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Deftones - Another intimate night with the Deftones?
Back in 2006 I had my first, and ‘till yesterday only, live experience with the Deftones. They played in the relatively small venue Tivoli in Utrecht and they blew my brains out. The show was amazing, they played flawless and the audience loved it. Especially when you know the band likes to drink and smoke way too much when they’re in Holland, with their ultimate low at the 2001 edition of the Wâldrock festival, it was a remarkable gig.

When I heard they would be playing in Amsterdam this summer I had mixed feelings about going there. My live memories about Deftones were very positive and it would be nearly impossible to put on a show like 3 years ago. Also bass-player Chi Cheng was replaced by Sergio Vega due to the consequences of a car accident late 2008, Cheng fell into a coma and has not yet made significant process. Still some friends and I decided to go though.
Precisely at 20:30h the lights went off and the band was directed to the stage. A 2 hours show with its ups and downs and weakest link Chino Moreno was started. But let me start with some positive things, like replacement Sergio Vega. The guy did a great job by filling in the emptiness Cheng left behind. That Vega would take the bass duties upon him wasn’t a big surprise by the way. Due to the fact he’s a friend of the band and already played with them when Cheng left the band temporarily in ’99 the choice was rational. Drummer Abe Cunningham furthermore played like a wild animal and lead guitarist Stephan Carpenter and Frank Delgado (keyboards and turntables) were very decent.
The biggest annoyance was caused by front man Chino Moreno and some minor other things. Chino wasn’t totally wasted during the gig, but he wasn’t sober either. Due to his condition he was very unstable on stage. Especially in the beginning of the set he wasn’t tight, couldn’t sing the high notes and was mumbling in between the songs to his band members without paying attention to the audience. A couple of songs later he was joking with Cunningham and his drum kit and did he play the more mellow tracks flawless though. This was then just before he forgot about the tips and tricks that are given in the movie Anger Management, when he went furious at his roadie, resulting in some mic-throwing.
Besides Chino’s appearance, there were some minor facts that could have been better. The light show for example could have been better due to a technical mistake I guess (full red light with one lamp white, full green light with one yellow light, etc.) and also the set list wasn’t complete. The band started their set with ‘Feiticeira’ and it was packed with favorites like ‘My Own Summer’, ‘Beware’, ‘Around The Fur’, ‘Digital Bath’ and ‘7 Words’. Some songs were forgotten though, like for instance ‘Broke’. All in all I enjoyed watching the show, but in my opinion it was far from memorable and if this would be at a festival I would probably left halfway the set to catch some other act.