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Album Review
Deftones - Koi No Yokan Album Cover

Deftones - Koi No Yokan

Reviewed by
9.0
DeftonesKoi No Yokan
Record Label: Reprise Records
Release Date: November 12th, 2012
This may sound blasphemous to a lot of people, but I’ve never listened to California alternative metal / experimental rock band Deftones in my life; I’ve heard of them for a long time, but I was never interested enough to listen to them. Well, thanks to a few reviews that I’ve read about the band’s new album Koi No Yokan, I was curious enough to pick up a copy. In all honesty, I’m glad I did, because it’s one of the best albums I’ve picked up all year. I don’t listen to a lot of metal, but aside from a few bands (and new albums those bands have released this year), this is a band I can say I’m a new fan of. The most interesting thing, though, is I have nothing to compare this to, because I am a new fan. So, this is a review from a guy who’s never listened to this band, except for this album. I have nothing to compare this to, so I don’t have any expectations at all. Regardless, this is an amazing record; vocalist Chino Moreno has such an interesting voice that brings to mind vocalists like Claudio Sanchez (of Coheed and Cambria, whom also released a new album, which I have not listened to yet, sadly) and Tommy Giles (of Between the Buried and Me). Their voices are so ethereal, and they have a sound all of their own. Moreno’s voice is just so eerie and haunting, but in the best way possible. Of course, the rest of the band is important, too. One thing worth mentioning is that this is the second album not featuring bassist Chi Cheng, who was in a terrible car accident in 2008; instead, Sergio Vega has been filling in for Cheng. Regardless, guitarist Stephen Carpenter and keyboardist Frank Delgado also take the stage for the album, too. They both provide very interesting tones for the album. Deftones are a band that I’ve thought of more than just metal – they’re punk, experimental, progressive rock, and art rock, among others. That’s why I enjoy this album so much, because there’s so much I can take from it. My favorite albums are ones that challenge me, whether it’s lyrically or musically. This album does both.

The album starts off with “Swerve City,” and it’s the shortest song on the album at under 3 minutes. It doesn’t take long for the song to start, though. After a nice little guitar intro by guitarist Stephen Carpenter, Moreno’s vocals kick in, and they’re absolutely amazing, honestly. His voice is so relaxing, and ultimately, he (along with the rest of the band) sends me (or the listener) on a musical journey. “Swerve City” is just the first step in the 51-minute record. This song does sort of set the tone for the whole record, but it’s a great tone, at that. Next track, “Romantic Dreams” continues what “Swerve City” started, but Moreno also throws out some really interesting “screams,” if you can call them that. They’re more like shrieks, or yelps, even. Regardless, it certainly adds to his vocal performance. Every single member of the band works well together, and everything just sounds so great together. Moreno’s lyrics are also something to marvel at as well. In “Romantic Dreams,” he keeps saying, “I wish this night would never end,” and in a way, that’s how I felt when I listened to this album for the first time. I wish the experience would never end, and in a way, I’m glad the album is 51 minutes. At the end of the song, the tempo changes slowly, and a really “groovy” instrumental is used here. Third track “Leathers” is a track that the band released on their website for free awhile back and I wish I had known about this because this track is great. It starts off quite slowly, and it’s haunting even, but suddenly, Moreno and co. explode out of nowhere, and the song picks up. He screeches again until the choruses and the chorus is huge, honestly. This is one of the best tracks on the record, but every track is truly great on this record; this is one of those rare albums where every track is awesome.

I try to avoid reviews where I mention every track, but sometimes, I can’t help it, especially with an album as great as this one. Fourth track “Poltergeist,” is one of my favorite tracks on here, too; it starts with really cool clapping, something I’ve never heard before, honestly. The cool thing is the clapping appears again within the song, and it makes it much more entertaining. Combined with the rhythms of guitarist Stephen Carpenter, drummer Abe Cunningham, keyboardist Frank Delgado, and bassist Sergio Vega, Moreno absolutely kills it on this track. His voice is haunting yet beautiful all at once. That chorus is absolutely fantastic, too. While the album is great, this leads me to the one problem I have with Koi No Yokan – its sounds way too repetitive at times. While their sound is great, it sounds way too similar throughout. There are songs where there is some variety, like “Poltergeist,” for instance. The handclapping in the song is great. Another moment is on seventh track “Tempest.” The song begins quite slowly, and just has a really haunting feel to it. It’s really cool, basically. It’s also the second longest song on the album as well at six minutes. The longest is ninth track “Rosemary,” which is also my favorite track on the record; this track is so different, and it’s also the longest, at seven minutes. It’s a beautiful and haunting track, and certainly one of the best tracks I’ve heard all year. After the great “Goon Squad,” comes the album closer, “What Happened to You?” This is wonderful song as well, but it also serves as a nice closing track, too. There’s a really cool drum rhythm that serves as the backbone of the track, and the whole track just flows together. It’s so cool. It ends on the same drum rhythm that it started with, too.

Honestly, this is one of the best albums of the year, hands down. I’m really new to this band, but I absolutely adore them already. This is a great album, because it’s much more than metal; there are lots of things to take from this album, and the more I listen to it, the more I love it. The only downsides I have to this is that one, the album does sound quite similar throughout itself, except for a few tracks, and those tracks to provide a good contrast. The other downside I have is the production. As a whole, it’s not too bad, but honestly, it’s not that great, either. It’s just rather average. It doesn’t really hinder my enjoyment of it, but it can bother someone who does care about production a lot. Regardless, this is not an album to miss.

Recommended If You Like Anything by Deftones, “nu-metal,” experimental, music that challenges the listener mentally and emotionally, etc.


Additional Information
Track Listing:
1. Swerve City
2. Romantic Dreams
3. Leathers
4. Poltergeist
5. Entombed
6. Graphic Nature
7. Tempest
8. Gauze
9. Rosemary
10. Goon Squad
11. What Happened to You?

Deftones is:
Chino Moreno – lead vocals, guitar
Stephen Carpenter – lead guitar
Abe Cunningham – drums
Frank Delgado – turntables, keyboards, samples
Sergio Vega – bass guitar



www.facebook.com/deftones
This review is a user submitted review from justbradley. You can see all of justbradley's submitted reviews here.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 6 of 6
07:51 AM on 11/24/12
#2
princessjinifer
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Very good review. It has got me wanting to listen to this band now.
I am just like you, where I have not heard anything by them prior me writing this comment, but I look forward to hearing something by them now. Thanks! :)
07:22 PM on 11/24/12
#3
justbradley
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Very good review. It has got me wanting to listen to this band now.
I am just like you, where I have not heard anything by them prior me writing this comment, but I look forward to hearing something by them now. Thanks! :)
Thank you! This is one of my favorite reviews, because I think I captured my thoughts on it perfectly. You're welcome! And I hope you do like them. Haha.
09:04 AM on 11/27/12
#4
princessjinifer
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Thank you! This is one of my favorite reviews, because I think I captured my thoughts on it perfectly. You're welcome! And I hope you do like them. Haha.
I didn't have the time to really soak it in. I will have to give it a few more listens and I will tell you what I think of it (:
11:33 AM on 11/27/12
#5
justbradley
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I didn't have the time to really soak it in. I will have to give it a few more listens and I will tell you what I think of it (:
That's usually what I do when I write a review. I listen to the album a few times to really soak it into my mind, and then I write my thoughts on it as I'm listening to it again, because when I can hear it while I'm writing it, I can pause it to write about anything I notice. But I'd definitely like to hear your thoughts, because I really liked this album a lot, and I wasn't even a fan before I got it.

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