State In The Real – Penn State Music Scene

Author - Sam

Panic! At The Disco Release Second Single & Album Artwork

Panic! At The Disco (P!ATD)  is back at it again and officially released the band’s second single off their new album Too Weird To Live, To Rare To Die! set to drop October 8th, 2013.

Earlier this summer, P!ATD released its first single “Miss Jackson” and received mixed reviews. A lot of people enjoyed the song but feared that the song was essentially a b-side track to Fall Out Boy’s Save Rock And Roll and that P!ATD was losing themselves and their unique sound and character. While I really enjoy “Miss Jackson”, I do agree it sounded a little too much like Save Rock And Roll. However, late last night P!ATD’s “This Is Gospel” hit YouTube with a music video along with the release of the band’s album artwork (Seen above). From the first listen through, I was head over heels. This is what I exactly what I expected from P!ATD and I couldn’t be more proud of them. The chorus hits you so hard in the face and really captivates Brendon Urie’s incredible voice. Also, considering I haven’t stopped listening to this single I think it’s safe to say I’m beyond stoked for the entire album.  Check out the official music video below, and let me know what you think!

 

Also, here’s a picture I took of Brendon Urie last weekend at the Radio 104.5 Block Party in Philly where Panic! At The Disco headlined. This is just your casual post-show backflip. 

Vans Warped Tour Holmdel, NJ 2013 Review

Shane Told of Silverstein

Chances are, you probably know about The Vans Warped Tour. Whether you heard it in the Blink-182 song, or actually attended the festival before, this powerhouse of a festival is the definition of summer for kids like myself. Warped tour is currently in its 19th year running, and festival creator Kevin Lyman has his tour perfected to a well-oiled machine.

I grew up going to Warped Tour and have been attending the festival in my home date of Camden, New Jersey, since 2006.  Last summer, I was blessed to cover the Hartford, Connecticut date. I was given the opportunity again this summer to cover the Holdmel, New Jersey date, along side State In The Real’s finest, Eric.

The Vans Warped Tour is a world of its own. The heat was a scorching 93 degrees with sun and humidity. Upon arriving to the PNC Bank Arts Center as doors were opening, the line to get in went on for days. For majority of the tour dates, doors open at 11 a.m. and the music starts at 11:15 a.m.  This year, Warped Tour had 8 stages with a full line up of artists and bands on each stage.  Each date, the bands always have a different set time. It keeps it fair on which band opens and closes each night, as well as keeping the fans on edge and encourages them to arrive early in hopes that they won’t miss their favorite bands.

As my friends and I were walking up to the gates to pick up my pass, we quickly realized one of the reasons why we wanted to come to warped tour was the opening band. The Summer Set got moved to the main stage, and was the first band to kick things off for the day. We grabbed my pass and ran to the main stage to catch the pop rock band.

Brian Dales of The Summer Set

The Summer Set is incredible live. Their energy and the way they feed off each other is awesome. Their songs are super fun and upbeat and definite summer hits. This past spring, the band released their album, Legendary, and is easily one of my favorite releases of 2013. Their set included many hits off Legendary such as “Boomerang” and “Lightning In A Bottle” . They concluded with their most popular song, “Chelsea”.  They also have a girl drummer, so ten points for them.

Because we ran to The Summer Set, my friends and I didn’t get a chance to see the giant inflatable set list. So we wandered to the huge Vans inflatable and checked out where and when our favorite bands were playing. Luckily for us, a good amount of the bands we wanted to see were in the amphitheater, so we were able to beat the heat for a good portion of the day. The amphitheater was split into two stages: the Domo Stage and the Tilly’s Stage. Through out the day, as one band was playing on one stage, the next band was setting up on the other to keep the flow going.

Upon entering the amphitheater, we caught the end of All Star Weekend’s set on the Tilly’s Stage. This was my first time seeing All Star Weekend, but I knew they were a band that got their start on Disney. Apparently, this tour is the band’s last run as All Star Weekend, and they plan on changing their name and sound after the tour concludes. Nonetheless, All Star Weekend was so fun to watch. It was easy to see that the guys really loved performing and I’m excited to see what’s in store for the band.

