Album Review: 2013 Warped Tour Compilation

Remembering what Warped sounded like when I started going in 2002, and comparing it to this album, it’s hard to believe it’s the same tour.  There’s nothing rebellious here; nothing sounds innovative, pissed off, or noteworthy.  Everything is over processed, love sick, white washed and safe.  While I have a flicker of hope the album producers just picked a series of sub-par songs from each artist, and the general show will be better… it’s a flicker, and a weak one at that.

I thought maybe my memory was deceiving me.  Was Warped really that good a decade ago?  Is my nostalgia just editing out the bad?  A quick re-watch of the 2002 documentary, and a look at the line up on Wiki says yes, it really was a punk show in the past.  Yet now, Warped Tour is starting to sound pretty Top 20.  Did the tour get picked up by MTV and I just missed the merger?

Individual tracks are often unpalatable.  Summer Set’s  “Boomerang” is not only pure pop in its beat, the chorus calls out Beyonce and Jay-Z by name.  GoRadio’s “I Won’t Lie” sounds like a country song with it’s low, yodeled vocals.  Goldhouse’s “Nothing to Lose” is the sort of bad synthesizer mush the elderly think is dance music, which clears the floor whenever anyone under the age of 40 hears it.  Woe, is Me’s “I came, I saw, I conquered” is so spastic I actually started laughing.

Somewhere around the mid-point the artists do get a little better.  The closing track, The Exposed’s “Sleeping’s a Waste of My Youth”, is a pretty catchy summery pop-punk song.  Letlive and Citizen also have solid contributions.   However, at the point you get to these tracks, most listeners will have already given up.  Any value an individual act has is lost under the weight of being included with so much drivel.

As a collection, the transitions between tracks are lacking.  Laughable hip-hop attempts follow hair-screamo.  In other places, similar artists and songs are placed one after another in such a way you can’t tell where one ends and the next begins.  You probably made better mixed tapes in high school, when you sat by the radio waiting to press the record button on your Walkman.

It’s a good value, only if you weigh number of tracks (50) against the overall cost of album.  If I had to own one of the two discs, I would get the second- it has marginally better artists.  In terms of quality of the compilation,  the 2013 Warped Tour Compilation’s a bust.

My favorite part of the album?  The advanced copy’s typo on Bring Me the Horizon’s track, resulting in it being listed as “Go to Hell for Heaven’s Sak.”  When an unintentionally blasphemous dick joke is the best part of an album, it’s time to go back to the drawing board.

1/5 Stars

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Comments 4

  • Sure most of the songs are “traditional” Warped Tour artists, but Warped Tour was always about exposing kids to what’s new more than being about punk rock. These bands are currently the most popular amongst teens these days, which is why they are on the tour as well as this compilation. The “older” audience hates it because it’s new and “popular” today, and because they aren’t willing to open up to new music. Instead they wanna listen to “old” bands on repeat and complain. You can’t have the same band play every year and expect new audience/age groups to start coming out.

    Carson Winter Reply:

    I think you’re mistaken in your assumption that the people who complain about warped tour only want to listen to old music. The problem is that there is a lot of great music being made today, and instead of bringing out these interesting, challenging musicians, the warped tour panders to the lowest common denominator with accessible music with a false sense of underground cred. It’s essentially a pop music tour for kids that wear black.

    ladyjojo Reply:


    My favorite part about the older versions of Warped was going without any knowledge about 90% of the line-up, and coming home with new favorite, emerging artists. Basically, I loved the “new” aspect it fostered. Some of my favorite bands, like Flogging Molly, I found at the Warped tour while I was waiting for someone’s set to begin. I went last year to see a new band, Dead Sara, and was totally blown away by their sound.

    However, in choosing more established bands who push no boundaries and create nothing innovative, the 2013 tour feels stale and like a parody of its former self. The actual types of music the tour itself purports to promote are very weakly represented in the line up.

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