Vocals

Apparently, The Academy Is… has a brand new album coming out August 19th entitled Fast Times at Barrington High. Not sure about you, but I had NO IDEA they even were anywhere close to releasing a new record. I literally found out about it from seeing all the posters plastered everywhere at the Chicago stop of the 2008 Vans Warped Tour. Also, the band – who hails from Chicago (well, the suburbs) – has a new single out there called About A Girl. Who knew? It is definitely NOT being played on terrestrial radio, which is how I usually hear a band’s new song. I was dumbfounded by how unaware I was of the new music that is already out there from one of my favorite bands. Oh well, now I know – and so do you! Keep reading to see more photos from TAI’s Warped Tour set last weekend…

The Academy Is... @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILMike Carden – Guitar/Vocals

I proceeded to ask two friends of mine (Katie and Yvette) holding their spots on the barricade what About A Girl sounded like since I had not heard it yet. They looked at me with questionable faces and admitted they just weren’t that into the new track. “They sound just like Boys Like Girls now,” my friend Katie told me, obviously disappointed in the song. And when TAI performed it halfway through their set, I couldn’t help thinking to myself, “Yup, Katie was right. Just like Boys Like Girls.” Don’t get me wrong, I have attended many a Boys Like Girls concert and had fun. But man, oh man, besides their big hit The Great Escape, all of their songs are so BORING – BLAHH. I was not too keen on the band’s last album either (Santi). The songwriting is just so different and the songs are not nearly as catchy. Almost Here is golden – I LOVE every song and can listen to the entire record without skipping over songs, which hardly happens these days.

The Academy Is... @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILMichael Guy Chislett – Guitar

I couldn’t help but feel somewhat let down with the band’s new material. I own the previous two studio albums, but I’m not even sure if this new one is going to be something I invest in. Lead singer William Beckett’s voice cracked a few times during the chorus and I found myself waiting for the song to be over almost as soon as it started! That rarely EVER happens to me when I am watching a favorite band of mine perform. Whatever though, I still had a blast rocking out to their older songs that I still LOVE to sing along to!

The Academy Is... @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, IL

Adam T. Siska – Bass

Obviously, The Academy Is… would not be on the Warped Tour if the tour was not happening in the first place this summer. We can thank Guitar Center for making sure that the Vans Warped Tour is just about to conclude its 14th year of being one of the most successful summer tours yet again. Guitar Center hit the road with the Vans Warped Tour, activating two programs designed to provide the artists on the tour with support-based tools that improve their chances for success as pro musicians: the GC Web Lab and the GC Axe Smith. Here is some information about the GC Web Lab and the GC Axe Smith helping to keep the Warped Tour up and running…

The Academy Is... @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILThe Butcher (Andy Mrotek) – Drums

The Guitar Center Web Lab, a custom 32? climate controlled internet trailer, provides bands and their crew exclusive access to a backstage wireless web center. Complete with top of the line Apple computers, a satellite-based broadband internet connections, design based software and a knowledgeable rep, Guitar Center’s mission is to provide Warped Tour artists/bands with the tools they need to maintain their online worlds when they are on the road : a service that is especially needed since web access is severely restricted in many of the rural areas where the Warped Tour touches down.

The Academy Is... @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILGuitar Center is also proud to provide all bands on the Vans Warped Tour with an onsite professional guitar tech, a.k.a. the “GC Axe Smith”. The GC Axe Smith is where Vans Warped Tour guitarists and bassists come to get their instruments tuned, repaired and ready to rock. From complete set-ups and minor repairs to intonation and truss-rod adjustments, this service is 100% FREE to the artists, underscoring Guitar Center’s commitment to helping Warped bands make the best music possible.

The Academy Is... @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILIn addition, Guitar Center will serve as the exclusive, presenting sponsor of the Vans Warped Tour video blog. Utilizing the Web Lab as the blogging home base, a GC video reporter will use and include the Web Lab in video content as well as conduct artist interviews within the lab’s “testimonial” set-up. Our onsite Warped rep will also produce weekly video content with artists, conducting musician-centric interviews, how-to videos and more.