Next, New Jersey natives The Early November opened the Domo stage and absolutely killed it. I have seen The Early November previously and I really love this band. Ace Enders has an incredible voice and understanding of music as a whole. His guitar was also so sick! The band played new and old favorites and I’m glad I was able to watch them.

Back on the Tilly’s stage was an alternative rock band called Gin Wigmore. They walked out on stage in matching black and white outfits. They had to be sweltering in those suits. It made me sweat just by looking at them. I had never heard of the band before and they definitely were not my style, however the lead singer (who was covered in really awesome tattoos) was absolutely incredible. Victoria Claire’s voice resonated in the amphitheater and it was amazing.


Brian Craig and Anthony Li of Action Item

Next up were Action Item, who are also from New Jersey. The pop band sent chills down my spine as they explained to the crowd that they grew up coming to this venue, and how incredible it was for them to be playing on the same stage they saw some of their favorite bands play on. They set the stage on fire and quickly became one of my favorite sets that I caught during the day.  Action Item was so appreciative for everyone in the crowd and you could tell this tour date meant the world to them.

Following Action Item, a third band hailing from New Jersey took the stage. Pop-punk band, Man Overboard, brought the house down, filling a good portion of the amphitheater with fans ready to defend pop punk. I love Man O, and their set was filled with my favorite songs. They didn’t spend much time talking as they wanted to get the most out of their set time. They did, however, express how awesome it felt to be back in New Jersey. It was interesting to see them perform without a “mosh” pit. The amphitheater was set up so that the rows of seats went all the way up to the barricade, meaning it was impossible to open up a pit.

After Man Overboard, I decided to wander out of the amphitheater and back into the heat to check out the many tents that can be found at Warped Tour. From band merch to non-profits organizations to Warped tour sponsors, every one has a tent that concertgoers can check out throughout the day. It’s nice when there’s downtime between sets to check out the tents and support your favorite band or non-profit organization.

Before I knew it, my most anticipated band was ready to hit the main stage. Sleeping With Sirens are unreal live, and I caught them many times last summer on Warped Tour. As much as I love them, I was kind of disappointed with their set. Maybe it was the heat, or maybe it’s the fact that I practically hate their new album, but I just wasn’t satisfied when their set concluded. They did play many old favorites, and the one new song that I do enjoy, titled “Congratulations,” featuring Matty Mullins of Memphis May Fire. Matty came out on stage for his part in the song. Other than that, I was left feeling half-satisfied at best.

After their set concluded, I ran to the press area behind the amphitheater as Eric set up an interview with The Story So Far’s bassist Kelen Capener. Be on the lookout for that later this week!

Alex Reed of Go Radio

When we finished up with the interview, Go Radio was tearing it up on the Tilly’s stage. I absolutely love this band and I’m so happy for all their success thus far. Their music is so real and I think that’s what I like about them the most. Their lyrics pull at your heartstrings and suck you in. They really pride themselves on making music that is real to them and I really appreciate them for that.

The night was winding down, and two big names were closing the night in the amphitheater.  Forever The Sickest Kids were on Warped and ready to make a comeback after falling out of the scene for quite some time. I’m happy to say that after all these years, watching them brought back so many memories. The best part about their set list was that they played all their hits and it was so fun hearing those songs live again. I’m excited for the future of Forever The Sickest Kids and I’m glad to see them back.

The last and final band I caught was one of my favorite bands on the tour: Australia’s finest, Tonight Alive. Lead by the incredible vocalist Jenna McDougall, their set was indescribable. Something special was in the air during their set and Jenna could feel it. She opened up to the crowd and found a connection with us unlike anyone I’ve ever seen before. The band played my absolute favorite Tonight Alive song titled “Amelia,” which is a pretty slow song. I did not look up the set list before their performance and almost cried when I heard the first opening chord. It’s a beautiful song about the death of a young 16-year-old girl. The feeling in the amphitheater when the song concluded was an extremely special moment that I don’t think I’ll ever forget.

