“Reuters” – July 2003 // Abe and Frank Interviewed


Deftones Stir Up Suspense for Fourth Album
By Margo Whitmire

LOS ANGELES (Billboard) – After gradually building their fan base for several years,
the garage-skater-band-turned- Grammy-decorated Deftones have returned to the upper
regions of The Billboard 200 with their self-titled fourth album.

To build anticipation for the music, the band’s members say they decided to carefully
shield the album from outside ears until its May 20 debut.

“We tried to build an anticipation that you can’t get these days,” drummer Abe Cunningham

With three albums and more than 10 years as a band behind them, their Maverick/Warner Bros.
project came easily to the group’s members.

“It’s definitely not forced when it comes to creativity,” says turntablist Frank Delgado, w
ho spins on the heady, beat-laden jam “Lucky You.”

“But it gets hard because we know what we don’t want to do–but we don’t know what we’re going to do.”

moving steadily uphill

After nine months of studio time with producer Terry Date, the Deftones find their music to
be as “exciting as it ever was,” Cunningham says. “Our path has been steadily uphill.
Ten years later, it’s better than ever.”

The band’s signature backdrop of Stephen Carpenter’s frenzied guitar and Cunningham’s
powerful drums blends melodically with lead singer Chino Moreno’s voice.

He excels on such songs as “Anniversary of an Uninteresting Event” and first single, “Minerva.”

It is a move that seems to be working for radio, because “Minerva” is now No. 10 on the
Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart.

“They’ve written an album that is representative of what their core fans would want,”
Warner Bros. marketing executive Robbie Snow says. “But it allows them to grow their audience as well.”


Aggressively marketed internationally to retail with price and positioning and in-store
visibility, the new album is featured in TV spots on MTV, MTV2, and Fox Sports.

Before embarking on the hotly touted Summer Sanitarium tour with Metallica, Linkin Park,
Limp Bizkit, and Mudvayne, the Deftones are currently playing small clubs across the U.S.

“The club dates allow them to maintain credibility with their core audience, as their
hardcore fans can still see them in an intimate environment,” Snow says.

Starting out as a bunch of high-school kids playing in their hometown of Sacramento, Calif.,
the Deftones consider themselves “first and foremost a live band,” even recording their first
CD, 1995’s Adrenaline, almost completely live.

The fourth time around, the group is able to better appreciate the process.

“Just making the music is our favorite part of what we do,” bassist Chi Cheng says. “Whether
it’s live or in the studio, we’re just excited to make music together.”

Delgado adds, “Being able to have an outlet to be creative and then being able to travel
around the world to do it is the best.”


“Q” – July 2003 // Deftones Interviewed

“Chart Attack” – July 2003 // Chino & Frank Interviewed

Deftones: Attack Of The Gearheads
By: ChartAttack


Call it love, infatuation or just plain dorkiness, but not unlike your fabulous
writer here, the Deftones can be quite the technical geeks when it comes to music.
Discussing the finer points of their latest self-titled album, singer Chino Moreno
and sampling/keyboard dude Frank Delgado got all gear-head-talk with ChartAttack.
They seemed to enjoy it over the typical, “I hear you like emo” shit as seen in
every other article about them including another story I wrote on ’em…

ChartAttack: This effort was quite a while in the making.

Chino Moreno: I normally wouldn’t want to spend a year making a record, but that’s
how it worked out. I think it was worth it.

ChartAttack: “Deftones”…Why go for the self-titled idea a la Rancid, like, four
albums into your career?

Chino Moreno: It wasn’t really an idea we thought of. It was just our only option.
We usually have a title before the record’s done or while we’re working on it and
everyone’s like, “This is it.” The one we did have wasn’t agreed on by everyone so
it was just thrown out. We could only agree on a self-titled album.

Frank Delgado: It was the last option. We had a few titles early on,
but I think it’s pretty fitting.

ChartAttack: Do you think that this album puts anything vastly different into the
Deftones sound?

Chino Moreno: Well, there was nothing really outstanding in the way we set out to
write. It was pretty much the same way as White Pony.

ChartAttack: I’ve heard rumour that you did try something unique this time around though.

Chino Moreno: We didn’t use any tape on this album, which isn’t something we’ve told
too many people. We went all digital. Well, at one point halfway through the project
we dumped it all down to tape and back to digital. We started it all at the rehearsal
space instead of tearing our gear apart and taking it to the studio.

Frank Delgado: We brought Terry [Date, producer] down to our space which is nothing
special but it was more than what we had in the past. It really helped the writing
process to write, record, listen back and check things out.