The Academy Is... @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILCheck out the GC Axe Smith and Web Lab @ Warped Tour:

Check out the GC Axe Smith on Austin TV:

The Academy Is... @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, ILEven with the let down of new single About A Girl from the band’s upcoming album, Fast Times At Barrington High, I still enjoyed The Academy Is… and their headlining set. I was hoping that TAI’s new material would show progress in the band’s songwriting, but I can’t help feeling like it only got worse…take a listen and decided for yourself. Here are some of the songs they performed at Chicago’s Warped stop:


About A Girl

We’ve Got A Big Mess On Our Hands

Slow Down



The Academy Is... @ Vans Warped Tour First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre - Tinley Park, IL

Grabbing a Moment with Tim McTague of Underoath

Rockstar Mayhem 2008
Cricket Wireless – Chula Vista, CA

Stage: Hot Topic @ 6:25pm (The times rotate at each Mayhem stop)

Aaron Gillespie – Drums/Vocals
Tim McTague – Lead Guitar/Backing Vocals
Spencer Chamberlain – Vocals
James Smith – Rhythm Guitar
Christopher Dudley – Keyboards/Synthesizers
Grant Brandell – Bass

Underoath san diego 13

Tim McTague

I caught up with lead guitarist Tim McTague to talk about life on Mayhem and touring. Underoath previously toured on Van’s Warped Tour, so right off the bat I asked how the Mayhem tour has been treating them. Tim says that it’s great with all new bands and meeting new fans. Underoath hasn’t jammed with any other bands on the Mayhem tour, but if he had the chance, Tim would like to jam with Chris Walla, Omar (Mars Volta), or Jim Atkins from Jimmy Eats World.

[Read more…]

Emailing with The Pink Spiders

After two failed attempts at a phoner (phone interview for those not in the know) with Matt Friction from The Pink Spiders, I finally got to interview him via the wonderful form of electronic communication known as email. I have to admit, I was hoping for some lengthier responses from the band’s lead singer and guitarist, but I will take what I can get. This was my first time having to interview an artist via email and let me tell you: it is very hard to get someone to answer your questions when they are hundreds of miles away from you and have the option of simply not typing up an answer to your question. So when you get your questions back, a lot of them will be blank. Oh well.

I am still going to their concert tomorrow night – Friday, June 27th – at Reggies Rock Club on the Southside of Chicago. The band is in town while on the road for The Tapped Kegs, Spread Legs and Fertilized Eggs Tour with special guests Drive-By. I have never seen the band perform live, but have only heard good things from friends who have attended every Chicago show The Pink Spiders have played in the past couple of years. Keep reading to see what Matt had to say – I mean type…

[Read more…]

Party Like It’s 1997

NYC Photo

Not sure about you, but I think that if you get booked to perform at your city’s Apple Store, then you have pretty much made it in the music business. Chicago’s very own 1997 played a gig downtown a couple weekends ago and I was there to witness it and cheer them on. I think it’s safe to say that the show was a success and sold out. Almost every seat was taken upstairs and there were people standing all around, checking out the FREE acoustic concert by their hometown heroes. After the show, I got the chance to sit down with Alida Marroni (Keys, Vocals) and Alan Goffinski (Bass, BGV) where we discussed everything from Victory Records to Sex and the City (the movie!).


With two studio albums to choose from (plus short Warped Tour sets), how do you pick songs for your Warped sets?

Alida: Basically, we were talking about it and we are just going to play the catchiest, loudest, fastest stuff that we have. What do we have? I think two songs from the old album and three songs from the new album.
Alan: Something like that.
Alida: We’re going to play five songs that are as catchy as possible. Just to grab people’s attention, you know? As they’re walking by…
Alan: Part of it is standing out in the deluge of music. There’s just so much going on. Just trying to make sure that at any possible moment, someone passing by might hear something that they like and just stick around for awhile. Pick up a new fan. Don’t want to play too much quiet stuff either because it will get drowned out by the stage next to us.

You said during the show that Caleb (Caleb Pepp – Guitar, Vocals) made the set list for today. Does that always happen?

Alan: Caleb loves lists. He loves making lists of all shapes and sizes. For anything. So it’s usually he’ll make a list and we’ll go over it and say maybe not…
Alida: Maybe open with this one instead and end with this one instead.
Alan: He’s no novice. He knows how to make a good list. He’s been making mix tapes since he knew how to press record on a tape deck.

Some bands already have their next record written right when their latest album is coming out. Are there new unrecorded songs that you will be playing?

Alan: No.
Alida: We’ve got a couple that we didn’t record for this album. But we are pretty much going to designate a few months to devoting our time to writing before we record the next album. And unlike a lot of bands, I think we’re just going to soak this album up for awhile. I don’t know, Caleb’s always writing. And he’s really excited to be constantly making new material. It just depends…
Alan: We don’t like to sit too long. I don’t know how many of the B-sides from the last album would make it onto the new album. I doubt any would, but who knows? We’re always writing. We’re always coming up with new stuff that just ends up kind of laying fallow for awhile until we have a chance to sit down and make sense of it all. Spend a couple months just working out the kinks of it.