As the sun set in New Jersey, The Vans Warped Tour concluded and it was another festival for the books. Yet again, Warped Tour did not disappoint and the festival delivered everthing I expected and more. I can’t wait to catch the tour next year and conclude this review in Warped Tour fashion: “I’ll see you in the pit!”

The rest of the guys who attended Warped Tour in Holmdel weighed in on their day at Warped, so keep reading to hear their experiences!

Eric Poluhovich:

I’ve been to Warped Tour a number of times, but this year was probably my favorite. Not only was it my first year with a photo pass, but the show itself was awesome. A number of my favorite bands played, some of which I had never seen live before and others that I will always love seeing perform. Throughout the day I saw The Chariot, The Wonder Years, The Story So Far, Bring Me The Horizon, While She Sleeps, letlive., Chiodos, Silverstein, and Big Chocolate. My favorites for the day were letlive., The Chariot, and While She Sleeps. All of the bands have some of the best stage presence I’ve ever seen, and letlive. and The Chariot always get crazy. Jason from letlive. ran off stage, climbed a tree, and was crowd surfed back to the front. Stevis from The Chariot brought his guitar into the crowd and rocked out in the middle of a circle pit, and closed out the set by climbing the top of the stage. Those were definitely some of the best performances I’ve ever seen.

Lawrence Taylor of While She Sleeps

In addition to hearing great music from great musicians, I got to talk to a number of them about their work and about the tour. I conducted and assisted in interviews with Silverstein, While She Sleeps, letlive., The Wonder Years, The Story So Far, The Swellers, and No Bragging Rights.

In my opinion, this year’s Warped Tour was the best tour they’ve had in the past few years. The lineup was on point, and I had a lot of fun (PNC Bank Arts Center ended up being a good venue for Warped). It was a really great experience.

The interviews and pictures from the show will be up in the next few days, so stay tuned!

Johnny Chadwick (The Lion 90.7fm/State In The Real):

Warped Tour 2013 is a step in the right direction for those unsure of its various genre changes and venue placements over the years. The PNC Bank Arts Center isn’t as open as the Raceway, but they definitely made it work. Through the blistering heat (and wearing a film of sunscreen), we ran around the entire festival to catch the greatest bands on the bill (they really should just put them all on the same stage shouldn’t they?). Man Overboard, Bring Me The Horizon, August Burns Red, We Came As Romans, Silverstein, No Bragging Rights, and The Used all killed it with great stage presence and commendable performance through the heat. The Story So Far was one of the most anticipated bands, and they filled the entire amphitheater. The top performance has to go to Chiodos, though, as they hit every great song they put out, and you can see the difference with the addition of Tom (formerly of The Fall Of Troy). Lastly, the break out band of this year was Stick To Your Guns as they were engaging and on every beat. It was a great year, not only for familiar bands, but newer ones as well.

David Kennedy of The Chariot

Ryan Kappy (The Lion 90.7fm/State In The Real):

Every summer I wait for the one day that is like Christmas to me, and that day is Warped Tour. This year the theme of Warped Tour was “best day ever,” and I believe it was for the sole purpose of the lineup that was presented this year. Old gems and newcomers graced the various stages through the day and not one band held back their blood, sweat, and tears during their sets. The New Jersey stops are always favorites on the tour, so bands knew what they were getting into with the fan reactions.

The bands I saw were The Early November, The Wonder Years, Man Overboard, August Burns Red, The Story So Far, Chiodos, Silverstein, and The Used. As you can tell, my list consisted of seeing both old and new acts who I’ve seen before in some way, shape, or form, but wanted to see in a setting like Warped Tour. My favorite set is tied between Chiodos and The Story So Far with The Wonder Years right behind them.

The Warped Tour is a summer camps for bands that travel the country together and form a community with each other and the whole fan base of the punk/hardcore scenes. If you ever get a chance, go see this camp for it could be the best day you can ever have.

