Many of us reflect back on the early 2000’s as a true golden age for the music that we love the most - the term “emo” hadn’t yet been bastardized by the mainstream, Drive-Thru Records was putting out release after release of foundational pop-punk, and no one had really thought yet to dress up a metalcore breakdown in guyliner. The Skate And Surf Festival, an annual celebration of these acts and genres, leveraged its way into legend status after only three full years of activity by compiling lineups of the best and most important bands of the time, many of which were in their heyday.
Some of those bands have created longstanding and solid careers, and to see a few of the groups that helped to shape such a noteworthy festival of great lore slotted to appear at it’s return is a really cool thing. We’ve selected some of the returners and highlighted their careers in the context of the Skate And Surf Festival’s existence to celebrate the permanence of our scene and reflect with a bit of nostalgia on what exactly some of our favorite bands were doing 10+ years ago.
POZ Skate And Surf Preview: Our Must-See Bands And Acts (Day 2)
POZ Skate And Surf Preview: Our Must-See Bands And Acts (Day 1)
Fall Out Boy, by Adrienne Fisher
2003: First appearance at Skate & Surf (April 25), release of Take This To Your Grave (Fueled by Ramen, May 6), finalize future signing to Island Records (mid-2003)
2004: Second appearance at Skate & Surf (April 18), release of My Heart Will Always Be the B-Side to My Tongue (Fueled by Ramen, May 18), first appearance on Warped Tour
2005-2008: Stupid amounts of commercial success, release of From Under the Cork Tree (Island Records, May 30, 2005), Infinity on High (Island Records, Feb 5, 2007), and Folie a Deux (Island Records, Dec 16, 2008)
2013: Prodigal return from hiatus, release of Save Rock and Roll (Island Records, April 16)
“Comeback of the year” is the catchphrase of FOB in 2013. Plenty has been spoken, ruminated, yelled, theorized, and waxed about the much-adored pop (punk) act’s return to the fold, and their prodigal return to a festival also making its prodigal return seems nothing short of harmonic. When FOB played Skate & Surf in 2003, Take This To Your Grave was still 2 weeks away from release and and their buzz was only beginning to increase in volume. By 2004, following a tour supporting Mest and Matchbook Romance, the band was still close enough to the underground to be flush with love from every kid involved in the scene, making the festival - once-exclusive to punk and emo - a perfect setting for them before their popularity began to expand outside the boundaries of those genres. Now, their appeal is as widespread as the lineup of this year’s Skate & Surf, making their headlining slot completely appropriate in both homage to the original festival and a salute to it’s current incarnation.
Bayside, by Adrienne Fisher
2001-2003: Formation, release of demos/split with Name Taken, sign to Victory Records (2003)
2004: Release of Sirens and Condolences (Victory Records, Jan 24), appearance at Skate & Surf (Apr 16)
2005: Appearance at Bamboozle (May 1), release of Bayside (Victory Records, Sep 1), passing of drummer John Holohan (October)
2006 - 2013: Release of many, many full-length records - The Walking Wounded (Victory Records, Feb 6, 2007), Shudder (Victory Records, Sept 20, 2008), Killing Time (Wind Up Records, Feb 22, 2011) - as well as splits, comps, Warped Tour stints, and a covers album
To state the obvious, Bayside’s been around for a long time by now. Hailing from Queens and siphoning off a little bit of that Long Island “scene” momentum, these New York natives were just starting to get their footing when Skate & Surf was operating back in the early 2000s. Their signing to Victory Records (which was totally not a bad thing back then) can probably be likened to their leg-up into the ranks of golden-era bands of the time, and their gradual entry into popularity fell very shortly after the heels of the old, golden-era bands. However, the momentum they began to create in 2004 with the release of their first full length hasn’t diminished in the last 10+ years - Bayside’s band trajectory is punctuated by consistent releases, frequent touring and oodles of high profile Warped Tour and festival appearances. They’ve created for themselves quite the legacy - and their slot at Skate & Surf can function as both a celebration of their beginnings as well as the continuation of a solid career.
Streetlight Manifesto, by Erik van Rheenen
2003: Everything Goes Numb is released, the band’s lineup changes start once their four song demo is recorded.
2004: Streetlight plays Skate & Surf with headliners Taking Back Sunday, Brand New, and Yellowcard.
2006: Catch-22’s Keasbey Nights (Victory Records) gets a Streetlight makeover, about which Kalnoky said, “We wanted to get it right for once.”
2007: Somewhere in the Between (Victory Records) comes out.
2010: Streetlight releases the first volume of their ambitious cover project, 99 Songs of Revolution (Victory Records). We’re still waiting on the next 88.
2013: Victory torpedoes Toh Kay’s The Hand That Thieves record, but Streetlight’s pre-hiatus swan song The Hands That Thieve sees daylight after label struggles kept it from coming out in 2012.