Live Reviews

LIVE REVIEW: Deftones, Grandson, O2 Forum Kentish Town, 13/06/2022

There was a massive dilemma going down in London Town on June 13th 2022. Down at O2 Forum in Kentish Town, 90’s nu-metal trailblazers Deftones were performing a special exclusive intimate show post their main stage performance at this year’s Download Festival, returning to the hallowed grounds of Donnington just days before. The other gig causing a difficult decision wishing you could be in two places at once is Spiritbox, an atmospherically stunning metalcore band who have sent shockwaves through the alternative music scene, especially since dropping their debut album Eternal Blue back in 2021 and were on the first night of their two sold-out headliners down at O2 Academy Islington post their packed-out performance at Download Festival too. 

However, if you are in the lucky few who were down at Deftones on the Monday and going to see Spiritbox on the Tuesday, then you are in this very fortunate situation, witnessing for tonight, the mighty Sacramento, Grammy Award winners Deftones blast the roof off O2 Forum Kentish Town with their balance of hushed beautiful vocals and guitar riff brutality, one that has not toned down since the 90’s and never should it ever tone down in the decades that followed and the decades still to come as long as this band continue their always deserves domination.  

Having already been heaped praise on by Deftones themselves, Grandson is the hits the nail on the heads answer to a support act for Deftones. Taking elements that amalgamate rock, electro and hip-hop and throws them into a lyrical pot that unapologetically confronts paramount social issues right in the face, Grandson’s ambition exhibited throughout his set, which included material from his debut album Death Of An Optimist, Grandson presented a harsh reality to Kentish Town, but one in which you could reclaim power and gain authority from live. 

Getting started on a newer note in comparison to the nine-album deep discography that laces Deftones’ three-decade long career, Ohms favourite Genesis gets proceedings underway for this super special exclusive Deftones headliner. Chino Moreno welcomes in London with defying screams and so does the London audience welcome the Sacramento four-piece with defying screams right back at the vocalist. 

Perhaps two of Deftones most instantly iconic tracks get their live airing at the O2 Forum. The first, Be Quiet And Drive (Far Away), taken from the band’s second ever studio album Around The Fur which induces the biggest pit of the night so far, the songs crushing nu-metal drums paired with the alluring nature of Moreno’s drawn out vocals ignited some kind of nu-metal meets shoegaze fire in that very pit. The second, My Own Summer (Shove It), again taken from the band’s second studio album helpsthe shoegaze-tinged metal party continued to rage on, with some added brutal screams and general instrumental clamour keeping this ‘97 era of Deftones alive and kicking with Deftones in ‘22. 

The more subdued and slinkier Sextape preludes yet another Deftones commercial success story of a song, Change (In The House Of Flies). Certainly, one of the big live hitters of the night and an immense crowd pleaser, Change (In The House Of Flies) has the scale, size and strength to shake the bones of 80,000 people in a packed-out stadium, so its bone breaking effect down at the 2,300 cap Forum in Kentish Town was one executed to earth shattering effect.   

Throwing it back to the days of debut album Deftones in contrast to their latest LP song that opened the special show, 7 Words taken from the band’s first ever full-length Adrenaline does exactly that, Shaking the adrenaline levels of the audience for one last time, Deftones’ dirty distorted bass, dingy vocals and hardcore-sque energy proves that even all these years later from said debut, Deftones are a band of sheer magnitude, force and power, something that isn’t dying away anytime soon after that night down at O2 Forum Kentish Town. 


Written by: Katie Conway-Flood

Katie Conway-Flood
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