Oli Sykes of Bring Me The Horizon

State In The Real Photos By: Eric Poluhovich
Crowd Photos By: Samantha Metz & Carly Pogachefsky

Macklemore and Ryan Lewis set to perform at Penn State's Bryce Jordan Center

Penn State, get ready to pop some tags.
Seattle natives Macklemore & Ryan Lewis are making a stop at the Bryce Jordan Center this fall! Let’s hope when we put our hands up the ceiling can hold us on November 7th when the duo is set to hit the stage during their World Tour.

Shout out to UPAC for offering us discounted student tickets! Pre-sale tickets go on sale starting this Thursday. You don’t want to miss this show. To put this show into perspective, there isn’t a Philadelphia or Pittsburgh show during this tour, so we can guarantee this will sell out.

Tickets are $45, $39.50, $34.50 for reserved and GA floor and go on sale Friday, June 28 at 10am at the Bryce Jordan Center, Eisenhower Auditorium, Penn State Downtown Theatre, Altoona Campus Ticket Outlet, online at www.ticketmaster.com or by phone at 800-745-3000.

But if you miss the pre-sale, keep  huntin’ lookin’ for a come up in our ticket exchange!

Check out our Macklemore & Ryan Lewis Spotify playlist:

Skate And Surf Interview: To Write Love On Her Arms

Chances are, if you had a MySpace or went to a rock concert in high school, you might remember To Write Love On Her Arms(TWLOHA). I know I remember seeing my favorite band members rockin’ their t-shirts to spread awareness for the organization’s cause. Intrigued by the shirts, I did my own research on the organization that so many bands seemed to support and instantly fell in love with it. I still have my first To Write Love On Her Arms shirt in my dresser, and it’s still one of my favorite shirts I own. In high school, I even helped organize a dance that raised money for TWLOHA (I still have the thank you postcard they sent me on my bulletin board after we sent in our donation!).

To Write Love On Her Arms has been around as long as I have been involved in my music scene, so this organization always had a special place in my heart because I feel like I grew up with it. When I found out I had the chance to catch up with one of the TWLOHA guys, Chad Moses, at Skate and Surf I made sure to grab an interview!

To Write Love on Her Arms is a non-profit organization meant to give hope and offer an outlet to people struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury and suicidal thoughts. Moses had been with the organization for quite sometime, and explained how the organization in itself is honest and combating isolation.

“It’s more than the issues of depression or suicide, it’s about not talking and not getting how you feel out in the open,” explained Moses.

The cool thing about TWLOHA is that they got involved in the music scene from the start of their organization. For me at least, it almost goes hand in hand to associate TWLOHA with the punk rock music scene. Moses talked about how the organization has had a tent at Warped Tour for the past seven years and Bamboozle for the past five. This was the return of Skate and Surf so this was TWLOHA’s first time at this festival.

“People, whether they’re struggling with something or not, turn to music as an escape,” said Moses “Music is the perfect example of community at its best.”

The purpose of having TWLOHA tent at festivals like Warped Tour, Bamboozle, and Skate and Surf is really to spread awareness of the organization and their efforts to the tight knit community that is the punk rock music scene. They also sell merch, where the profits go directly towards the organization.

In 2011, TWLOHA received a $1 million grant from Chase at the first-ever American Giving Awards (AGAs). This was a huge honor for the non-profit, and when I asked Moses what the organization did with the grant he explained the HEAVY AND LIGHT tour.

“HEAVY AND LIGHT started as one night in Florida, where we’d connect music and community,” said Moses. “But it’s sometimes difficult to get to Florida, so once we received this grant we wanted to take HEAVY AND LIGHT across the country.”

The HEAVY AND LIGHT tour offered a unique evening of songs, conversation, and hope to all its attendees. Each night was special in its own way, and I was lucky enough to attend the Philadelphia date. I left the Theater Of The Living Arts completely inspired and totally made the drive home from Penn State the same day worth it.

In closing, when we got to talking about State In The Real and the Penn State community, he expressed how lucky college students are right now. He explained how college is a bubble where you can do whatever you want and make your voice heard. Moses even had some words of advice to Penn State.

