The 2011 Bamboozle Festival: Best One Yet?
Can you feel the anticipation, New Jersey? This year’s installment of The Bamboozle Festival (Friday April 29-Sunday May 1) is poised to be the best one yet. Simply put, the 9th annual weekend on the Meadowlands parking lot of East Rutherford features something for everyone.
We’ll start with day one, for instance: Traditionally known as the “Hoodwink” night of the festival, the Friday portion is infamous for its trickery. Throughout the years, numerous bands have come on stage after being previously billed under strange names or with altered lineups featuring special guests or playing their entire set dedicated to another band’s music. This year will be no exception.
New York City punk rock legend Marky Ramone will join New Found Glory as they rip through an all Ramones set (The two artists will again join forces the next day, performing original NFG material). Other surprise acts include the band Rad Bromance, who play only Lady Gaga songs. Who knows what could go down when they go on stage?
The headliners for the first night feature teen-girl favorites 30 Seconds To Mars and breakthrough stoner-rapper Wiz Khalifa. However, Boyz II Men, Chiddy Bang & LMFAO are all out to prove that the headliners aren’t the only ones worth seeing.
On to day two (Saturday the 30th), and we have the rock fan’s delight. It’s gonna be loud early and often as veteran alternative artists dominate the schedule from around noon until well past 10pm.
Bands of note who are set to perform before the sun goes down are: Dashboard Confessional, Plain White T’s, Alkaline Trio, Circa Survive, State Radio (ft. former members of Dispatch), English solo-acoustic rocker Frank Turner, Garden State horned-punk stalwarts Streetlight Manifesto & RX Bandits, who will be playing one of the first shows of their last tour together as a band.
Local rock fans (which certainly includes myself) will truly have their moment in the sun long after it sets, though, as unlikely Jersey rags-to-riches story, The Gaslight Anthem & emo innovators Taking Back Sunday of Long Island play the last two sets of the night.
When I stated earlier that Bamboozle has “something for everyone”, I really had day three in mind. You want star power? Alright, how about Grammy-nominee Bruno Mars. You want something for the Q104.3, classic-rock crowd? How does a good old fashioned Motley Crue performance sound? The newly crowned “it” punk band? Stand up, A Day To Remember.
Finally, we are obliged to have a wild, foul-mouthed, tattooed up, trouble making, lyrical genius & hip hop legend as our final act of the festival. And that man is none other than Lil Wayne.
Even if none of the aforementioned artists are your cup of tea, I would strongly recommend going at least one of the three days for the seemingly hundreds of no-name bands playing on various small stages throughout the weekend. You just never know who will have that memorable performance (Did you know that now successful artists like Paramore & the Jonas Brothers played the Bamboozle way back when in front of merely a few dozen spectators before they broke out years later?).
The Bamboozle Festival has not disappointed New Jersey yet, and with a lineup such as this year’s, we won’t have to worry about a letdown any time soon.