Deftones - Koi No Yokan (Cover Artwork)


Deftones: Koi No YokanKoi No Yokan (2012)
Warner Music Group

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:

Contributed by: eatdogseatdogs
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Staring over the band photo on the back of Deftones new album, Koi No Yokon, it's nice that they look normal. Nothing to hide. Still, it's hard to believe these guys have been around for almost 25 years when most of their peers have either faded into obscurity or became Dubstep impersonators. What's.
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Staring over the band photo on the back of Deftones new album, Koi No Yokon, it's nice that they look normal. Nothing to hide. Still, it's hard to believe these guys have been around for almost 25 years when most of their peers have either faded into obscurity or became Dubstep impersonators. What's remarkable about Deftones is that they fail to unimpress. With each new release the band becomes more aware and refined. Koi No Yokan is their best work since White Pony.

The music created by Deftones seems to live in its own paradox. How can a band achieve a higher level with each new release? Why can't more artists do the same thing? What's keeping those from breaking their own boundaries and expressing more than the sum of their parts?

Going back to their 2010 release Diamond Eyes, Deftones charged forward with an album full of reactions and consequences when faced with harsh reality. It was a wake-up call not only for the band, but for the fans as well. It was personal, sometimes dreadful, and yet satisfying all in the same. For what the band went through from around 2003 to 2010, it's hopefully a humbling experience.

With Koi No Yokan, the amalgamation of Deftones' finest traits is finally met. There's the hushed vocal mumblings from Adrenaline, the heaviness of Around the Fur, the euphoria of White Pony, the rawness of self-titled, the atmosphere of Saturday Night Wrist and finally, the groove and steadiness of Diamond Eyes.

Opening track "Swerve City" explodes with riff-heavy bombing and mellow vocals from frontman Chino Moreno. He's on point and it's never a dull moment when he sings. "Romantic Dreams" comes second and it's an album highlight. The arrangement of the chorus is effective in a very catchy way with highs and lows accompanied by the nice ebb and flow of the guitars from Stephan Carpenter and Moreno. Lyrically, this is some of the most upbeat and loving of the band. In contrast to some angry parts, the optimism and desire of the words chosen is a nice reflection of Moreno's life. This segues nicely into the meaning of the album title, which is a Japanese term for the feeling that a relationship will evolve into love after the first meeting.

Another album highlight is the transition from song-to-song. Things fade into the other only to be immediately picked up and let down in a swoop. "Romantic Dreams" leads into the heaviest track on the album, "Leathers," with desperate back-and-forth vocals giving the song an emotional depth of the Grand Canyon. "Poltergeist" is another heavy fling courtesy of Sergio Vega on bass and Abe Cunningham's drumming, while "Entombed" has a flair for lo-fi production and Team Sleepiness thanks to Frank Delgado's minimalist approach.

If the first half of the album was a rolling journey, then the second half is a vacuum in space. Epic tracks such as "Tempest," with its lyrical awakening (for Chi Cheng perhaps?), and "Rosemary," in of itself a case of mystic realms; separate the rest of the album with more atmosphere and complex arrangements. It's a thrilling ride into the stratosphere only to come back down calmly and straightforward with closer, "What Happened to You?"

And there you go. Deftones finish off 2012 with a creation that's been lurking in the deep. Time doesn't need to tell us anymore about the band. Everything that's been said has been said. Right now it's just nice to know that they are still with us and still thinking, still living, still creating‚?¶


People who liked this also liked:
Deftones - White PonyThe Gaslight Anthem - The '59 SoundThe Menzingers - Chamberlain WaitsBaroness - Yellow & GreenDeftones - Diamond EyesBad Religion - True NorthThe Flatliners - CavalcadeDeftones - Around the FurThursday - No DevoluciónBalance and Composure - Separation

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
paulTAMAYOmurderedTUPAC (December 19, 2012)

This album is really good. i was suprised.

sleepwalker (December 9, 2012)

New revised list!!

White Pony = Diamond Eyes > Koi No Yokan > SNW > S/T = Around the Fur > Adrenaline

OffspringKickAss (November 29, 2012)

First Deftones album, I ever listened to and it kicked ass all the way. Great record, now I need to catch up.

