Team Sleep are loud. Really loud. Probably the loudest 'quiet' band you've ever heard.
The band throw out grooves other bands would kill for and when they lock together they make a sound like demolition.
No matter what they sounded like Team Sleep would've won tonights crowd over but supporting band Idiot Pilot are fighting that battle from first note to last. Y'see no one in Idiot Pilot is Chino Moreno.
For a two piece the band max out the volume just as well as the headliners but rather than building to their crescendos they commit sudden stop starts of drum machine and screams. If you need a reference point, think Radiohead but think Martin Grech rather than Muse.
Towards the end of their set most of the crowd is nodding its head and the band seem to be having fun and happy to be making friends. Hopefully friends who will buy their records.
As a parting shot one of the skinny duo extols the virtues of the Team Sleep album and asks how many people have it. In the middle of a sold out Mean Fiddler maybe 30 people raise their hands.
And there's the rub...
Most everyone seems to be here for a quick Deftones fix rather than a headfirst dive into something altogether new. After Idiot Pilot's dramatic and unexpectedly fantastic turn you feel were it not for Chino Moreno's prescence the running order tonight would be the other way around. Team Sleep have a lot to prove.
And they are by no means perfect- the drums clatter and jar, loose jams come off without point or promise and Rob Crow's beautiful vocal additions are inaudible, which on a song like 'Our Ride to the Rectory' is criminal.
However, they are special. Chino is as an engaging frontman as always and his band feel cohesive and familiar- a far cry from a bunch of hired hands. The songs feel louder, heavier even, and perfect moments like Chino's wail on the beginning of 'Red Skull' are there to be savoured.
Those looking for some Deftones adrenaline get it, but those looking for something more find that too. Tonight was about a good band playing good songs and what else is there.
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