Deftones + Coheed & Cambria @ Birmingham Academy, 20th November 2010


2010 has definitely been Deftones year, having released one of the albums of the year in the form of Diamond Eyes Deftones are without a doubt back on the top of their game. Their bassist Chi may still be in a coma but it has seemed to make them more determined and spirits seem to be high in the Deftones camp.


The house lights go down and the speakers blast out the music from the film Inception introducing to the stage Coheed and Cambria. They receive a warm if slightly subdued reaction from the Birmingham crowd. Fronted by Claudio Sanchez who spends the majority of the set obscured by his trademark massively huge hair making any connection with the crowd difficult. As far as the music goes, their alternative rock sounds huge, songs like Ten Speed (Of God’s Blood And Burial) and In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3 fill the room. Claudio’s distinctive voice rings out but the backing vocals can’t be heard at all. They close with Welcome Home and with Claudio playing a double-headed guitar it’s the highlight of the set but the general performance falls slightly flat.


It’s all about Deftones tonight though and the near sold-out crowd is more than ready for them. The room is hot and even standing on the outskirts of the dance floor I can feel sweat beading on my forehead and they haven’t even come on stage yet. The roar that greets the band as they run onto the stage is deafening and heading straight into Rocket Skates Chino Moreno takes charge of the evening running up and down a purpose built runway which gives even the shorter members of the crowd a great view.

My Own Summer (Shove It) has the crowd take the lyrics to heart as when Chino screams ‘Shove it’ they really go for it even the people on the edges are getting in on the action. When the intro to Back to School (Mini Maggit) starts up it definitely takes the crowd by surprise as it’s rarely played live but it takes only a few seconds for everyone to catch on and the words are screamed back at Chino. The Academy is like a sweatbox and with all the running around on stage and singing on the barrier Chino is dripping with sweat his black shirt stuck to him, it eventually comes off leaving him shirtless and showing off his new svelte physique.


The middle of set is a chance for the crowd to hear the new material live, Diamond Eyes as a record is amazing but live it takes on a completely new dimension. Chino’s vocals are powerful and emotive and shine through on Diamond Eyes and the slower more ambient Sextape. Before they blast out Passenger Chino takes time to address the audience saying he has a tear in his eye and his deadly serious and from what they have accomplished as a band I’m not surprised he got a little emotional. After Passenger the rest of the band leave the stage leaving guitarist Stephen Carpenter and bassist Sergio Vega who jam out a cool riff, it may seem like the end of the show but with the crowd baying for more Chino and the rest of the band grace the stage once more for the encore. The inclusion of Birthmark, Engine No. 9 and 7 Words is a definite treat for the old-school fans going back as far 1995 and their first album Adrenaline.


Tonight’s performance has been nothing short of amazing, an epic 23 song set mixing in the new with the old seamlessly is no mean feat but Deftones absolutely killed it.

Reviewer – Hannah Sebestjanowicz
Photographer – Steve Gerrard

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