Warp ’17 Detour
Tuesday, July 4, 5 p.m.–midnight, $25–$30
Motorco Music Hall, Durham

If you stroll down to Fullsteam or Surf Club for a Fourth of July beer on Tuesday, you might look around and find yourself wondering, “Since when is there a Hot Topic on Rigsbee Avenue?”

There isn’t one, but there will be an invasion of six bands from Warped Tour, the mall-punk festival that has been skating around the country on sneaker money for twenty-two summers. Warp ’17 Detour at Motorco serves as an unofficial, last-minute substitute for the Warped Tour date in Wilmington, which fell apart after the festival and the city failed to reach an agreement.

Warped Tour ’17 was set to stop at Wilmington’s Legion Stadium on July 4 until it was suddenly cancelled on Thursday, five days before the show. According to a statement on the Warped Tour website, the festival hired Huka Productions of North Carolina, a subsidiary of New Orleans’s Huka Entertainment, to produce the event. But the City of Wilmington ultimately declined to enter a contract with the company, citing safety and logistical concerns about its plans for the venue. (Port City Daily has more details on how the negotiations broke down.) The festival will refund tickets for Wilmington or transfer them to other dates, such as the one in Charlotte on July 6.

“It is unfortunate we are unable to hold the Warped Tour at Legion Stadium as we had worked for months to try and make it happen,” Wilmington communications manager Malissa Talbert said in a statement. “However, events held at city facilities must be hosted by groups with the ability to provide safety for concertgoers as well as financial viability for ticket buyers. We hope we can host similar events here in the future.”

Warp ’17 Detour, which was announced the day after the cancellation, looks like an official offshoot at first glance. But there’s no mention of it on Warped Tour’s website; the flyer only alludes to the festival’s branding; and none of the nine bands scheduled for Wilmington will come to Durham, though the six featured bands are all on the Warped Tour roster elsewhere this year. Instead, it’s an independent production from Greensboro-based booking company Crank It Loud, which rose from the ashes of the Progressive Music Group a couple of years ago.

“When we saw the announcement of the Wilmington date being cancelled, we took the opportunity to reach out to agents about doing a last-minute show,” says Joel Collins, owner of Crank It Loud, which has handled bookings for many Warped Tour bands. “We are not affiliated with Warped Tour. We just have a solid relationship with most of the bands and booking agents.”

The all-ages show begins at five p.m. and ends before you turn into a pumpkin. It’s cheaper and more intimate than Warped Tour dates tend to be; tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door. You don’t get Hawthorne Heights (update: but they are playing aCrank It Loud-booked show at Motorco the next day), but you do get The Acacia Strain, with Counterparts, Knocked Loose, Silent Planet, Microwave, and The Gospel Youth. And, best of all, The Dickies won’t anywhere near it.