Deftones have cemented themselves as a top band in modern rock, with an evolving sound standing the test of time and trends.
A Band of Longevity
Formed all the way back in 1988 by mutual school friends in Sacramento, California, Deftones went on to create an exciting musical journey. Starting with the first full-length album Adrenaline in 1995, Deftones helped pave the way for the new alternative metal style of the late nineties, even incorporating a post-hardcore sound as well at times.
While many contemporary bands of that time have fallen by the wayside, Deftones went on to produce more mature eclectic material starting with the 2000 release, White Pony. The band continues in this spirit today, constantly reinventing itself. Here in no particular order are some of the band's highlights throughout the albums.
If you are a Deftones fan already, you may have your own personal favorites. This serves to highlight some of the more commercial and well-known songs of the band.
Lead Singer Chino Moreno
One of the high watermarks for the band would have to be ''Minerva'', off the self-titled album released in 2003. Although the album process was in the early stages of what the band calls the 'dark days', with member differences and delayed studio time, the album received praise and has gone on to be a fan favorite.
Featuring droning guitars, a hard-hitting back beat and uplifting lyrics and message, ''Minerva'' was the lead radio single off the album and still sounds as great as it did back when it was released. Lead singer Chino Moreno flexed his guitar chops more on this album as well, going from playing a few parts on White Pony to singing songs while playing guitar.
For many fans, the first exposure to Deftones came with the airing of the video for ''Bored'' on MTV, from the debut album Adrenaline. This song kicks off the album and lays the foundation of things to come from the band. With a catchy hook, one can not help but be drawn into the hypnotic vibe of this track.
This is an early Deftones classic that stands the test of time. There was a heavy rap-metal influence in early Deftones as well, especially with the songs ''7 Words" and "Engine #9'' off of the debut release.
Change (In The House Of Flies)
This is the band's highest-charting single, reaching number 3 on the Billboard rock chart in 2000. It was used for the Queen Of The Damned soundtrack and had an appearance in the film Little Nicky most notably. Definitely a fan favorite, it has a quite dynamic that bursts to a loud and edgy crescendo for the chorus, going back and forth in both dynamics the band does so well throughout the song.
It is said that this track inspired a breakthrough in the writing process for the album White Pony, released in 2000, pumping new inspiration into the band.
''Change (In The House Of Flies)'' video
Around The Fur, released in 1997, is another high-water mark for the band. It is here where Deftones really got their wings as far as writing and production. This was also the first effort to feature Frank Delgado on turntables and programming, later joining the band full-time in 1999.
While the album is well known for breakout songs such as "My Own Summer (Shove It)", the lead single, and "Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away)", ''Headup'' remains one of the bands heaviest offerings. With an insanely heavy groove and intense vocals, this track also features Max Cavalera of Soulfly/Sepultura fame.
For the creation of the 2006 album Saturday Night Wrist, the band was in their self-described "dark ages" a period wrought with infighting, creative differences, and personal problems. After the recording was finished, meetings were called, differences were resolved and the band decided to continue with renewed vigor.
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These new recording sessions in 2008 were for an album to be titled Eros but put on hold when bassist Chi Cheng, unfortunately, suffered an automobile accident, rendering him into a coma. The band was uncomfortable with continuing the project at the time and scrapped the album. There is still no timetable for the finish/release of the album, but the band did release the track ''Smile'' from the sessions in 2014.
Released in 2010, ''Diamond Eyes'' leads off the album of the same name as the title track. It was also the first radio single, released March 23rd, 2010. With Chi still unable to continue on bass for the band, Deftones enlisted Sergio Vega. Vega came aboard with quite the resume, playing in the legendary post-hardcore outfit, Quicksand. Sergio had also filled in for Chi on some dates during a 1999 tour.
Writing and recording clicked well for the new lineup, resulting in the album fairly quickly. This still remains the group's lineup today. The band was trying to create a loose and positive atmosphere for the creation of the album and writing, to help uplift the dark emotions from losing their fallen bandmate and friend Chi to a coma.
Sergio Vega Onstage
''Diamond Eyes'' video
Meet with critical acclaim, the 2012 effort Koi No Yokan debuted at number 11 on the Billboard 200 chart. Translated from a Japanese phrase, the album title Koi No Yokan means "premonition of love''. Furthering bassists Sergio Vegas input, the album is perhaps the strongest material from the band in years, in my humble opinion.
''Tempest'' has the band firing on all cylinder's, with strong vocals and the band's trademark quite to loud dynamics they do so well. The into has a spacey Pink Floyd feel to it, building its way up to full on rock crunch.
Released in 2016, the album Gore is definitely one of the bands most experimental albums in the catalog. One of the standout tracks is ''Phantom Bride'', which features lead guitar work from Jerry Cantrell of Alice In Chains fame. Gore was met with critical acclaim, with reviews noting its edgier, moody sound. For a full comprehension of its various nuances, the album requires repeat listens as the music demands to be dissected and taken apart.
It's a great ride, but one has to have an open mind and forget whatever preconceived notions they may have of the band. Sergio Vega also used a six string bass on some of the album, giving the band a different and dynamic sound which contributed some added depth.
''Phantom Bride'' video
Chi Cheng, Original Deftones Bass Player
More Information on Chi Cheng
© 2017 The Write Life
Kyriaki Chatzi on February 17, 2017:
Love, love, love!! Next to Nirvana, they are my favorite band!