VANS WARPED TOUR

When: 11 a.m. June 20
Where: Fairplex, 1101 W. McKinley Ave., Pomona
Tickets: $40 all ages
Information: 888-512-7469, www.vanswarpedtour.com

 Vans Warped Tour pre-party in Los Angeles gives concert peek

No April Fools, the Vans Warped Tour team offered the media an opportunity to meet some of the acts and music fans a chance to sample what will be on the bill for the 2014 festival event during a party at Club Nokia in Los Angeles April 1. Event founder Kevin Lyman said that there are 43 tour stops slated this year, including a new one in Ancorage, Alaska. Performances by more than 100 bands have been announced to as well.

A smattering of groups were on tap at the media conference held at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles prior to the party and among them was Echosmith.

This is the second time out on Vans Warped Tour for the Los Angeles indie pop band consisting of siblings, Graham, Sydney, Noah and Jamie Sierota.

“The best part is the community there with the fans and with the bands. It’s really cool because everyone’s friends and you know that ahead of time so it’s not like anybody thinks they’re better than each other,” Sydney Sierota said.

Echosmtih is still touring in support of its October 2013 album, “Talking Dreams” (Warner Bros. Records), and will continue on the road even after Warped Tour has put away its stages, the perky blonde lead vocalist and keyboardist said.

“We love the fans and we love the support and you guys are our friends. It’s really awesome to see it grow,” Sierota said.

Evan Pierce, who handles electronics for the Hollywood screamo and dupstep group Ghost Town, said this will be its first time out with Warped Tour, although he’s attended the festival previously.

“I liked being able to go on the side of the stage. It’s easier to go on the side of the stage and experience that, it’s not completely gated off,” Pierce said. “It’s more relaxed.”

Ghost Town made a splash with its 2013 release, “Party in the Graveyard” (Fueled By Ramen), and is teasing its next effort to its fans by leaking the new material on the Internet.

“We’re going to be putting out a song a week,” Pierce said.

Brian Dales of The Summer Set was catching a lot of camera action at the conference. The Scottsdale, Arizona pop rock vocalist’s charming looks matched his attitude as he bubbled about his third stint with Warped Tour.

“There’s such a camraderie between the bands, this tour is unlike anything else. The energy every night when the show is over and just being in each other’s company, barbecuing and hanging out. It’s less like a tour and a lot more like summer camp,” Dales said.

The Summer Set has been touring in support of its April 2013 effort, “Legendary” (Fearless Records) and is debating its next step.

“We’re on the fence as to whether we want to try to do another tour before the the year is over or if we want to put out another album. I’m leaning towards spending the fall working on new music,” Dales said and then had some words for his fans. “Thank you for the greatest year we could have ever had as a band in 2013... and all the support on ‘Legendary,’ that was very appreciated and I respect you.”

The Vans Warped Tour event continued with an all ages pre-party concert open to the public at Club Nokia featuring a taste of what will be offered at the festival.

Long Beach acoustic duo This Wild Life opened the show, with the crowd quickly singing along to their - obviously popular - smooth tunes, like “Pink Tie.”

Between tunes, lead vocalist Kevin Jordan told the crowd it had been a hard night, as their car’s axle broke on the way to the venue, causing them to miss the press conference. He had good news too, though, the band will be releasing the full-length effort, “Clouded,” on the Epitaph label in May.

Post hardcore rockers Secrets showed the audience how it’s done in San Diego- with pounding beats and vocals that switched from melodic singing to raspy beastial growls. During their high energy set, they encouraged fans to jump up and down and later to clap along, which the audience did happily.

“Thank you for coming out to our last show ever,” lead vocalist Aaron Melzer said. “April Fools.”

He then encouraged the audience to crowd surf and launched into the title song from 2013’s  “Fragile Figures” (Rise). Secrets ended its set with “Live Together, Die Alone.”

Rapper Wax (Michael Jones), originally from Maryland, wasted no time getting the grooves going and connecting with the crowd. A song into his set, he taught the willing audience the melody for the chorus of his next rap, “Dispensary Girl,” from his 2011 mixtape, “Scrublife.” He then told the back story to the tune.

Wax shared that he had moved to Los Angeles and was happy to be here because he could easily purchase marijuana. One afternoon, he was trying to work on his music, but couldn’t get going so he went to the local marijuana dispensary. A “beautiful hippie girl” was working the counter.

“I walked out of there and I had fallen in love, but I never saw her again,” Wax said.

The Vans Warped Tour pre-party concert also featured performances by San Francisco rapper Watsky, Japanese rockers One OK Rock, the Boston funk and R&B outfit Bad Rabbits and metalcore rockers Issues from Atlanta.

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