Vans Warped Tour @ SDCCU Stadium Lot in San Diego, CA
Review & Photography by: Ian Enger
August 2015 was when I went to my first ever Vans Warped Tour. The only band I want to see was As It Is. I know there were so many other great bands to this day that I still listen to, but back then the only one that mattered was as it is. Fast forward three years and three more Vans Warped Tour’s later, today was my final time at this festival, but in San Diego California. Today I will photograph the band that started it all for me and so many more that I liked. I knew that it was going to be an absolutely unforgettable day.
My day started at 11:45 with the band Real Friends. I had seen Real Friends a few times before, but today was different. Today was special. Today was the final time I see them up on the main stage at Vans Warped Tour. Their set was electrifying just as they had been many times before. Throughout the day, I traveled to all five different stages seeing hard-core bands like Wage War or Motionless In White to some gritty pop punk like Trash Boat and Knuckle Puck and finishing off the day with some more laid-back rock like All Time Low and The Maine.
It was about 6:30 when I got to the Owly.fm stage. As it is was set to take the stage at 6:35. I could hardly contain my excitement. They got on about 6:40, and from there it was all that chaos. Playing songs like No Way Out and Hey Rachel from their previous album titled Okay, to the newer, hard hitting songs The Stigma (Boys Don’t Cry) and The Wounded World from their upcoming record The Great Depression. It was my sixth time seeing As It Is, and every time they just get better and better.
Throughout my roughly 10 hour day, I saw 14 bands. I am fairly bummed that the Vans Warped Tour is ending, because it was my biggest goal as a photographer to be on the tour. Although that dream will never happen, I am thankful that I had the opportunity to attend four dates in four years of the tour and photograph the years 2017 and 2018. I will never forget my best days of summer. I will never forget Vans Warped Tour.