nine years ago this month, i went to catch a band from sacramento who were playing at the civic in wolverhampton, in support of their sophomore effort. the late 90’s was the era of nu-metal with the advent of bands like korn and limp bizkit. this (then) four-piece wasn’t really nu-metal as such but were they heavy as fcuk. on wednesday night, we traipsed down the rock city in nottingham for our first (proper) gig of the year. we went to see deftones play on a stage slightly larger than the broomhall centre.

i have to admit whilst i did buy the deftones’ current opus, only a couple of tunes stuck to mind. or was it one? the deftones have been a five-piece for a while now, with the addition of frank delgado. he’s been around for a while, if i am not mistaken, but it was not until a few years ago he was officially in.

the opener was mnemic, a danish band with real hard-hitting riffs and beats, who got onstage at about 8. sad to say, come song number 3 they sounded a tad same-ish and i began to lose interest. bloody solid band, otherwise. whilst waiting for the deftones to get onstage, i quickly fiddled around with my mate’s sony ericsson cameraphone. the last time i was here, we had to hand in our cameras, and tonight, they didn’t even ask. oh, well.

they got onstage belting out three numbers from around the fur, and started with lotion. i think. hahaha. the moshpit that brewed on the floor would put the one we saw last saturday to shame. it has been nine years, and if i wasn’t mistaken, every one looked bigger. stephen carpenter was this bear of a chap. with his beard and his long hair, all i saw was a ciggie sticking out. stephen had a few of his ESPs out. apart from the usual 6 and 7-stringers, he seemed to have one of ’em in camo like the old kamikazes. chi cheng’s bass tones were absolutely luscious. in fact watching them that night, all i was thinking was, “what should i make my custom ESP guitar look like” and “must get precision, must get precision”.

chino moreno was superb, up on the stage screaming his head off and occasionally doing the ‘alternative shuffle’ (the easiest dance, if you wanna call it that, you can do at a gig). and he now plays guitar! after doing a few old ones we were served staples from their current material like the sublime cherry waves and hole in the earth. i remembered they played minerva and i’m sure they also played korea. not forgetting the obligatory 7 words and back to school, and after a few more recent songs, they flippin’ played lhabia. heck, if i find the set list on google, i’ll put it up! they sounded as great as they did that evening in wolverhampton, and, man, were they tight.

you notice how it is with every rock subgenre, one band always stick out. the grunge era died when that bullet went through kurdt cobain’s skull, yet we still have pearl jam. when the likes of limp bizkit and the other late 90’s bandwagon-hoppers go the way of the dodo, i’m glad we see a band like the deftones still out there churning out great tunes and remain relevant to rock fans in this day and age.

Rock City, Nottingham 14.03.07 set: Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away) / My Own Summer (Shove It) / Lhabia / Feiticeira / Digital Bath / Knife Prty / Korea / Beware / Root / Nosebleed / Hole in the Earth / Xerces / Passenger / Around the Fur / Cherry Waves / Kimdracula / Bored / Minus Blindfold / [Encore] Change (In the House of Flies) / Back To School (Mini Maggit) / 7 Words


no apologies for the photo quality. until i have the N95, this will make do for now!