When: Sat., July 20, 11 a.m. 2013
The Warped Tour reliably books a handful of bands that neither fit its image as a cartoonish mall-punk ghetto nor drive away the kids who came to see, say, Bowling for Soup. This year RDGLDGRN, a three-piece firmly rooted in boom-bap rap and punk, is one of them. Its recent single “Lootin’ in London” includes lyrics about Bad Brains and the D.C. punk scene (the band is from an outer D.C. suburb) rapped over a delightfully fuzzy guitar riff. Combining punk and rap is hardly novel, even on this scene (Minneapolis punk-rap artist P.O.S. is a Warped veteran), but RDGLDGRN colors its mix with bits of go-go, ska, and reggae, then siphons that concoction into a sleek and polished pop-rock sound. This year’s Red Gold Green EP (Universal Republic/Fairfax Recordings) has the glimmer of Top 40 radio, with contributions from Dave Grohl and the inescapable Pharrell Williams. But their star power isn’t the best thing about the EP—to my ears it’s the breezy, catchy guitar hook in “I Love Lamp,” which invites you to kick off your shoes and stretch out in the closest park. —Leor Galil RDGLDGRN play as part of Warped Tour. Set times and stage assignments are announced the day of the concert.