They're the shows you begged your parents to buy you tickets for, the ones you camped out and traveled for, the ones that allowed you to see something totally new, or totally awesome. 2013's early winter and spring tours weren't half shabby. Here are our picks for the best shows of the year.


Spring Fever Tour: All Time Low, Pierce The Veil, Mayday Parade and You Me At Six

Spring Fever Tour 2013 | Alternative Press

“All Time Low, Pierce The Veil, You Me At Six and Mayday Parade… what more could you ask for? This was the most fun tour I've been to in a while. The bands were amazing, the set lists were spectacular and the crowd was so high energy. Also, the constant stream of funny and amazing pictures from the tour photographer Adam Elmakias was great!” --RaeAnne Harris

“Hands down, one of the best tours I've ever seen. It completely worked because the fanbases are literally exactly the same. All the bands put on such good shows, so even if the fanbases weren't the same, the show was still overly fantastic.” –Rachel Duax



Straight up, I would rather hang out at a scrap-metal reclamation facility than witness another acoustic set by a band that ply their trade dealing with decibels and extremity. Having established that, the Acoustic Basement tour changed my point of view significantly. The package was an outgrowth of the Acoustic Basement stage founder/musician Brian Marquis put together for last year's Warped Tour. Last spring's tour featured the participation of Geoff Rickly (ex-Thursday), Vinnie Caruana (the Movielife, I Am The Avalanche), Koji, A Loss For Words and Marquis himself, all delivering a wide scope of personal idiosyncrasies, techniques and emotions during their respective sets. Amid the pleasant surprises (Marquis covering Jawbreaker, Rickly covering Usher with some electronic noise thrown in), I had an epiphany: It's not that I didn't particularly care for acoustic sets, I just don't want to hear them from people who genuinely have nothing to offer. It is to Marquis' credit that he curated a tour focused around some defined musical personalities, instead of guys who wanted to tour the country without lifting heavy amps or further damaging their hearing. Marquis' Basement and Chuck Ragan's Revival Tour raise the bar for unplugged punks on both sides of the stage, elevating the acousti-punk concept to something far greater than half-assed open-mic nights. --Jason Pettigrew

MINDLESS SELF INDULGENCE How I Learned To Stop Giving A Shit And Love Mindless Self Indulgence tour

Death Spells, the electronic hardcore project of James Dewees and Frank Iero, made their live debut opening for Mindless Self Indulgence on the East Coast dates on their spring tour. Editor in chief Jason Pettigrew and I were so eager to see them upset their audience that, armed with hopes of upside-down crosses and crying teenagers, we roadtripped from Cleveland to Buffalo, New York to pay witness to Death Spells’ third gig, ever. It was my first time seeing MSI, as well, which was so excellent that when they hit Cleveland, I went in for a second round of the “four mothafuckas.” --Cassie Whitt


This package tour included three of my favorite up-and-coming artists in punk right now, and two female vocalists, too—something this scene desperately needs more of. (And less dude-bros atonally yelling vague lyrics about pain and overcoming said pain, too, while we're making requests.) It played Cleveland on Easter, but that didn't stop people from showing up en masse and having a whole lotta sing-alongs. Plus, I executed a pretty successful heckle of Allison Weiss and from that, we've become internet buddies, which is even more fun. --Scott Heisel


“East coast, this is the last waltz.” “The end is near.” “The grand finale.” When Texas Is The Reason announced they were reuniting for a small U.S. tour, they made one thing clear: This would be their last run. I took that as sign to get my ticket or spend the rest of my life wishing I had. I never experienced Texas Is The Reason the first time around, mainly because I was eight years old. When they walked onstage at the Black Cat in Washington, D.C., the overwhelming excitement was palpable in the audience. Concerts often feel like community experiences, and when it’s the crowd’s last time seeing a band, that vibe is even stronger. The best part about TITR’s short career is their small catalog so they were able to play all their songs, including the previously unreleased “Every Little Girls Dream” and “When Rock ’N’ Roll Was Just A Baby.” They closed with “A Jack With One Eye,” and during the repeated refrain of “Your place is still at the heart of my everything,” I seriously worried I would tear up. Fortunately I didn’t, but if I had, I bet I wouldn’t have been alone. Whether you were a newcomer or longtime fan, it was the last time for all of us. --Brittany Moseley


Appetizing package tours were once commonplace, but being a fan of every band playing seems to be a thing of the past. The Wonder Years were this half-year's exception to the rule, stacking their support with some of the best pop-punk bands around. This tour meant business; there wasn't even a local act included. At the end of the night, everyone in the venue had witnessed something special that doesn't happen enough anymore. --Brian Kraus


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