“Penn State has always been so kind to us and thank you for doing all you do,” said Moses “Regardless of what organization you’re passionate about or even just school in general, remember why you’re doing what you’re doing.”

For more information on To Write Love On Her Arms and how you can get involved check out their website here: http://twloha.com

Skate and Surf Review: Day Two

So I woke up Sunday morning with high hopes for Skate and Surf to accommodate the serious issues of yesterday, especially because Sunday’s forecast was also rain, rain and a chance of more rain.

After spending the entire day in the rain Saturday in only a tank top (I CHECKED THE WEATHER BEFORE I LEFT AND THE CHANCE OF RAIN WAS AT 10%, LIES), I opted out in arriving a little later to Skate and Surf. I also just wanted to avoid sitting in my car for hours on end trying to park again. I put on my sooooo pop-punk windbreaker, picked up my friend Johnny (pictured with me in the bottom left hand corner of picstitch!) and headed to the park for Skate and Surf round two around 4:30 p.m.

Upon arrival at the park for day two I was let down in seeing that nothing changed. It was still chaotic. It was still wet. And the main stage was still running late. But nonetheless, Johnny and I arrived just as another hometown favorite, Saves The Day, was hitting the stage. The large crowd seemed to have loved every second of Saves The Day’s set.  The one song I and what seemed like most of the crowd was also looking forward to most from them, “At The Funeral” got cut because of their late start, which was a real bummer.

Johnny and I then wondered over to the Ford Fusion and Ford Focus stages where we managed to stay for a good portion of the day.

MOD SUN took the Ford Focus stage first and I was really surprised by his performance. I had passed MOD SUN’s set numerous times at this past year’s Warped Tour but never stopped to watch. MOD SUN is your modern day Hippie gone rapper? I’m still not sure why he kept saying to the crowd that he wanted to turn Skate and Surf into Woodstock…but I digress. Regardless, he emphasized on calling his crowd not fans but friends, and putting the peace sign up with the beat. He also blew both Johnny’s and my mind when he revealed that MOD SUN is in fact an acronym for Movement On Dreams Stand Under None…deep right?

Switching to the Ford Fusion stage, Youtube–Cover-Band-Who-Apparently-Has-Their-Own-Music -Now Hollywood Ending (pictured middle right hand side of picstitch) were ready to party with the crowd. These precious little cherubs came out on stage and it was no wonder that their entire crowd was all girls, except Johnny….and this dancing boy in a Taking Back Sunday shirt. Their songs were super pop and even played their cover of Justin Bieber’s “Beauty and The Beat”. All in all, they were a change of pace for the festival and it was fun to watch them.  But have no fear, Skate and Surf made sure the young pop band got to witness their first ever circle pit, so there’s that.

Next, back on the Ford Focus stage was Breathe Carolina (pictured top right hand corner of picstitch). If you attended Breathe Carolina’s show at Penn State in Fall 2011(Thanks SPA!) you already know Breathe Carolina likes to rage. In fact, I think rage would be an understatement for these guys.  Watching their set was like attending Project X in real life. Bottles were popped. The beat dropped. Members of Breathe Carolina walked on the crowd.  It was cray. But don’t worry, WE WON’T BLACK OUT.

Finally, one of my most anticipated bands on the entire line-up was up. Cartel (pictured top left hand corner of picstitch) is one of my absolute favorite bands and their album Chroma is easily one of my favorite albums of all time. Considering how many shows I go to, it’s weird for me to admit I had never gotten the chance to see them live. However, Skate and Surf was finally my chance.  I made sure to be up close for their set as the crowd grew larger and larger. It actually surprised me that they were on a side stage considering the size of the crowd that came to watch. Opening with Chroma hits “Say Anything (Else)” and “Honestly”, their set lived up to so many expectations for me and beyond. Will Pugh’s voice is so incredible and sounds the same, if not better live than it does on their records. They played a nice mix of old and new favorites, which really captivated the crowd.

