Coronavirus: Kiwi bands devastated after opening slots axed for Deftones, My Chemical Romance amid pandemic

News of the upcoming My Chemical Romance and Deftones shows in New Zealand being postponed has not only disappointed fans, but devastated the Kiwi musicians who were set to open for them. 

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, both shows have been delayed to as-yet unknown dates. Promoters have advised punters will either be able to use their tickets for the rescheduled shows, or get a refund. 

For the home-grown acts who were days away from performing in some of the biggest gigs of their careers when the news broke, things are not so straightforward. 

Local pop-rockers Midnight Youth were set to reunite for the first time in seven years later this month to support My Chemical Romance at Western Springs, along with punk quartet Miss June. 

"It's a bad dream that I'm hoping to wake up from soon," Jeremy Redmore, Midnight Youth's frontman told Newshub. 

In the middle of releasing his solo album and rehearsing to perform for 20,000 people, Redmore says it's an indication the whole music industry could be "completely screwed" for the next few months. 

Midnight Youth in 2010.
Midnight Youth in 2010. Photo credit: Getty

Redmore said that while postponing the sold-out show is a "totally rational" step to take as a promoter or band, the situation feels like a "wedding being cancelled". 

"All your friends and family are coming from all over the place to see you play and with a click of the fingers all their plans have to be torn up," he said. 

"That sickens me." 

Meanwhile, Deftones were set to be joined over the weekend by New Zealand instrumental post-metal outfit Mothra and Kiwi hard rock supergroup City of Souls. 

Hugh Allan, Mothra's guitarist, said the band "couldn't quite believe it" when Deftones' booking agent told them lead singer Chino Moreno had requested their availability. 

"We are all big Deftones fans since way back in the '90s," Allan said. 

"They are definitely a big influence on our sound, particularly for me as a guitarist." 

Allan said they were "elated" to have nabbed an opening slot at the Trusts Arena gig, but that soon turned to "extreme disappointment". 

Mothra's guitarist Hugh Allan with Deftones in 2003.
Mothra's guitarist Hugh Allan with Deftones in 2003. Photo credit: Supplied

"Bands are cancelling their tours all over the world, which is completely understandable," he added. 

"Going ahead with large concerts and gatherings has become a big risk and it seems like maybe this is only the beginning." 

Still, both Mothra and Midnight Youth remain optimistic the show will go on.

"We've been told it will still happen at some point, and to stay alive till then!" Redmore said. 

"I think those involved will work super hard to make that happen." 

Allan said Mothra, who are finishing up their next album, still intends to play a smaller gig, scheduled for April 11 at Auckland's Ding Dong Lounge. Whether or not the Government will move to put restrictions on those kinds of events, as is the case in some European cities, remains to be seen. 

New Zealand instrumental post-metal outfit Mothra.
New Zealand instrumental post-metal outfit Mothra. Photo credit: Supplied

Redmore, who has recently released a solo album called The Brightest Flame, made the difficult decision to axe all his upcoming shows. 

"I just don't feel comfortable gathering people together right now, plus it's a massive financial risk that I can't afford to take," Redmore said. 

Instead, he intends to continue to push his music online, potentially via live streaming on his Instagram page @jeremyredmore.