Bamboozle Guide, part one
by Festivals

With this year's Bamboozle Festival boasting its most eclectic lineup yet, your friends here at Punknews saw fit to craft a guide of sorts to Asbury Park's biggest party. We're cool like that. Here's a list of must-see acts for Sat., May 19. Doors are at 2 p.m., so bring your dancing shoes. Check back tomorrow for a preview of Sun., May 20. As for the Friday show… go see Skrillex. I hear he's big with the kids.

The guys in Anti-Flag are super good dudes who just so happen to rip through some tasty, angry politipunk tunes. Last time I saw them in concert, Justin Sane saved a kid who was having an asthma attack. This time, the life they save could be your own! Or, ya know, not. —Joe Pelone The Dear Hunter
Opulent rockers the Dear Hunter just played an epic show at the Somerville Theatre where they performed the entirety of 2011's nine-EP, 36-song The Color Spectrum. So if there's a deep track from one of those conceptually colorful EPs you wanted to hear, go see their set and try shouting it out. At the very least, frontman Casey Crescenzo has no "We didn't practice that one!" alibi. —Brian Shultz Foo Fighters
By the time Foo Fighters take to the main stage at the end of Saturday night, they'll probably be the only band playing. So your choice would be to either beat the traffic leaving Asbury Park, or let your final set of the day be taken over by arguably the most consistent "singles" band of the last two decades. I'll probably be doing the latter, but hell, you should at least watch them play "Everlong" before you high-tail it home, right? One of their concerts alone is usually more pricey. —Brian Shultz Hot Water Music
Hot Water Music's first tri-state appearances in some time really culminate with their sold-out show at the Blender Theater at Gramercy with Iron Chic and Daytrader the following Monday. But we take it you probably don't have a ticket to that, in which case you should get over to whatever stage HWM might be appearing on Saturday and join the rare sect of Bamboozle with beards, beer guts and button-up plaid shirts and holler along to punk classics from the last 15 years like "Rooftops" and "Wayfarer"--as well as get a nice sampling of how the tracks off their new album, Exister, fare live. —Brian Shultz Jimmy Eat World
Can you believe Bleed American is over 10 years old? Me either! This band isn’t one for stage banter, but you can rest assured they’ll use all their time playing the songs we love. It’s going to be a really great moment when Davey von Bohlen of the Promise Ring joins them on stage for "A Praise Chorus." Someone take pictures for me. —Kira Wisniewski Less Than Jake
Everything gets better when you sprinkle in some Less Than Jake. You get ska. You get punx. You get songs about Johnny Quest and Pez. They could exclusively play material from any one of their albums (well, maybe not In With the Out Crowd…) and it would be the best, clam flammit. —Joe Pelone Powerglove
Hells yeah Powerglove! Video game metal all up in your stupid face! This is basically what it sounds like in the brains of 12-year-old boys across the United States of America. Better brush up on your air guitar and get ready to button mash like a mid-level boss.—Joe Pelone The Promise Ring
Let’s be honest: so many of these bands in this lineup owe at least a little bit to the Promise Ring. No one does Midwest emo quite like they do. Davey and the boys may have gotten a little older, but these reunion shows have been nothing short of absolutely delightful. It’s sweet, sweet nostalgia that just tastes so good. Let’s just all hope they play "Red Paint" while you’re drinking (to to two) cherry cokes. —Kira Wisniewski The Protomen
I almost don’t want to hype the Protomen, because this retro ’80s power rock band works best as a WTF surprise jam. Combining Survivor’s energy with Meat Loaf’s bravado, the Protomen (un?)ironically have the rockin’ chops to make you come alive. The idea that this band will share space with the Dear Hunter and My Children My Bride has me very, very excited. —Joe Pelone Boysetsfire
Boysetsfire comes out of the woodwork for another set of reunion appearances. The last time I saw them it was a raucous time at the Studio @ Webster Hall, with the crowd going apeshit for the post-hardcore heroes. It should be interesting to see them back at a festival setting in the U.S. where they used to dominate these sort of circuits. They seemed to have as much energy as ever at that show, so I take it they'll be ripping a bigger stage here to shreds yet again. —Brian Shultz