Deftones never really seemed like the sort of band to stray from their trademark sonic attack, did they?
And thats 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, its an early Christmas present. The album continues the bite of Diamond Eyes, but also references the bands 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; theres plenty of prog-metal appeal in guitarist Stephen Carpenters technical approach to high-octane riffery, and Chino Morenos 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 – lets face it – this album probably wont change your mind. Deftones arent particularly pushing boundaries here, but its 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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