Does anything prevent you from playing different sets every night? On Warped Tour will you play the same set of songs every day?

Alida: We can change it up. I mean, our boredom is the only thing that I can think of that would prevent us from doing that.
Alan: As much as we always try to find a set that works and stick with it, we are always changing it.
Alida: When we tour, we’ll play a different set – we’ll play at least five sets in a tour.
Alan: We switch it up a lot.
Alida: And it’s more fun for the people that come to see us a couple dates in a row. It’s cool to not have to see the same show twice.

What have you noticed about crowds at recent 1997 shows?

Alida: Well, I want to talk about our CD release show that we had two nights ago. It was a really good time. It was the first time that I had ever seen people – a really big group of people – singing along to the new songs. That felt awesome because this is the first album that I’m on, so I was really excited about that. But more and more, as we keep visiting the same cities, kids are more and more perceptive, intense and awesome.
Alan: Numbers are increasing.
Alida: Yeah, it’s great. It only gets better.
Alan: We accidentally played our first headlining tour – just got off of it. When I say accidentally, I mean that it was supposed to be a co-headlining tour, but the co-headliners dropped off the tour, so we wound up headlining. We were a little nervous at first, but we surprised ourselves.
Alida: It went pretty well. We sold out a couple too. It was cool.
Alan: Yeah, big numbers.

Do you plan your sets differently when playing in your hometown of Chicago?

Alan: Yeah, we do.
Alida: Our Chicago kids have songs that they just need to hear. So we like to do that for them.
Alan: We take into consideration the fact that when we play Chicago, we are playing to a lot of family and friends. We try and play everyone’s favorites.

How much do you rehearse for a tour?

Alida: When we have a practice space, we practice every day.
Alan: We got out of the studio and we learned all the material again because everything changes when you record it. New parts get added, guitar parts change slightly. Gotta relearn everything – we spent several weeks doing that. And then once we’re comfortable with that, then it’s smooth sailing.
Alida: Every show is a practice, really.

What’s on 1997’s rider?

Alida: The funny thing is – do we even have a rider? I don’t know. I don’t think we’re cool enough to have a rider yet.
Alan: Interestingly enough, we do have a rider. But it’s just like a default rider that our booking agent put together. I don’t think we ever asked for anything, but she asked for things on our behalf – like to include several cases of beer. And only a few of us are of legal age to even drink, which is really interesting. Venues complain about that sometimes. When we have a rider and when venues decide to fulfill the rider requirements, which they rarely do anyway at this stage in the game, it’s just going to be the basics.

Anything you would want to have on your rider?

Alida: It’s going to be a few years before we’re playing arenas and I can request a masseuse, but I’ve got awhile to think about it.
Alan: The only thing I really crave ever, on a constant basis, is cheese and ice cream.
Alida: Yeah, we’ll have a lot of ice cream, probably.
Alan: But who knows? I don’t care. I’m just there to play music.

How are you planning to change things for this summer’s Warped Tour to make your live show different from past tours? Any audience interaction?

Alan: As far as stage performance goes, it’s just gonna be go, go, go. Let’s make sure we can cram all the songs we want to play into a short set. Speak briefly; say your name in between every song.
Alida: Yeah, so people always know who you are.
Alan: Say your name in the middle of a song if you have to.
Alida: “We’re 1997! Here’s the cool bridge to this song!” Just exert all of our energy into those 20 minutes. Hopefully, get some kids to come over to the merch tent.

Did you ever go to Warped as a fan?

Alida: Hell yeah, I’ve been going to Warped since I was 13 years old.
Alan: Alida happens to be the only one in the band who has ever been to Warped Tour.
Alida: It’s so funny. None of them ever go. They always go to Cornerstone and stuff like that; festivals that are going around at the same time. Dude, I love Warped Tour. That’s a huge part of my middle school and high school experience. I’m bummed we don’t get to play the Chicago date. Our booking agent couldn’t get us on that date. Dude, Warped Tour is awesome, and I can’t wait to play it – I cannot wait to see how different it is as a musician. I’m sure it’s so much rougher, but I think it’s going to be a great time. And obviously, I’m going to be a fan the rest of the day, so I’m going to be just watching as many bands as I can. We already have a list of all the bands we want to see.

When you’re in the studio, do you think about how the songs will sound live?

