CD REVIEW: The Deftones
It's not often a band's fourth full-length release is self-titled. Then
again, it's not often a band like The Deftones comes along to revitalize
the stagnating nu-metal scene.
This much anticipated release from Chino Moreno and company is, in many
ways, a first: it features the debut of their newly added fifth member,
Frank Delgado, on keyboards and sampling. It's also the band's first release
since Chino's penchant for alcohol became a target of the mainstream media.
And of course, most importantly, it's the first time the band has depicted
a hideous, gaping skull on their album cover.
The newest offering from The Deftones demonstrates a definite musical
progression for the band, moving further away from the rawness of Adrenaline
and continuing forward on the more slickly-produced path first beaten
out by White Pony. Nonetheless, the album can be distinguished throughout
by The Deftones' trademark mix of haunting vocals and unforgiving riffs.
Unfortunately, one of the weaker songs ("Minerva") was chosen
as the first single, but its plodding pace is countered by the hard-driving
screams of tracks such as "Hexagram." Listeners will be transfixed
by Chino's hypnotic vocals in the quieter "Lucky You."