Many big names in the music industry have come from the United Kingdom, so it was no surprise when Boston Manor was announced to play a tour for some of the best musicians in the alternative music scene: Warped Tour.
Boston Manor is a five-piece Pop Punk group from the Blackpool, England. The band contains vocalist Henry Cox, bassist Dan Cunniff, guitarist Ash Wilson, guitarist Mike Cunniff, and drummer Jordan Pugh. They are signed to Pure Noise Records. Their latest release, Be Nothing., is available now. It features the band’s hit song “Laika”.
TPF caught up with Ash Wilson and Henry Cox of Boston Manor to talk about the ups and downs of Warped Tour and what was coming up next for the group.
Warped Tour does most of its shows inside the United States, so being from the UK, Boston Manor has never had the opportunity to go until now. After seeing videos of the tour and hearing about it from previous tour mates, the band was stoked to be able to be a part of the tour this summer.
“We grew up watching videos of Blink-182 playing Warped Tour,” said Henry Cox. “It’s always been this mysterious thing to British kids because no one really gets the opportunity to go.
“The last couple years, when we started being a band, and we started touring more, we toured with bands that had done Warped Tour. They would tell us all about it. We were definitely excited to do it. It’s been great; it’s been awesome.”
Although Boston Manor does not have as large of a fanbase here in the U.S. as they do in their home country, many festival-goers are showing up to see the band take the stage.
“Obviously, we’re newer here,” Cox said. “We’ve been touring the UK for a while and we’ve built up more of a following. But this tour has been brilliant. The response has been better than expected. We’ve a really great time.”
In addition to Boston Manor not being from the U.S., Ash Wilson pointed out that difference in crowds lies in the difference between Warped Tour and regular concert tours.
“I feel like Warped Tour shows are different to club shows because it draws a very mixed crowd,” Wilson said. “You could be playing to kids or adults. When you’re playing club shows, people are coming to see your band specifically. (At Warped Tour), you get kids that just wander past and they’re like ‘oh, this is quite good’, and they come back and go ‘I’ve never heard of you guys, but you’re sick’, and that’s always cool to hear.
Cox also stated that Warped Tour is different than what the band is used to because, in a way, the tour is competition for people’s attention.
“You have to work a bit harder as well because you’re competing,” he said. “I don’t want to use the word ‘competing’, but you are (competing) for kid’s attention when there are other bands playing.”
When asked what the best moment of the tour was, Cox and Wilson had difficulty coming up with an answer.
“We’ve done a lot of fun shit,” Cox said. “We’ve met so many great people and made so many good friends. And we’ve hung out with our friends. On our off days, we’ve been going to swimming holes, beach houses, we were lighting off fireworks on the Fourth of July, swimming in the Colorado River, and gambling in Vegas. All sorts of fun shit.
“And just hanging out every day. Everyone’s mates, and it’s a cliché thing that everyone says but you do make friends with people you would never normally run into. So that’s what is really cool.”
Warped Tour is a blast, but it also comes with hardships. There are many challenges that come with being on the road for months at a time.
“I think the biggest challenge is the endurance,” Wilson said. “At the beginning, we we’re like ‘yeah, this is sick’ and we were having such a good time, but after a while, after you don’t have a day off in a long time, it’s exhausting. It’s amazing and I’m always having a good time, but at the same time it is exhausting. You end up aching all the time, and your sleep pattern changes.”
At the time of the interview, Warped Tour had not had an off day in approximately three weeks. While that may seem normal when talking about touring, Cox said to keep in mind that Warped Tour is an all day event.
“Normally on club tours, the ‘work’ starts at three in the afternoon when you load in,” he said. “You can chill in the mornings. You get down time here because you’re hanging out a lot, but you have to wake up early because you could be playing first thing or you could be playing at nine o’clock at night. So you just have to be up all day.”
And because the band is from the UK, playing an outdoor tour during the hot, American summer has been difficult.
“For us, the heat has been a bit challenging because it’s been fucking hot, and we’re not used to that,” Cox said.
Regardless of the challenges, Wilson and Cox believe Warped Tour is worth it.
During Warped Tour, Fearless Records dropped the new Punk Goes Pop album. For Punk Goes Pop Vol.7, Boston Manor covered the popular Twenty One Pilots song “Heathens”.
“I had a great time doing it,” Cox said. “I loved how it turned out. It was fun. We’ve never really covered a song before.”
Before deciding on a song, Boston Manor received a list of possible covers they could do. They weren’t satisfied with many of the songs, so after a friend of Cox’s introduced him to Twenty One Pilots, Boston Manor scrapped the list and chose to cover “Heathens” instead.
“It was really fun to just work on it in the studio and see how weird we could make it,” Wilson said.
Warped Tour is now in its final week. For fans who could not make it out to see Boston Manor, do not worry. The band has a lot of upcoming things in store.
They are going to back to the UK and will be playing the Reading and Leeds Festival.
“This is a huge milestone for us,” said Wilson. “I used to go every year back when I was in high school.”
They are also doing a festival in Germany. Boston Manor will be back in the U.S. this fall on tour.
And after that, they plan to begin writing album number two.
To keep up with Boston Manor, follow them on social media. Stay tuned, TPF has more Warped Tour coverage coming up!