Soulful, screeching, and loud: Warped Tour covers the spectrum

Guitarists Jake Pitts (left) and Jeremy Ferguson of the Black Veil Brides, one of more than 70 bands at the show. Guitarists Jake Pitts (left) and Jeremy Ferguson of the Black Veil Brides, one of more than 70 bands at the show. (Robert E. Klein for The Boston Globe)
By Scott McLennan
Globe Correspondent / July 14, 2011

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MANSFIELD - The Warped Tour cavalcade rolled through Mansfield yesterday, leaving practically no modern musical taste untouched. While variations on punk rock remain Warped’s staple, this edition built in a lot of heavy metal, a decent amount of hip-hop, a dash of country courtesy of Lucero, and whatever it is you want to dub the twitchy power rock of Foxy Shazam.

Launched in 1994, the Warped Tour is a summer ritual that succeeds by nurturing its roots and paying attention to trends. Ska-punk vets Less Than Jake - who gave a kid a mohawk hair cut on stage - were a tether to Warped’s beginnings. Yet pop-punk purveyors The Wonder Years and melodic-core architects A Day to Remember clearly arrived with “favorite new band’’ status among attendees thronging their sets.

More than 70 bands played. The Winds of Plague’s thrash turned into the hazy hip-hop of Big B. And the offerings surpassed the “official’’ lineups. Who would have guessed ska legend Angelo Moore of Fishbone would sit in with reggae hybrid act Passafire? And Mansfield had a stage for local talent culled from the Break Thru performance contest.

The region was well represented throughout the festival. The Boston-bred Street Dogs, who announced from the stage their addition to the Dropkick Murphys’ Fenway Park concerts in September, put on a blistering display of working-class punk and drew a massive crowd to its sheltered stage as heavy rains temporarily moved in. The Acacia Strain from Western Massachusetts was perhaps the single heaviest act to shake the main stage area. And Bad Rabbits looked poised to break beyond Boston with its soulful, frenetic performance.

For sheer kicks, 3OH!3 is still a party band to be reckoned with, and the cheekily made up Black Veil Brides figured a way to update trashy Crue-style glam for the post-punk set.

While the impassioned punk of The Exposed sounded dramatically different from the twisted lyrical screeds unfurled by MC Lars and Weerd Science, at Warped you saw how such different styles could come from a shared place.

VANS WARPED TOUR At: Comcast Center, yesterday