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Deftones are a multi-platinum selling, Grammy award winning rock band from Sacramento, California. The band consists of Chino Moreno (vocals, guitar), Stephen Carpenter (guitar), Abe Cunningham (drums), Chi Cheng (bass) and turntablist/keyboardist/sampler player Frank Delgado.

The Deftones have often been praised as one of the more innovative and unique nu-metal bands of recent years. Moreno's poetic lyrics--described by a Time magazine critic as "furiously intelligent"--are often evocative, yet sparse enough to allow for multiple interpretations, and sometimes make startling use of wordplay. Moreno has cited Morrissey, The Cure's Robert Smith and Depeche Mode's David Gahan among his favorite singers, and beyond an occasional similarity in vocal technique, these singers' sweeping sense of drama and delicate vulnerability is often evident in Moreno's vocals.


Early Career

The founding members of the band met while skateboarding, and their first rehearsals together took place in 1989-1990 while they were in high school; among their early songs was a cover of Danzig's "Twist Of Cain". Cheng joined after their original bassist left.

Carpenter was struck by a drunk driver; this tragedy became a benefit when Carpenter received a large insurance settlement, and was able to buy some expensive, high-quality equipment for the band.

Deftones enjoyed the early sponsorship of local favorites Korn, with whom they shared a fan community drawn largely from skateboarders.


They signed to Maverick Records, which is owned by Madonna, in 1994 and released their debut album, Adrenaline, the following year. The album sold well, and earned mostly positive reviews. "Bored" was a minor hit. Delgado was not yet a member, but he performed on several songs.

One review of '"Adrenaline" noted Cunningham's "surprisingly sophisticated drumming" and wrote that "Unlike many of their contemporaries, the Deftones are very controlled even in the midst of chaos." [1] (

About this time, Deftones stopped touring and collaborating with bands like Korn. This was due in part to the fact that Deftones were often lumped into the then-emerging genre of nu-metal. Though Deftones were only tangentially associated with nu metal, they feared the increasingly negative use of the term and separated themselves from other such groups, both professionally and aesthetically.

Around The Fur

Around The Fur was released in 1997. It also sold well, and included a collaboration with frontman Max Cavalera of Sepultura and Soulfly on "Headup," a tribute to Max's late step-son Dana Wells. "My Own Summer" and "Be Quiet and Drive" were hits, the latter's music video earned significant play on MTV.

Delgado again appeared on several songs, and demonstrated his deft, inventive touch at a time when turntable scratching was in danger of becoming a nu metal cliche.

"Be Quiet And Drive" was performed acoustic with Incubus frontman Brandom Boyd and Adam Sandler for the "Little Nicky" soundtrack. This mellow version with a new trip-hop-esque beat by Delgado inspired vocalist Chino Moreno to expand on softer music, which eventually lead to his side project Team Sleep.

White Pony

In 2000, the band's third album, White Pony, was released. It is generally considered by fans to be Deftones' most mature recording.

Delgado was now a full-time band member, and he added greatly to the atmospheric album. Reviews were overwhelmingly positive, noting Moreno's increasing sophistication as a lyricist and singer, and the group's bold experimentalism: The fragile "Teenager", for example, incorporates elements of glitch and trip hop, with programming duties carried out by friend and Team Sleep bandmate, DJ Crook, aka, "Crookone". ("Teenager" was originally a Team Sleep song.) "Knife Party" features a stunning, Diamanda Galás-like vocal performance by Rodleen. A collaboration with singer Maynard James Keenan of Tool on "Passenger" is a highlight.

Of White Pony, one review wrote, "Moreno is exquisitely mind-blowing, but his fear is also evident" and that "Deftones went soft, but in an impressive way, to twist around its signature punk-thrash sound." [2] (

White Pony later went on to earn multi-platinum status as well as a Grammy award for Best Metal Performance.

There was a possibility of a release of Black Stallion, a remix album of White Pony, but instead, a limited edition black and red version of White Pony was released with a bonus 13th track: The Boy's Republic. An acoustic of Boy's Republic was to appear on Black Stallion, and part of it was leaked and spread through file sharing programs.


Their fourth and latest album, Deftones, was released in 2003. Again, the album sold well, and "Minerva" received some radio play.

Much of the material on the album was written by guitarist Carpenter, which accounts for the album's more heavy metal feel. Delgado plays synth, keyboards or sampler rather than his previous turntables.

In reviewing Deftones Stephen Thomas Erlewine writes that "Hexagram," the album's opener, " hits hard — harder than they ever have, revealing how mushy Staind is, or how toothless Linkin Park is, even if it's a bit of a shame that Chino Moreno has resorted to guttural barking for singing."

Erlewine is slightly bothered, however, noting that "Deftones feel compelled to strengthen their metallic roots" by forsaking "the very things that make them better and more interesting than the rest — namely, their love of art rock, whether it's via the Cure or My Bloody Valentine." He closes by writing, "When they do play by the rules, they're good, but they're great when they don't follow a map."

As of 2005

The band has a new album in the works, possibly titled "Saturday Night Wrist" scheduled for release in early 2006. Early track titles include "Buffalo" and "Diamond."

Side Projects

Deftones members have worked on several side projects, including Moreno's Team Sleep and Cunningam's Phallucy. Guitarist Carpenter also works with a group called Kush who feature from Fear Factory and Cypress Hill.




Deftones have a number of Non-Album tracks that appear on a variety of other albums, such as:

  • The Chauffeur: Appears on the Duran Duran Tribute Album, also appears on the Resident Evil: Apocalypse Soundtrack.
  • To Have And To Hold: Appears on the Depeche Mode Tribute Album.
  • Can't Even Breathe: A track on the Escape From L.A. soundtrack.
  • Teething: A track on The Crow: City Of Angels soundtrack.
  • The Boy's Republic: Featured on the White Pony Limited Edition.
  • Crenshaw: On the Change (In The House of Flies) single.
  • No Ordinary Love: A Sade cover on the Change (In The House of Flies) single.
  • Back To School (Mini Maggit): Featured on the re-release of White Pony.
  • Sinatra: A Helmet cover on the Minerva single.
  • Sleep Walk: A Santo & Johnny cover on the Minerva single.
  • Lovers: On the Hexagram single.

Deftones' first album, entitled "(Like) Linus" was a demo tape including early versions of 7 Words, Root, Engine No. 9 and Teething along with 11 other tracks.

Chino's Collaborations

  • Savory: A Jawbox cover recorded in collaboration with Far.
  • Wicked: Chino is featured on a Ice Cube cover performed by Korn, the song appears on Korn's album "Life Is Peachy".
  • First Commandment: Chino collaborates with Soulfly, the song appears on Soulfly's self-titled album.
  • Will To Die: Chino collaborates with Strife, the song appears on Strife's album "In This Defiance".
  • Bender: Chino collaborates with Sevendust, the song appears on Sevendust's album "Home".
  • (Rock) Superstar: Chino collaborates with Cypress Hill, the song appears on Cypress Hill's album "Skull And Bones". The track also features Everlast.
  • Danger Girl: Chino collaborates with Tinfed, the song appears on Tinfed's album 'Designated Rivals".
  • Pain: Chino once again collaborates with Soulfly, the track appears on Soulfly's album "Primitive". The track also features Grady Avenell of Will Haven.
  • Things!: Chino collaborates with Hesher, the track appears on Hesher's debut self-titled album.

External links

es:Deftones it:Deftones nl:Deftones pl:Deftones


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