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Album Review: Deftones - Koi No Yokan

  • By SteveGamble
  • 23 Nov 2012
  • Release Date 23 Nov 2012
An artfully expressive colossus ranging from atmospheric shoegaze to progressive rock riffage.


Deftones never really seemed like the sort of band to stray from their trademark sonic attack, did they? 

And that’s why no-one should be surprised that Koi No Yokan only further cements Deftones’ place within metal- as the kings of dynamic variation, extended-range wall guitars and a soaring expulsion of vocals. The record is passionate, technical, and ranges between punchy and solemn within almost every track. There is genuine, informed consideration put into how this music makes you feel.

Well, how does it make you feel then? For Deftones die-hards, it’s an early Christmas present. The album continues the bite of Diamond Eyes, but also references the band’s past; the vigorous drive and filtered vociferant vocals of White Pony are present in tracks like ‘Romantic Dreams’ or ‘Graphic Nature’, both featuring the diverse dynamics which are distinctly characteristic to Deftones’ sound.

Nonetheless, I feel that this release invites new listeners in too; there’s plenty of prog-metal appeal in guitarist Stephen Carpenter’s technical approach to high-octane riffery, and Chino Moreno’s vocal narrative paints new pictures throughout; from the dreamy delay soundscapes to gut-punching grit in ‘Rosemary’ to the Meshuggah-esque pulverising of ‘Poltergeist’. 

If dense, experimental metal has never been your cup of tea - let’s face it - this album probably won’t change your mind. Deftones aren’t particularly pushing boundaries here, but it’s an artfully expressive colossus ranging from atmospheric shoegaze to progressive rock riffage.

The title, Koi No Yokan, refers to the premonitory sensation, when meeting a new person, of one day falling in love. Indeed the album does have its sensitive moments, with the more downtempo and ambient ‘Entombed’ standing in contrast to much of the ear-stomping content on this release - but the inviting energy is still very strongly there, and never retreats throughout. 9/10

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