“Billboard” – February 2006 // Abe Interviewed

Deftones Finally Finish Recording New Album

February 24, 2006, 4:00 PM ET
John Benson, Cleveland

Nearly three years removed from their last studio album, the Deftones have finally finished recording the follow-up. Drummer Abe Cunningham tells Billboard.com this is a good sign of how far the band has come through its struggles and internal acrimony, which nearly resulted in a breakup.

“I don’t want to sit here and complain because these things happen to everyone,” Cunningham says, “but if there was a VH1 ‘Behind the Music’ special on us, it would be the perfect episode with divorces and all kinds of crap. It was just lack of communication. Thankfully, we’ve been reattaching our limbs.”

While sessions started in earnest two years ago for the new project, which, depending on who you ask, could be released in early to late spring (Cunningham) or this summer (Maverick), it wasn’t until earlier this year that the Deftones completed recording their fifth album. In describing the new material, which still needs to be mixed, Cunningham looks back for a point of reference.

“Actually, if you look at our last record, I refer to it as ‘Dark Days’ because that’s basically what it was,” Cunningham says of 2003’s self-titled effort. “It’s kind of an incomplete record from my viewpoint. I think it’s a good record [with] a lot of good songs but the new album, from start to finish, is a very complete record and has all of the extremes that we like. I’d say it’s kind of hard.”

While Cunningham says Internet rumors of the effort being called “Saturday Night Wrist” were premature, he wouldn’t completely rule out the title. Among the many tracks being considered is “Beware of the Water,” which the band may drop into its headlining set on the Taste of Chaos tour. That trek stops tonight (Feb. 24) in Jacksonville, Fla.

Up next for the Deftones is an extended European run in the spring, with an anticipated headlining Stateside jaunt this summer. For now, the band is just enjoying its Taste of Chaos experience as it reclaims its concert legs. “We’ve been off for quite a while and this is our way to just ease back into it,” Cunningham says. “And it’s going really well. It’s all good.”