July 6, 2017
Deftones came to the Concord Pavilion on Thursday night armed with a devastating setlist that spanned their entire career, mixing bone crushing material from their early period along with the spacey atmospherics of their latest release, 2016’s Gore. The set opened with a crushing rendition of “Headup,” a song that relied on the brute force of guitarist Stephen Carpenter’s punishing guitar chug while singer Chino Moreno screamed overhead.
This trend continued as the band immediately tore into “My Own Summer (Shove it),” another brooding track based around Carpenter’s massive guitar riffs and anchored by a driving bassline from Sergio Vega. Moreno dawned a guitar for the next song, “Swerve City,” working in a bit of melody sandwiched between the mammoth guitar riffs.
The intensity was greatly dialed down following this as the band played the fan-favorite “Digital Bath” from the White Pony album. The song was centered on a complex series of drum beats from Cunningham and spacey synth work from Frank Delgado. It was the first demonstration of Moreno’s substantial command of atmosphere, dialing back the intensity of his vocals and throwing in a great deal of melody into the mix.
A few songs later Deftones rolled out another crushing song, “Diamond Eyes.” Like many classic Deftones songs, the track is anchored by a simple yet evocative guitar figure from Carpenter, who made use of his massive eight-string guitar to give the song depth as Moreno howled over top.
Following this were two decidedly downbeat songs: the swirling “Sextape” and the ethereal “Phantom Bride.” Both songs are based around simple yet memorable guitar parts drenched in echo. Moreno even got the chance to show off his guitar skills on “Phantom Bride,” taking on the song’s challenging guitar solo. The remainder of the show alternated between the band’s two extremes: dreamy echo drenched alt-rock and bone crushing metal.
After thanking the fans for turning out, Moreno queued the band into their first ever single, “Bored.” As has been the case for their entire career, the song is grounded in a simplistic yet memorable guitar riff, gradually picking up steam. Halfway through the song Moreno leapt into the audience with his mic in hand, screaming in the faces of the audience members. It was a cathartic way to end the set and a powerful night of music.
However, just when the band appeared to finish the song they immediately went into another old cut, the caustic “Teething,” a bouncing slice of aggression that really riled up the crowd. It was a fitting way to close out a fantastic night of live music and it showed once again that Deftones continue to be one of the most impressive live bands in the metal scene.
Rise Against brought their anthemic take on hardcore punk to the stage to open the night up, bursting out of the gates with the hard-charging “Ready to Fall.” Driven by a lockstep drum and bass groove from Brandon Barnes and Joe Principe, the song is a total anthem, especially when Tim McIlrath’s strong vocals kicked in.
Rise Against wasted no time in ripping through the next 13 songs, many of which were taken from their latest release, Wolves. Both McIlrath and lead guitarist Zach Blair sounded fantastic, blending hard edged power chords with plenty of intricate picking patters, giving each song plenty of weight and depth.
The most powerful and touching moment came halfway through the set as McIlrath gave an impassioned speech about the current state of political affairs in the country and the need to everyone in the audience to take part in bringing about change.
This lead directly into the touching ballad “People Live Here,” which saw McIlrath alone on stage singing and playing guitar. The band finished out their set with the rousing “Savior,” one of their breakthrough singles. Riding another sturdy set of metal-tinged guitar riffs, the song is a gripping slab of rock. As was the case the whole night, McIlrath shined throughout, delivering plenty of anthemic vocal lines, particularly during the explosive chorus. It was a fitting way for the group to close out their set and psych up the massive crowd for the rest of the show.
Setlist: Headup | My Own Summer (Shove It) | Swerve City | Digital Bath | Elite | Diamond Eyes | Sextape | Phantom Bride | Knife Prty | Change (In the House of Flies) | Back to School (Mini Maggit) | Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away) | Rocket Skates | Rosemary | Bored | Teething
For more information about Deftones, check out their website.
Setlist: Ready to Fall | The Good Left Undone | Re-Education (Through Labor) | Satellite | The Violence | Help Is on the Way | Give It All | Welcome to the Breakdown | Survive | People Live Here | Wolves | Prayer of the Refugee | Savior
Find out more about Rise Against here.