Following Cartel, Johnny and I walked over to the main stage as Macklemore and Ryan Lewis (pictured bottom right hand corner of picstitch) were gearing up. The massive crowd stretched almost to the merch tent in the middle of the festival grounds. I’m not much of a rap person but when it comes to Macklemore and his album The Heist in particular, I can’t stop listening. You could consider his music my guilty pleasure and he was another one of the artists I couldn’t wait to see live. His set was more of a show than anything else. While only really playing four or five songs, he interacted with the crowd on a completely different level, bringing up fans on stage for wearing a bear costume, and walking out on the crowds hands. Right before he performed “Same Love”(which is one of the most beautiful songs out right now), Macklemore gave an inspiring speech to the crowd of teens and young adults. He explained how our generation is in a pivotal point in the rights for equality for all and how important it is to make our voices heard. After he ended his song, he asked the entire crowd if you are in favor of equality for all to raise a single finger. Almost every single person in the crowd had their index finger in the air and chills ran up and down my spine. It was moments like that which made Skate and Surf, although hectic and unorganized, also awesome and inspiring.

Closer of the night, A Day To Remember, took over the main stage to end not only the night but the festival as well. In the end, Skate and Surf 2013 was put to rest, and maybe for the better. While some things were out of the festival’s control, changes could have been made to accommodate both the bands and the attendees but they weren’t and I think that’s what let me down most.  Many, including myself, left the festival looking at the glass half empty. We all got to see some of our favorite artists, but not the way we had hoped. I truly hope that if Skate and Surf returns next year, they take into account the feedback they get now that the weekend is all said and done.

Skate And Surf Review: Day One

The weekend was finally upon us. While the sun was hiding behind clouds and rain the entire weekend, music lovers from the tri-state area and beyond convened in the Six Flags parking lot in Jackson, NJ (conveniently located next to the worlds tallest roller coaster, King Da Ka).

Just by looking at the hefty line-up it was clear Skate and Surf had a lot of expectations to live up to coming into the weekend. With the fact in mind that this festival was revived from years past, many had expectations that the festival would be executed at the same caliber that it used to be. Many were also interested in seeing what it would become.

Several of those who would have attended the usual Jersey festival held at this time of year called Bamboozle found themselves at Skate and Surf hoping that it’d be just as incredible as past festivals.

The festival was supposed to take place at Plaza Green at iPlay America in Freehold, New Jersey but was moved to Six Flags Great Adventure for the weekend to hold more attendees. While the move seemed to have made sense at first, I believe this was the pivotal downfall of the ultimate success of Skate and Surf.

In my eyes the festival had its highs, but unfortunately also had its inevitable lows.

Day One:

Getting to Skate and Surf was a struggle in itself. The doors didn’t open until 2 p.m. and  traffic was unreal. People wanted to get to this festival early, and considering the line-up I can’t really blame them. I was only coming from the suburbs of Philly, and sat in a line of traffic for over an hour just to get into the park.

Finally, I grabbed my press pass and headed into the festival around 2:45 p.m.  As I mentioned earlier, the weather was not ideal for an outdoor festival by any means. I don’t blame Skate and Surf for something they can’t control, however none of the stages were covered which put all the bands at risk for ruining extremely expensive instruments and equipment. If I was an artist playing, I’d be hesitant to play too. It seemed that Skate and Surf made do with what they could, but the chance of electrocution hung over for most of the day.

Upon entering the soggy festival grounds, I headed straight to the Fueled By Ramen tent to meet up with my friend Maria (pictured with me in the picstitch bottom right hand corner!), luckily she was there working so I had someone to hang with for the day. I then went over to the To Write Love On Her Arms tent to get my interview with them done before hitting the stages. (Be on the look out for that later in the week!)

It took me a second to realize the four smaller stages were directly next to each other. Even though the two stages on each side would switch off, depending on the band sometimes the stages on the other side were too overbearing and their sounds would bleed together. This made it difficult to focus on one bands sound sometimes and you could tell that some of the artists had a hard time hearing themselves while they performed.

