Deftones / letlive. / Three Trapped Tigers – Brixton Academy [20/02/2013]

By Tom Aylott

Later tonight, renowned trailblazers Deftones are set to take London by storm once again at a sold out O2 Brixton Academy – this time off the back of their strong latest album ‘Koi No Yokan’.

Handpicked opening act Three Trapped Tigers fill the slot perfectly tonight, performing an outstanding set of signature instrumental noise-rock so flawless it could have easily been pre-recorded. Melodic, imaginative and somewhat booming, TTT have mastered the art of lyric-free storytelling, carrying the audience through peaks and troughs of their narrative. Their set consisted of everything that is great with British music, and will hopefully explode their cult status as the year goes on.

Tonight, letlive. brought an altogether different flavour to Brixton Academy. In the wake of the pure and addictive openers, their set came across more than a little contrived. If on-cue crowd surfing didn’t quite nail it, then the tired leaps and twirls across the stage or vocalist Jason Butler cuddling the mic like a terrified child clutches their favourite Care Bear definitely did. Fortunately, Butler foetal positioned himself back to some sort of normality in time for the finale – a smashing of a brand new Fender in classic “Rock n roll” fashion.

Still, onwards and upwards, and there is really not much that can be said that has not been said before when it comes to Deftones. They were, quite simply, perfect. Drawing mainly from Koi No Yokan and Diamond Eyes – but not forgetting heritage tracks like Be Quiet And Drive (Far Away), My Own Summer (Shove It) and Change (In The House Of Flies) – the band charged through set not just comprised of bangers, but fan favourites too.

On the whole, the band were in good spirits and Moreno, cool as ever, engaged in a jovial hat toss, gulps of apple juice and Harry Styles for Topman anecdotes, still managing to retain the title of “Coolest Motherfucker Alive”.

Soulful and soothing, Deftones played a powerhouse show that was whole heartedly enjoyable and – if tonight is anything to go by – then this is with their fingers firmly on the pulse even after decades together. They still forge the path that others try to tread, and put almost all of them to shame.