- The Washington Times - Saturday, August 3, 2002

"I couldn't wait for the summer and the Warped Tour/I remember it's the first time I saw her there." from "Rock Show" by Blink-182
There's good reason why the Warped Tour has become one of the country's longest-running traveling festivals. A simple formula of pop-flavored punk bands, extreme sports athletes and carnival-style booths make it a kind of traveling Woodstock for the next generation.
The tour stops at Nissan Pavilion on Thursday.
For the uninitiated, here's a rough guide to the bands, some new and some old, that shouldn't be missed at this year's festival:
Bad Religion is one of the few acts on the tour that is older than most of the audience. Formed in 1980, the L.A. punk band has more than a dozen albums and compilations to its name, and has been the inspiration for many of the groups on the tour. Its 1995 album "All Ages" gives a good feel for the band's career and its latest CD "The Process of Belief," came out in February.
If the Mighty Mighty Bosstones ring a bell, then it's probably because of the band's hit single, "The Impression That I Get," which stormed the charts in 1997. It was one of the more prominent groups to emerge out of the ska movement after the success of No Doubt, and while not as popular as it once was, its fans are still quite devoted. Their latest album, "A Jackknife to a Swan" was released in early July.
Most local music buffs don't have to be told what Good Charlotte is. The rock band from Annapolis released its major label premiere two years ago, and the highly anticipated follow-up "The Young and the Hopeless" is set to hit stores this fall. In the meantime, fans can catch some of the new songs when the local boys stop through town.
New Found Glory's "My Friend's Over You" is a perfect example of a Warped Tour song. It has somewhat snotty lyrics, a punchy riff and a point in the song that's perfect for bouncing up and down. The band's third album, "Sticks and Stones," was released in June, and the Florida pop-punk band (which sometimes bears the tag of "emo") is a favorite of Warped Tour audiences.
Reel Big Fish never made it as big in the mainstream as the Bosstones, but the band is probably better loved among ska-punk fans. Putting a harder edge on its music and adding in a good dose of juvenile humor (song titles include "Scott's a Dork" and "I Want Your Girlfriend to Be My Girlfriend"), the band's first album in four years, "Cheer Up" was released in June.
For a music festival, there's also an awful lot of other things going on. Overheated rock fans can take a dip in the "Pirate Zone," which features a slip-n-slide, a misting tent and a dunk tank.
Skaters Steve Cabellaro and Mike Frazier will also be giving demonstrations, as will mountain bikers Daniel Drain and Aaron Lutz, among others. An extreme drumming competition and a battle of the bands are also part of the crazy carnival that is the Warped Tour.
Teens hoping to ditch their parents can even drop them off in "Reverse Day Care," which gives bored adults a place to go while junior is headbanging to New Found Glory.

WHAT: Vans Warped Tour featuring Bad Religion, Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Reel Big Fish and others
WHERE: Nissan Pavilion, 7800 Cellar Door Road, off Interstate 66 and Route 29, Bristow, Va. (near Manassas)
WHEN: Thursday, 11 a.m. to midnight
TICKETS: $23.50 to $28.50
TELEPHONE: 202/432-SEAT


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