Deftones – Koi No Yokan

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Deftones
Koi No Yokan
Warner Bros

Deftones return towards the end of 2012 in arguably as strong a position as they’ve ever been; tragic and tentative is their bassist Chi Cheng’s plight that its almost as though he’s driving the rest of the band to achieve greater things – having dropped the incomparable ‘Diamond Eyes‘ in 2010, the question on many people’s lips is how exactly do Deftones top that? The answer is simply that the band likely aren’t concerned with making ‘Diamond Eyes II‘; instead, ‘Koi No Yokan‘ is a perfect snapshot of the band in the present day, still remarkably and effortlessly unique amongst their peers.

Things start with the straight ahead anthemic stormer ‘Swerve City’, in which you can see Chino Moreno’s ‘oh-oh-oh-ohhhhhh‘s becoming a staple of their live shows should it be included in the setlist. It’s got a nice bouncing groove that propels the song along its journey.

I’ve always believed that any truly good album, let alone any truly good Deftones album, is underpinned by those few songs that stand out above the rest – those songs that can push a good album into being a great album, or a great album into a potential future classic. ‘Koi No Yokan‘ is no different in this approach; ‘Romantic Dreams’ is another soaring, storming anthem in the making; the haunting ‘Entombed’,breathes slowly on a pulsing electronic beat, before exploding to life in the chorus, and ‘Tempest’ is seemingly Moreno’s call to the apocalypse (Turning in circles/been caught in a stasis/the ancient arrival/cut to the end‘).

There’s plenty of those trademarks shifts between bloody riffs and melodic breaks throughout the album too, and still as pitch perfect as ever. The album’s title is a Japanese phrase roughly translating as ‘love at first sight’. I feel ‘Koi No Yokan‘ is more of a grower at first, but as I said near the top, comparing it to previous work is a little futile – everyone will have their own take. Will this go down as the best Deftones album yet? I’m not sure it will, but let’s be grateful that despite the trauma, we’re witness to the glory years of this band.

Peter Clegg

Deftones – Tempest

Buy ‘Koi No Yokan‘ here

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