Saturday, 5 May 2018

Deftones "Koi No Yokan" (2012)

Emerging as a forerunner in the formation of the short lived Nu Metal wave, Sacramento based Deftones swiftly made artistic strides to separate themselves from the scene and grow as artists. With the years passing by as they do, the band have ended up with a stellar catalog of records worthy of much discussion and praise. I always found It difficult to pick favorite songs and records with the Deftones specifically because their music is so inviting and persuasive. After six years with this record and another recent binge on it, I am once again in awe of Koi No Yokan for its sonic and textural beauty, a moment where the bands music transcends itself with a timeless presentation of deeply engrossing music with gorgeous aesthetics.

On its surface one might link the bands former two record together. The bombastic intensity of Stephen Carpenter's eight string guitars from Diamond Eyes and the blissful, color soaked experience of the melodic Saturday Night Wrist seem to embrace one another as the record cruises through dynamic movements. Transitioning between tidal grooves on its crunching guitars and beautiful landscapes of serine moods has a record gleaming in its own reflection as all elements seem to fall together for this moment. Like icing on the cake, vocalist Chino truely finds his moment here with a performance that lasts, illuminating every song, elevating the music with his infectious passion and swooning delivery that will have you singing along with every chorus.

In its less obvious persuasion the Deftones fire up their typical formula of hard hitting riffs and melodic counterparts that stands apart from their previous work. With a tighter inclusion of subtle textural electronics fleshing out the canvas and the aesthetic influences of Post Rock and Post Metal drawing in on the guitar tones, a sonic experience unravels as the line up of riffs drift into noisy, textural places with depth and grit about them. It gives the record another dimension, one that endures repetition with these dense and matured tones feeding back into the music its sounding out.

Beyond engrossing aesthetics, grizzly grooving riffs and Chino's sublime singing, the albums mood and tone is oddly palatable to its environment. Warm or cold, day or night, sun soaked or drenched in miserable rain, the power of these songs find a way to relate, however that may be my enjoyment of the record speaking loudly as one can not deny the acoustic guitars which often bring a dark, cloudy dreariness with them. Its powerful and perhaps that explains why a string of indulgent, melancholy moments can seem fit for any occasion, Chino's voice often leading as the respite from the dark allure as he brings us in.

Upon its release, Koi No Yokan was just another collection of solid Deftones songs but over the years each return to the record has pulled me in further. It plays front to back without a weak spot and so often do I loose myself as soft and subtle instrumentation strings you in to an eruption of mammoth guitar tones grinding out sonic grooves, morphing into expansive atmospheres of energy and beauty. With time the musics graphical pallet continues to outlast itself as its textural depth is endearing to the inspiration the songs hold. Its gotten to the point where I binge in ecstasy over how glorious this band are in this moment. I believe it is their crowning moment as a group, of course it would be wonderful to hear them reach these heights again and I wouldn't be surprised if they did.

 Rating: 10/10