Alan: Probably somewhat. I think we naturally write songs that sound good live. I don’t think it’s a conscious thing. I think that subconsciously we know that songs need to have energy. We write energetic songs that have dynamics to them. If you can do that, no matter what style of music you play, no matter what genre or type of kid you’re playing to as your primary audience, it’ll come through well live.

What do you do on the road to relax?

Alida: I write in my journal and whenever we get to venues, I always give myself a half hour before we play to just be alone and warm up.
Alan: We skate a lot. We enjoy dumpster diving – sometimes for fun, sometimes out of necessity. We like to hang out with fans at the shows.
Alida: There are house parties that we’ll go to after shows all the time. We just spend a lot of time in the van. There’s a lot of listening to music, driving around. They play hacky-sack at rest stops. I don’t play hacky-sack. I don’t want to play hacky-sack.
Alan: That’s a new development – hacky-sack. It’s a really good way to stretch our legs at every gas station. Everyone comes out and kicks the sack around for awhile.

How is the Warped Tour going to be different from other multi-act tours and festivals you’ve played?

Alan: Who knows? Tell me!
Alida: We’re excited to find that out, but I’m sure it’s gonna be way more intense and a lot hotter.
Alan: I hear it’s just like regular tour on speed. It’s just high impact, high energy.
Alida: No sleep. Long drives, really hot. But we’re so psyched.
Alan: No sleep. It’s going to be hell and we’re psyched for it.


What challenges, if any, did you face putting the album together?

Alan: There were some illnesses in the studio that inhibited some voices for awhile. A big challenge is making sure everyone’s on the same page: the band, the label, management. Just to make sure everything runs smoothly and all promotion is running on all four cylinders when the album hits and well into the first several months.
Alida: We want to make sure we have enough time to produce the best songs that we can in the month that we’re allotted to be in that studio. There’s a lot of prioritizing towards the end and deciding what needs more attention. There’s crunch time for sure. It’s all worth it and we’re happy with how it turned out.
Alan: Neither of the albums we’ve recorded is in our opinion, a perfect album. There’s always stuff that we feel like we wished we could’ve spent more time on. We try and do the best with the time that we have – the time that the label is buying for us. We think we do a really good job with it and we’re really proud of what we’ve managed to do. But by no means do we think that they’re perfect.

What is your songwriting process?

Alan: Caleb is the backbone. He is the guitarist and comes with a bag of tricks – a big sack of goodies – a big bag of riffs and we all sit down behind our instruments and try to make sense of them. Try and basically sort out Caleb’s mind. For this last album, we wrote all the music first. Well, not necessarily all of it. The majority of it was all written on guitar first. Maybe a hook, a melody, had a couple words written to it. Then the four of us – me, Alida, Kevin and Caleb – all put in effort as far as lyrical content.

How would you categorize your music?

Alida: I just call it indie rock.
Alan: We try not to because it’s always harder to categorize your own music than it is someone else’s. We try and let other people do it for us. But I think generally, people just consider it indie rock – indie rock with folk undertones. Certainly, there are some pop elements to it. It’s listenable, it’s catchy.

What makes your album stand out from some of the rest?

Alida: I think that our whole three-part harmony thing sets us apart from quite a few bands.
Alan: Also, I think that part of it is the fact that we don’t really subscribe to the whole emo-band indie image. We’re not trying to snap into a mold, like fit a grid or anything like that. We’re just trying to write music that makes sense in our minds and in our hearts. When you do that, you can avoid having the cookie-cutter, trendy image.
Alida: We acquire whatever fans want to listen to us – whatever demographic responds to what we are making. It’s not really aimed at this group of kids or anything like that.
Alan: Rather than just subscribing to a genre and then trying to fit the mold, we’d rather just sort of make our own mold and see who bites.

What are some of your favorite bands? Who would you like to tour with? Open for? Write songs with?

Alida: I want to play with Eisley and Rilo Kiley.
Alan: I want to play with Jimmy Eat World.
Alida: So do I.
Alan: We’re all about touring with any band that will expose us to more kids. The more people that we can have singing, yelling, screaming and dancing along at out concerts, the more fun it is.

How has your life changed since signing a deal with Victory Records – the world’s largest independent record label?

Alan: When you get signed to a big, important label, things get handled differently. You have a constant interaction with a whole family of people over there. You have to make sure that they are on top of their game and know what you want. And you have to know what they want from you. Luckily, we are a Chicago band and they’re a Chicago label and we have good lines of communication with them. They come to all of our shows in the city. They like us as people – they’re our friends. A lot of them are good friends of ours. So that’s really convenient and a really good feeling to know that they’re on our side, helping us out.