VanceMook (November 20, 2012)

I think Eros would have been their sixth album, because Diamond Eyes was recorded after Cheng's accident, and I;m also pretty sure the band has stated before that they don't want to release it until Chi recovers. Either way, the last I knew he had been making progress, so I'm excited to hear their "experimental" side and wish Chi and the band well. The Deftones are always consistent if not excellent, I think this album is a nice culmination of their trademarks. It's better than SWY, probably ties with Around The Fur and self-titled for me, while White Pony and Diamond Eyes still lead the pack. I STILL need to get ahold of Adrenaline.

eatdogs (November 19, 2012)

oh yeah i wanted to mention that their seventh album is actually the one called EROS and so technically Koi No Yokan is their eighth album. EROS was the last album that Chi Cheng worked on and apparently it was completed before they shelved it. the buzz around it was that it was an angry album that was recorded sort of quickly. it still might be coming out here sometime withing the next year.

paulrulzdood (November 19, 2012)

looking forward to giving this a spin on the drive home today. I'll go into it expecting more of a SNW than a Diamond Eyes.

White Pony>Diamond Eyes>Saturday Night Wrist>Deftones>Around the Fur>Adrenaline


eatdogs (November 19, 2012)

thanks sleepwalker for the comment.

sheesh, it's been a while since i've written a music review. back in april i hit a wall and nothing coming out sounded good so i stopped listening to music. deftones were an acception since they're one of my favorite bands. but dang, since then all i have been doing is collecting super nintendo reproduction carts and reading...

nothing about 2012 has impressed me all that much except for one album and that was awkward breeds by the sidekicks. i recall thinking, "nothing is going to top this." and of course nothing has topped that. awkward breeds is my album of 2012.

oh, and just to do it because it seems fun, here:

White Pony > Around the Fur > Saturday Night Wrist > Koi No Yokan > Adrenaline > Diamond Eyes > Self Titled

i-type-poorly (November 17, 2012)

I do not understand people who hate SNW. That album was everything I wanted Deftones to be.

I think Tempest is the only really excellent song on this. The first two songs are awful. I never would have expected Chino to write a chorus as tired and generic as the one in "Romantic Dreams". The rest of the album is alright, though.

tenwestchaser (November 17, 2012)

Totally agree about SNW and Goon Squad. Been really soaking the album in and that one has stuck out to me the most. Great song. Gauze is pretty awesome too.

sleepwalker (November 17, 2012)

Also: this was a nice review. Good job. I know this album is going to be a grower and will probably rise higher in my ranking. "Goon Squad" is a very cool song that no one seems to be mentioning yet...

sleepwalker (November 17, 2012)

It's a very good record, but in the way that it's Deftones and they just make great music. I like a lot, and there isn't a bad song by a mile, but it is not grabbing me like everything else has. And why do so many people have problems with SNW?

Just for fun, I'll throw in too:

Diamond Eyes = White Pong > Deftones > SNW > AtF = Koi > Adrenaline

danperrone (November 16, 2012)

white pony is my favorite deftones album, followed closely by diamond eyes.

tenwestchaser (November 16, 2012)

Did anyone else see the needle drop review for this? I feel like mr. Fantano summed it up quite well. My initial spins have left me thinking...business as usual. Which is dissapointing after the greatness of DE.

Dude/dudette below me, your ranking is almost identical to my own. Accept SNW. Love it. super underrated IMO. For me:

ATF > DE > SNW > WP > ST > KNY (at this point anyway) > Adrenaline

extrakonami (November 16, 2012)

I'd say it's comparable to SNW as it's been taking some time to get into, but the more I listen, the more I find things to like about it. I still haven't warmed up to SNW.

And just for fun... ATF > Diamond > Deftones > Pony > KNY > SNW > Adrenaline

spoon_of_grimbo (November 16, 2012)

after a few listens, i'd say this is up there with white pony and diamond eyes. good shit.

thus_spoke_sean (November 16, 2012)

only listened 1.5 times so far, but I was a little disappointed. Especially with how much I loved Diamond Eyes. Mainly it's the guitar parts of this record that just do not grab me. The riff for the chorus of Romantic Dreams is down right bad. Hoping that this grows on me but for initial impressions I'd put it with Saturday Night Wrist as the worst of their catalog.

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