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Deftones @ Aragon Ballroom- October 23, 2012

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Alternative rock?  Art Rock?  Nu-Metal?  Call it what you want but the California based band the Deftones have been churning out album after album and stirring up millions of fans throughout the world for the past 18+ years.

The Deftones have kept up with the changing times in music as they refine their sound and get more inventive over time but keeping to their metal roots.  Diamond Eyes is a perfect example of how the band has matured musically.

Tuesday night at the steamy and humid Aragon Ballroom in Chicago was the scene for frontman Chino Moreno and his cohorts as they rocked for almost 2 hours.  The masses jam packed the floor thrashing to Moreno’s shrieking lyrics during the heavier cuts such as “7 Words” & “You’ve Seen the Butcher”  and sang along with his timely melodies like “Change (In the House of Flies)” throughout the night.   Not many frontmen possess as much on stage energy as Moreno has during his illustrious career.  As Moreno always does he was all over the stage, jumping off of stage set ups, running from side to side and playing up to the swarm of sweaty bodies.

The boys took a moment out to dedicate a song to Chi Cheng, the long time bassist who is still in recovery from a debilitating car accident almost 5 years ago.  At times you can hear the crowd wail “Chi” when there was a quiet moment or two.  Chi is never far from the hearts of the band or those who have followed the Deftones over the years.

Most alt-metal, rap-rock bands from the late 90’s and early 2000’s have lost their luster and aren’t as relevant as they once were.   The Deftones are upping the bar for themselves and their music and are looking to keep their momentum going for years to come.

Evan J. Thomas is a Chicago photographer & writer, you can see his work at www.evanjthomas.com  Follow Evan on Facebook & Twitter!

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