Chino Moreno: We wanted to try it and we made it work. We used a third of the stuff
from the rehearsal space right on the album.

ChartAttack: You went with digital recording and then switched to tape? That seems weird.

Chino Moreno: We were already on digital, so it was easier to stick with it. We did the
dump down to tape just to get that hiss and warmth… that was it. The only reason we bothered
with it. Digital was just easier when we were working out of the rehearsal space.

Frank Delgado: It was definitely a challenge to get this album coming out the way it did
under the constraints we placed on it.

ChartAttack: Do you think you’ll do something like that again in the future if it was so helpful?
Chino Moreno: Who knows though, maybe for the next album we’ll try to do it all on an 8-track!
We’ll try to be The White Stripes and do it on six track in five days… with one track broken!

“Chicago Sun-Times” – July 2003 // Chino Interviewed



“Hard rock to the core”

July 25, 2003


It’s been 15 years since vocalist Chino Moreno, guitarist Stephen Carpenter
and drummer Abe Cunningham started jamming together as high school students
in Sacramento, Calif., and eight years since the group (which is completed by
bassist Chi Cheng and DJ Frank Delgado) debuted with 1995’s aptly titled “Adrenaline.”

That disc and 1997’s “Around the Fur” marked the Deftones as one of the most
aggressive of the so-called “rap-rock” or “nu-metal” bands, but it was with
2000’s platinum-selling third effort that the band showed the breadth of its
musical vision. “White Pony” incorporated dense layers of psychedelic/noise guitar
(think Pink Floyd meets My Bloody Valentine), added grinding industrial textures a
la Tool, and alternated Moreno’s savage screaming with more melodic, moody and
ethereal interludes.

The group’s self-titled fourth album continues in this experimental vein, and it’s
another strong collection of swirling, layered and subtly nuanced hard rock. Following
a rare club performance at Metro the week the disc was released, the Deftones are
performing at 3 p.m. Saturday at the Hawthorne Race Course in Cicero as part of
Metallica’s Summer Sanitarium Tour.

I spoke with Moreno shortly after the album was completed last spring.

Question. Tell me about making this album.

Answer. It happened over a long time–it was a couple of years making this one–and it has
a different sound than “White Pony.” You’ve got three albums behind you, and you don’t
want to follow any of the same formulas that you used on any of those other records,
so there’s a lot more thinking involved. It wasn’t over-thinking. I’m just glad there
are deadlines, because then the album has to be done! If it wasn’t for the deadline,
the mother—–r would never be done, because we’d just want to keep on working on it!
It’s also cool because this record happened over a time in our lives–the year and a half
that we got to spend actually living our lives. Since we got signed in ’95, we got put out
on tour, and at the most we’d get a couple of months off here, a couple of months off there.
But we pretty much stayed on tour and then went in to make records. This time, we got to
get off the road and go home and kick it. I got to go home and live in my house, drive
in my car, do s— that normal people do. Clean my pool.

Q. But you wound up jumping into a number of side projects during the down time.
You formed Team Sleep and made an as-yet-unreleased album with some unlikely collaborators,
including former Faith No More vocalist Mike Patton, ex-Hole bassist Melissa Auf Der Maur
and former Helium guitarist and vocalist Mary Timony.

A. But that was also a good thing–a totally useful thing. I know for myself, I can only
watch so much f—ing television! You can only rake so many leaves until there are no
more to rake.
We were all kind of involved in our things. Stephen was making music with B-Real
[of Cypress Hill]. It’s just that Stephen lives in L.A., and the rest of us still live
in Sacramento. We made this specific time off so we didn’t even have to think Deftones.
We all did anyway, but it was nice to take a break.

Q. When you write with the Deftones, you add your lyrics after the song has already come
together, right?

A. It’s always been that way. I’ll just hear something and feel a certain thing and start
singing. I let the music create it, whatever mood it may be. But the music is already
pretty much written.

Q. In the past, you were often playing different characters in your songs, adopting roles
like David Bowie or Peter Gabriel might. I’m thinking of a tune like the kidnap fantasy

A. There was a lot more of that on “White Pony” than on this one. This one was more stream
of consciousness. Playing parts was more on the earlier records. That was a time in my life
when I was kind of bored, and I just wanted to be somebody else.

Q. So what are you talking about on “Deftones”?

A. The Earth.

Q. The lyrics seem to be a lot more optimistic. In the single “Minerva,” you sing, “God
bless you all for the song you saved us.” Where is that sentiment coming from?

