Saturday, July 2, 2011

Deftones & The Dillinger Escape Plan @ The Palladium, Hollywood. 6/10/11.

The Dillinger Escape Plan is my favorite band. Period. They announced they were going on tour with the Deftones earlier this year and I damn near shat myself. So yeah, I was stoked about this show for a long while. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get the day off from work like I planned making it a mission to try and get to the Palladium on time. Also, I was already damn tired before the show even started. I didn't care though, I was going to be as close as possible for DEP's opening set come hell or high water.

Teri from Le Butcherettes @ a different show
As it turns out, there was another band opening the show called Le Butcherettes. A genuinely awesome spazz rock band from Mexico, I knew they weren't going to suck when I caught Chino from Deftones and Jeff from Dillinger eagerly awaiting the band's entrance from the side of the stage. Le Butcherettes packs a lot of power for trio, but their frontwoman and apparent band leader deserves the most accolades. Singing, dancing, playing guitar & keyboard, crowd surfing. She did it all. I'm used to sweaty dudes landing on my face when I go to shows, her jumping on me was a nice change of pace.

The time had come. Dillinger was next. Surrounded by a few other metal dorks near the front, I went nuts as my favorite band of bros took the stage. They opened with "Farewell, Mona Lisa" off their latest record, Option Paralysis, and all was right with the world. The thing about Dillinger is that they're a strange band. Most of their old material is full on, raging technical (and I mean bust out your graphing calculator) metal. A lot of their new stuff is still complex but has more of a rock 'n' roll vibe that the average Joe can bob their head too. Regardless of what they're playing, The Dillinger Escape Plan's live performances are always "intense" to say the least. With little regard for their own safety, the members of DEP flail and jump around not only the stage, but often entire venues like satanic acrobats. There's usually lots of bruises, blood and smashed instruments at the end of a Dillinger Escape Plan show.

Ben from DEP in the crowd
Since they were limited to an opening slot, the band toned down the extreme tunes in their repertoire and played mostly newer material like "Milk Lizard," "Black Bubblegum," "Chinese Whispers," and "Gold Teeth On a Bum." Numerous Deftones fans seemed to get their groove on during these Dillinger crowd pleasers. That wasn't the case when they'd switch back to their vintage psycho jams. I heard some lady behind us complaining during the always amphetamine like "Panasonic Youth" that "this crap is too hardcore" and leaving to get a beer. Her loss though. The band ended the night with the back to back onslaught of "Sunshine the Werewolf" and "43% Burnt." Something happened during "Sunshine," some Pavlovian instinct was triggered and before I knew it I tossed my video camera down to my girlfriend and crowd surfed over to Dillinger's singer Greg, who jumped into the audience looking for some folks to help him sing along.  It was awesome. They ended the night jumping off their monitors and smashing their instruments across the stage LIKE A BOSS.

(skip to the 7:20 mark...sound is kind of bogus =/ )
They got a pretty wicked ovation from the Deftones crowd. Mission accomplished guys.

Immediately after Dillinger finished the chants for "DEFTONES!" and "CHINO!" began. The crowd started to surge forward and the body heat index rose dramatically. I was already tired from work, and had just sweated to the oldies with my pals DEP. I needed water and air conditioning stat. We retreated to the safety of the snack bar and regrouped. I knew this meant losing our pristine spot near the stage but I didn't care anymore at this point. Besides, there is nothing worse at a concert than drunk "normies." Regular people who only go to a few big shows a year (if that) and get super wasted while doing so. There's a certain etiquette you learn in the underground metal scene. I've seen sweaty Mongoloids in the pit at a Suffocation show act more politely than 9-5 office types who get super belligerent at their one concert experience of the decade. It's super annoying and kind of scary when there's thousands of them in one giant room.

So the Deftones came out and as expected, the Palladium went bonkers. They opened with the title track of their latest album, "Diamond Eyes," and that opening guitar riff was easily the loudest thing I've heard since Pig Destroyer blew my ear drums out @ the Knitting Factory in 09'. All the normies started pushing and hassling each other. Bumping into girlfriends and spilled beers are bound to happen folks. Live and let live I say. Anyways, the band was super fired up. Touring with Tasmanian Devils like DEP and Le Butcherettes must have put Deftones on the offensive. Chino (Deftones' singer and patron saint for all Mexican rock fans in Southern California) ran around like a man possessed, utilizing the stage ramps and allowing us poor souls in the back to see what was going on up there. His voice was top notch as well. Last time I saw Deftones was in 2003 when they opened for Metallica and unfortunately, they and Chino especially, sounded horrible. Luckily tonight they came with their A+ game.
blurry Deftones are blurry
The bands's setlist was packed with new songs off Diamond Eyes and old school tracks from their debut, Adrenaline. Personally, I dig the Deftones more ethereal side. The trippy, spaced out crooning is what I'm there for. So when they played modern era tracks like "Minerva," "Sex Tape" and "Digital Bath" I was stoked. The apeshit Nu Metal jamz like "Engine no. 9" and "7 Words" didn't do much for me, but all the normies straight up LOVED it. I wish I could see the Deftones in a smaller venue, where all of Abe Cunningham's ghostnotes on the drum's wouldn't be lost in a sea/mix of snare and bass drum. Even from way in the back, it was easy to see the dude was murdering his drums with serious gusto.

My two highlights of the night were the special duets Chino did with Teri from Le Butcherettes and Greg from DEP on "Knife Party" and "Passenger." I wish I would have kept my spot near the front for these two performances alone. Oh wells. Can't believe they played "Knife Party." So awesome. haha. All three bands put on stellar performances. I'm glad I was exposed to Le Butcherettes and plan on keeping my eye on them. I'm glad I could support the mighty Dillinger Escape Plan and that they won over such a massive audience. I'm glad Chino and co. totally erased that bad experience from Metallica's Summer Sanitarium II tour from my memory with this awesome headlining spot. I'm just glad.


  1. Sounds like a freakin epic concert, makes me want to book some =3

    Great post, sounds like you had a really good time

  2. how great!! it's always magical when you have that super concert of a band you love!
    i'm happy to hear that Deftones are bringing their game up live; knife party and passenger are god songs :]
    and i got a little curious regarding Le Butcherettes!
    great post.

  3. that sounded like a lot of fun.
    how long did you sleep when you finally arrived home?

  4. seems like a weird combo but I Love DEP - sounds like a great concert

  5. It must have been a spectacular show !

  6. Just browsing through. Great blog.

  7. I never heard of that band before, but the songs seem to be pretty good. :D

    And congrats on over 400 followers!

  8. Sounds like you had a hell of a time - always the mark of a good concert.

  9. to be honest, thats the deftones for you

  10. Reminds me of the KROQ Weenie Roast. Cool blog btw, followed!

  11. I think that only because of you, I'd go see Dillinger. You should feel proud about that because 2 months ago if they came I would've missed it.

    Also, love how you call those "normies". Far as etiquette goes though, if the bands suck it's officially time to drink.

  12. good stuff! tdep looked intense