While the festival catered to almost every genre imaginable, Saturday’s bands were definitely heavy Pop Punk- based bands. I spent the day running around from stage to stage staying for two or three songs of each set.

Surprisingly though, the first artist I was able to catch was T. Mills on the main stage. I am by no means a fan of T. Mills, but I will give him credit in the fact that he has fun with what he’s doing. His persona on stage is something else, but what captivated me most is when he dedicated a song to his grandmother who recently passed away. He showed a side of T.Mills that isn’t usually seen, which I thought was pretty sweet.

The first full band I caught was Brooklyn’s own American Authors, and these guys knew how to have fun with the crowd. They fed off the energy that was put forth by the kids who didn’t let a little rain ruin their fun. I’ve never seen or heard of them before, but I really liked their style.

Hundredth was the next band I watched and boy was I in for a crazy ride.  They were another band I had never heard or seen before, so I really didn’t know what to expect. The crowd this time was a lot more intense, and the security in the pit even had to carry kids out for getting too wild.

I found myself wondering over to Balance and Composure’s set, which seemed to draw a big crowd. It became clear that the Aquarian Bigger stage crowd wise was continuously growing as night fell considering Into It. Over It. And Transit (pictured top left hand corner of picstitch) were set to follow B&C.

The main stage was running late all day, causing a serious issue for the closing acts and the pushing back of many set times. However, this worked in my favor because I was lucky enough to be able to catch Paradise Fears (pictured bottom left hand corner or picstitch) on the Aquarian Better stage and Mayday Parade (pictured top row center of picstitch) on the main stage with enough time to run back to Aquarian Better stage to one of the hometown Jersey natives I Call Fives’ set to catch their last and my favorite song, “Elevator Music” (pictured top right hand corner of picstitch)

Sadly, Paradise Fears set fell short due to technical difficulties because of the rain but they made sure to slip in their hits. This was my first time seeing them live, and I really enjoy their pop sound. My favorite song, “Sanctuary” was awesome to hear live, especially because of vocalist Sam Miller’s inspirational spoken word/rap in the middle of the song.

Mayday’s set never disappoints for me. They’re one of my favorite bands and their live performance is something I always look forward to. Seeing them perform as the rain got harder was actually such a cool experience. I’m an avid concert goer and you’ll always see me in the pit, however when I have a press pass I usually like to kick back and enjoy the show. I couldn’t help myself though when Mayday Parade was on stage. You don’t know truly what dancing in the pit to “Jersey” is until you do it in the pouring rain in New Jersey.

At this point in the night, the crowd was growing restless. YouTube sensation Timeflies hit the main stage next and the crowd wasn’t afraid to make it known that they wanted Fall Out Boy.  During Timeflies set, it was easy to hear the chants for Fall Out Boy over the singer’s voice.

Almost an hour later than the planned set time, the moment everyone was waiting for was finally here. Fall Out Boy is most definitely back and after their 16 song set, it is safe to say the crowd welcomed them back with open arms. There are few moments in my life that can compare to seeing Fall Out Boy perform “Sugar We’re Going Down” in the pouring rain. Fall Out Boy kept thanking everyone for sticking out in the rain, and didn’t take much time to stop between songs in hopes to fit their entire set in.  One of my favorite moments of their set was when they were introducing their song “Save Rock and Roll”.  Bassist Pete Wentz explained how the title is essentially a joke but the fact that thousands of people were outside enduring the rain at a rock show was what rock and roll is and should be.

All in all, Skate and Surf: Day One was wet, chaotic, and a little bit of a struggle to get through with major technical difficulties. It seemed throughout the day organization was no where to be found. I think the biggest miscommunication was between the six flags staff/security and the actual Skate and Surf staff. No one really knew what was going on or when which made it difficult to keep the day running smoothly. However, the bands for the most part respected the kids who stuck it out, which I thought was pretty cool. Many of the bands said during their sets that you’d only find kids in New Jersey and the tri-state area scene who have this much heart for their music regardless of the weather.