The second annual Dia de los Deftones music festival took over San Diego’s Petco Park this past Saturday. Deftones again headlined the event and curated the eclectic lineup featuring CHVRCHES, Gojira, Megan Thee Stallion, JPEGMAFIA, Hum, Youth Code, and Brutus.
Each band had its time to shine as there was no overlap between the sets. The site featured Deftones’ craft beer (brewed by Belching Beaver), multiple food vendors, an Ofrenda altar, and plenty of sprawl space.
Belgian post-hardcore trio Brutus opened the Calaveras stage with a fantastic set that’s sure to gain them some new fans. Those in attendance were mesmerized by Stefanie Mannaerts’ dual role as drummer and vocalist, which was complemented by Peter Mulder’s growling bass lines and Stijn Vanhoegaerden’s post-rock guitar tones.
Hardcore electronic duo Youth Code played an angsty 7-track set on the same stage. Composed of Sara Taylor and Ryan George, the duo opened with an intense performance of industrial single “Anagnorisis.” Their set also included new track “Puzzle.”
First to the All Souls stage, Megan Thee Stallion brought some heat, some fun, and all the ass. The Houston-based rapper entertained the unsuspecting crowd with her signature twerking, empowering banter, and latex-adorned dancers.
Back on the second stage, Illinois space-rockers Hum treated diehards with their new song “Desert Rambler” as well as singles “Stars” and “Comin’ Home.” Hum’s 1995 album You’d Prefer an Astronaut inspired the wall-of-sound production and minimalist cover art for Deftones’ critically acclaimed album White Pony.
French metal band Gojira was met with much anticipation. From their most recent album Magma, the band played “Silvera,” “The Cell,” and crowd pleaser “Stranded.” In true metal fashion, the band’s explosive and impressively tight set featured smoke machines, perfectly-timed CO2 cannons, and intricate visuals throughout. Frontman Joe Duplantier had complete command over the audience, staring them down and urging them to rock out. Drummer Mario Duplantier teased the crowd with the intro to Deftones’ infamous “Digital Bath” before concluding the band’s set with “The Gift of Guilt” from their 2012 album L’Enfant Sauvage.
The energy continued on the second stage with experimental rapper JPEGMAFIA, who was quick to disrobe and jump over the barricade into the fan-filled crowd. It didn’t take long for a frenzied mosh pit to form. Many sang along and moshed with the Baltimore rapper during his captivating set.
Opening for Deftones on the main stage was Scottish synth-pop group CHVRCHES. The band’s set highlighted their entire discography, but largely centered around tracks from their most recent effort Love is Dead, including “Get Out” and “Never Say Die.” From their first album, the band played “Bury It” and single “Leave a Trace.” Despite being met with a few unwelcoming members in the audience, vocalist Lauren Mayberry and the rest of the band put on a dazzling show.
Finally, the moment everyone had been waiting for, Deftones walked onto the stage to a roaring audience. The band opened with deep cut “Rickets” before immediately diving into “Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away)” and “MX” — all from the their second album Around the Fur. Their set encapsulated most of their career, but noticeably excluded tracks from Gore, Saturday Night Wrist, and the band’s self-titled album. The band surprised the crowd with rarities like “Prince” and “Romantic Dreams.” They also treated fans to a live debut of “Smile” from the band’s shelved album Eros. Dressed in all black, frontman Chino Moreno dedicated the song to the group’s founding bassist Chi Cheng. Overall, Deftones sounded energized and performed in top form. The band is currently working on their ninth studio album which is due out next year.