15 Must-See Bands At Vans Warped Tour 2016

The 22nd annual Vans Warped Tour is back for the summer with one of the most nostalgic lineups to date. The tour is packed with a number of bands that will remind you of your younger years like New Found Glory and Sum 41, as well as bands who haven’t been around as long like Against The Current and Knuckle Puck. Warped Tour will be coming to the BB&T Pavilion in Camden on July 8, Nikon At Jones Beach Theater in Wantagh on July 9, and PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel on July 17.


Against The Current

Female-fronted bands are always going to be on the top of my “have to see” list of Warped Tour bands because they always have the most underrated vocals, especially live. Chrissy Costanza, vocalist of Against The Current, has one of the best voices out there right now, comparable to Demi Lovato in my opinion. The Poughkeepsie-based band’s latest release is an album called In Our Bones that was put out by Fueled By Ramen. Their set on the Cyclops Stage will be nothing less than a complete dance party.



Issues is one of the most diverse bands genre-wise that exists right now. Their latest album, Headspace, contains a song that can be categorized as, well, actually creates the category of, country metalcore, as well as a number of other songs that are almost impossible to categorize because of their creativity in bringing different genres together. You just don’t know what to expect from this Atlanta- and L.A.-based group in the best way. Their live show, even at Warped Tour, has always been an energetic and well-attended set. They will be at the Journeys Right Foot Stage.


Knuckle Puck

Knuckle Puck is one of the many pop punk bands featured in this year’s lineup. Originally starting out as a cover band, this Chicago-based group decided about five years ago that they were going to start writing their own music, and I’m sure they’re happy they did. Among their signing with Rise, Knuckle Puck released their debut studio album, Copacetic, in 2015. There is no doubt that their set will be one of the most explosive of the Poseidon Stage.


Mayday Parade

If you’ve been to Warped Tour within the past decade, I’m sure you’ve gotten a glance of Mayday Parade’s set whether you meant to or not. This will be their sixth Warped Tour since their start as a band back in 2005, and they could be found this year at the Journeys Right Foot Stage. The Tallahassee-hailing group has been nonstop since their beginning, and continues to release albums every couple years. Black Lines is their latest effort and lives up to the expectations they created with their previous albums. I’m sure they’ll keep their songs “Jersey” and “Black Cat” in this year’s Warped Tour set, but it will be refreshing to hear new material as well as the classics.


New Found Glory

“My Friends Over You” alone is a song that I’m sure will draw nostalgic 20-somethings to New Found Glory’s set this summer, even though they will also be performing songs off their recent 2015 album, Resurrection: Ascension. A fan-favorite single off of that release is “Vicious Love” and features their guitarist Chad Gilbert’s wife/vocalist of Paramore, Hayley Williams. The almost-20-year-old group is still going strong, and will play an array of classics and their new hits, which will be at the Journeys Left Foot Stage.


Real Friends

Pop punk band Real Friends will be playing the Journeys Right Foot Stage. The Illinois-based group played a $5 tour right before they jumped onto Warped Tour, where their shows took place in skate shops, record stores, VFW halls and even in a wrestling ring. That alone shows that they care most about the music and fans coming to see their shows live. It goes to show that their live sets pack a punch that they believe everyone should be able to witness, which, if you’re asking me, is totally true.



Post-hardcore band Secrets can be found on the Poseidon Stage all summer. With Richard Rogers’ clean vocals, and Wade Walters’ unclean vocals, Secrets has created songs with some of the catchiest and purest melodies with fierce and monumental screams that have you hooked with your first listen. Their most recent album, Everything That Got Us Here, suggests maturity in both their overall sound and lyrics in comparison to their first two studio releases. Don’t worry, the band still slows it down for the fan-favorite acoustic sing along to “Sleep Well, Darling.” My advice is learning every single word to it before seeing Secrets’ live show.


Set It Off

Set It Off has upgraded to the main stage, Journeys Left Foot Stage, this summer after playing their first summer of Warped Tour just last year. This pop rock foursome always puts on a lively, fun show, especially with the energy vocalist Cody Carson portrays. Their latest single, “Uncontainable,” almost sounds like a mixture of Fall Out Boy and Panic! At The Disco, and the accompanying music video definitely gives off a P!ATD vibe.


State Champs

Pop punk group State Champs have done nothing but prove themselves over the past few years, and it got them right up to the Journeys Right Foot Stage. Their most recent album, Around The World And Back, made its way all the way up to number 30 on the Billboard Top 200 Albums Chart upon its release, deservingly so. I won’t be surprised if State Champs draws the largest crowds each day this summer with their matured sound. Make sure you’re one of them.


Sum 41

Seeing Sum 41 perform “Fat Lip” and “In Too Deep” is enough to get anyone to their set at the Journeys Left Foot Stage this summer. With five studio albums over their career, fans are bound to go down memory lane with their earlier material, as well as enjoy newer jams with Sum 41. From 1997 until today, this group has rocked the world and that is all the reason to put them on your “Must See At Warped Tour” list.



If you are looking for a place to cool down during your rough, hot, Warped Tour summer day, Sykes’ set is the perfect place to do so. Hailing all the way from London, the threesome’s music is extremely calming and relaxing and is the set you want to be at to regroup and enjoy yourself. This female-fronted alternative electro-pop band’s latest release is a single called “Chances,” which contains mesmerizing melodies, similar to their collection of other songs. Their next EP will release while they are on the summer tour. You can find them on the Cyclops Stage.


The Maine

At almost-10-years-old, The Maine just barely falls into the “oldies” group of bands on Warped Tour. You most likely know them for “Into Your Arms” off of Can’t Stop Won’t Stop, but if you haven’t heard their latest album, American Candy, what are you even doing? I highly suggest you do so before catching them on the Journeys Right Foot Stage. This is a group whose talent has only gotten more raw in time and it makes you wonder what more they have in store for us in the coming years.


The Story So Far

It’s time to get all of your anger out at the Journeys Right Foot Stage with The Story So Far. It’s not quite Warped Tour if you don’t spend at least a few minutes shouting (and pointing your index finger) along with Parker Cannon. He once said that they will never perform “Clairvoyant” live, but then went back on that statement when they played it on their headlining tour last fall. Will they perform it this summer, or is it not pop punk enough for Warped? We shall see.



Who doesn’t love the soothing sound of a violin gracing their ears? Just another band to add to this Warped Tour nostalgia reunion; Yellowcard is back on the main stage and is going to bring you right back to “Ocean Avenue.” If Sum 41, NFG, and the rest of the classics don’t satisfy the younger you, that’s what Yellowcard will be at the Journeys Left Foot Stage for. They will have a new album, a self-titled one, out this September.


Young Guns

Another band coming straight from England to the U.S. for this tour, and with sounds similar to The Killers and Breaking Benjamin, Young Guns will be owning the Poseidon Stage and you should be there to witness. This band’s latest album, Ones And Zeros, strays away from their typical British rock sound, but kept the fans satisfied with their passionate and aggressive energy throughout each song. Warning: the melody in their latest single, “Bulletproof,” will stick in your brain for hours.