How much of the music business did you know about before signing with Victory and their in-house publishing company – Another Victory Publishing?

Alida: A lot of it was trial and error – learn from our mistakes. No one really set anything out any guidelines or anything as to what to expect. It all has been happening as everything progresses for us. We’re trying to become more informed and like Alan said, keeping the lines of communication open and trying to be aware of things Victory is doing for us and things that we should ask them to do for us.
Alan: As far as contracts and publishing goes, we were very unprepared to sign a contract at the time Victory was offering a contract. Thankfully, luckily, I have a good friend who is a lawyer, who helped us out with that and made sense of the jargon. He did his best to make sure we knew exactly what we were getting into.

When it comes to commercial music licensing, are there any TV shows you would like to have your music featured in?

Alan: Grey’s Anatomy.
Alida: I don’t really like Grey’s Anatomy, but Victory is trying to get our song On The Run, the title track from our new album, on that show, so that would be cool. Dude, I would love it if our song was on a really cool show like…what shows do I like? I don’t really watch TV.
Alan: I know Scrubs plays a lot of good music, so maybe we got a shot there.
Alida: Yeah, that’s true.
Alan: I don’t know. We don’t watch a whole lot of TV.
Alida: Dude, if Sex and the City was still on, I would do anything I could to get our music on that show because it’s the best. The movie is so good! I want to watch it every day of my life, but I don’t have $8.50 every day of my life, so I can’t. That movie did not disappoint. I can’t believe I’ve been talking about it seriously every day since I saw it.

What advice would you give those interested in breaking into songwriting and form a band?

Alan: Don’t! Go to school. No, I’m kidding.
Alida: If you do, be prepared for instability and uncertainty.
Alan: Someone once told me, “Alan, college isn’t for everyone.” I would just like to say, “Kids, music isn’t for everyone.”
Alida: It’s got an awesome mystic to it. But when it comes down to it, you don’t know when your next shower is going to be, or your next meal, things like that. But it’s worth it if you really love it, then go ahead. You gotta really love it.
Alan: You gotta want it.
Alida: Do whatever you can to be involved with people that you really get along with because you are never going to be apart from them.
Alan: There are probably close to 1,000 bands in Illinois alone that are better than us and more deserving of a record contract than us. The problem is that they spend all their time jamming in their parents’ basement. They might be better musicians, they might be better songwriters. But if you don’t get out, you don’t play or make your name known, or don’t meet the right people…then you’re going to be playing in your parents’ basement for the rest of your life.
Alida: Gotta make sure you’re ambitious. Gotta want it, gotta love it.
Alan: You gotta want it.

How do you feel about fans downloading your live performances (concert footage) online for free?

Alida: I think that you kind of sign away your decision to control that if you’re with a major label. I know we just want as many people to hear us and watch us as possible. So we’d be down with that idea. It depends on the label and a lot of other things though…
Alan: I know that the music industry is in a very volatile situation right now. Everything is really shaky and about to crumble. It’s inevitable that there are going to be some major changes in the music industry over the next several years. Record sales are at an all-time low.
Alida: Everything’s digital.
Alan: I don’t even know if I’m going to see CDs in the next ten years. The old model is changing. I’m not sure how it’s going to change, but I just think that bands need to be prepared and ready to mutate.
Alida: Yeah, just willing to succumb to the whole digital era.
Alan: Or else just go back to vinyl and keep it real.


Upcoming Shows and Reviews

Some of the Upcoming shows we will be covering:


6/7 Dot Dot Dot @ River Fest

6/9 Unicycle @ Empty Bottle

6/12 The Switches (opening for Ladytron) @ House of Blues

6/13 Dardo Grimlee @ Paradigm

6/14 These New Puritans @ Subterranean

6/14 Gin Blossoms @ Naper Days

6/17 Ladytron @ the Vic

6/21 Howard Livingston & Mile Marker 24 Band @ Blarney Island

8/1-8/3 Lollapalooza @ Grant Park

8/2 Warped Tour @ Tinely Park


6/17 George Michael @ Cox Arena

6/19 Jesca Hoop @ The Troubadour

6/25 Ani DiFranco @ Humphrey’s

6/29 Tony Martino @ Lestat’s

6/30 Robert Plant & Alison Krauss @ Humphrey’s

7/15 Journey/Heart/Cheap Trick @ Coors Amphitheater

7/16 DISTURBED aka Rockstar Mayhem! @ Coors Amphitheater

8/3 Bryan Adams @ The Belly Up Tavern

Remember to Check back for Reviews and photos of the shows!