GIG REVIEW: DEFTONES Live at Freedom Hill Amphitheatre, Sterling Heights, MI
August 12th 2016, rain and heat couldn’t keep thousands of metal fans from showing up to see a rock show featuring headliners, Deftones. I myself had quite an ordeal just to make it to the show. Having car trouble caused a delay in my arrival, missing the first two bands, Spotlights and Refused.
I arrived when Refused was just about finished with their set, I was bummed I didn’t get to see or photograph them but they sounded good. Waiting for Deftones to hit the stage was a building climax. After the car trouble issue and learning I wasn’t allowed to shoot from the photo pit, I was hoping Deftones would turn my day around.
Kicking their show off with, “Rocket Skates”, the first of a 20 song set lasting over an hour and 45 minutes, the crowd was brought right up to speed on how the night was going to go. Playing chill-heavy songs from their nearly 30 year history, the crowd had a lot to cheer for. The band was in great form as Cheno Moreno’s unique vocals wailed as the crowd pumped fists and jumped to the beat as he ran around from side to side and even doing a bit of crowd surfing. Stephen Carpenter on lead guitar was quite stationary but his hair blew around as if he was moving a thousand miles an hour. Abe Cunningham kept the beat going on drums. Frank Delgado filled the sound gaps with his keyboards, sampling and turntables, and Sergio Vega on bass guitar was a spark plug as he kept the crowd pumped as he moved methodically around the stage.
Live music is always an experience and usually a great one and for the young girl that Cheno pulled up onstage to help him sing a song, that moment will forever be remembered and shows how much Deftones cares about their fans. Cheno even took a moment to mention that it was his dad’s birthday and took it even farther by including the fans on video call wishing pops a happy birthday. Moments like this, is why I am a concert junkie. Live music and the experience with it reminds you that life is precious. Enjoy the music you like and be thankful and make time for friends and family. I’m thankful for my sister for picking me up after my car died and I’m thankful for my dad for letting me use his vehicle so I could make it to this show. I’m even thankful for the venue staff for allowing me to shoot in the pit amongst the fans, even though I was mad, disheartened and felt insulted, I rolled with it and did what I could to capture the moments.
With so many great songs being played, from the classics “My Own Summer”, ”Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away)” and “Bored” to new and lesser played songs including “Prince” which was dedicated to late band member Chi Cheng and the music artist Prince, the night was full of music for the audience to feast on and enjoy. My crappy day ended on a good note. Thanks to Deftones for a wonderful evening of rock music, good times and the reminder of what’s important in life.