A. I just think there’s some beautiful s— going on right now, but there’s some really
f—ing shady s— going on, too. But there are some really simple things–like a woman’s
voice or hearing someone sing a song–that can just instill this feeling of ecstasy. It can
be the simplest thing, but everything can build on that.
I don’t want to preach to anybody. My opinions are my opinions. I just want to sing about
romance and good s—. If anybody listens to that song and gets a message, that’s a positive
thing. I don’t want to have to explain what that song should mean; it should mean how it makes
you feel. I’m pretty damn sure it will make people feel happy.

Q. When you talk about mood, I hear an awful lot of Pink Floyd in your music.

A. It is a total mood thing. I can’t believe that more people aren’t influenced by them. It’s
good to have songs where people can do whatever they want. Just because a band has been
pigeonholed into whatever kind of scene–for us it’s nu metal or whatever–I just hear sounds.
I hear so much stuff going on around me, and I try to take it in. Not so much fit stuff in or
cram stuff into another gear, but you can take something that started out over here and take
it somewhere way away from this Earth. And Pink Floyd definitely did that.

Q. Let’s talk about racism. Did you ever experience any prejudice as a Hispanic in a scene that
is dominated by white rockers and metalheads?

A. In the beginning, almost every interview we did, that got brought up to us: “Isn’t it weird
that you guys play metal?” And I was like, “What do you mean it’s weird?” For one, I don’t know
what it’s like to be white, so I don’t have anything to compare it to. I just like what I like.
It’s not like we’re trying to be anything. I like all kinds of music–I listen to the Too Short
tape and a whole a lot more. I take in any music.
As far as like where I grew up, the [other Hispanic kids] called me “the white one,” but they
were cool about it. It’s not like they were messing with me; they were just teasing me.
The sun would go down and I’d see them go off to go do something–to get into trouble–and I’d
just go the other way. I was into something different. Luckily, I had Stephen and a handful of
other guys who were into music, playing it and listening to it, and we all just kind of came
together–all the kids who were into skateboarding and listening to different types of music.

Q. Do you think the Deftones have kept their hardcore metal following despite the experimentation
of the last two discs?

A. Definitely. I thought we’d lose that audience when we did “White Pony.” We still hear from a
lot of people who ask, “What’s your new album like? Is it more like ‘Around the Fur,’ more hard
and heavy?” And I’m like, “It’s hard and heavy, but it’s also nice and sweet sometimes, too.”
But that’s how our records have always been. If people really listen to “Adrenaline,” it had
some of the melodic stuff, too, but there was also a lot of the knucklehead s—, like me
screaming and being pissed-off at everybody and thinking everybody was out to get me and s—.

Q. How do you feel when the band is categorized as “nu metal”?

A. Nobody wants to be pigeonholed, man. To me, it’s just metal.

Q. Well, one of the things that distinguish the genre is that it’s much more influenced by hip-hop.

A. The whole world is, man. There are Eminems all over the place! I see ’em every day on every
corner. To me, that’s really what I grew up in, the urban s—, and when I see everybody else
trying to be like that, I’m like, “How is that fun to be like?” I’m glad I don’t live in the
neighborhood any more, know what I’m saying? I don’t get it how people want to be so down with
the ghetto. It shaped the person I am or whatever, but it’s certainly nothing to glorify.


“Mean Street” – July 2003 // Abe Interviewed

July 2003 -Cover Story – Mean Street Music Magazine
DEFTONES: Nu Metal Mavericks

“That we still haven’t killed each other after fifteen years is pretty big.” – Chi Cheng

By: Mar Yvette


It’s a chilly May evening in Detroit and as the sun begins to set, the motley crowd of
generation Y-ers lined up at the foot of the gum-flecked, tag-scrawled steps of St.
Andrews Hall continues to swell, zigzagging around the block like some ravenous snake
anxious for its meal. A few guys at the front of the line hi-five each other, congratulating
themselves for waiting in line since sunrise while the burly, tattoo-laden security crew
cautiously look on and guard the door. Though no one is allowed in until showtime, the sonic
ferocity of sound check emanates from within the thick brick walls, offering the eager throng
a tantalizing preview of what’s to come. Playing tonight at the small yet legendary venue,
where everyone from Lou Reed to Nirvana has played, are the Deftones, music’s undisputed kings
of nu-metal. Part of the group’s brief “guerilla tour” preceding this year’s Summer Sanitarium
Tour, the performance is, as drummer Abe Cunningham later says, a warm-up of sorts. “We’ve been
off for almost two years and haven’t made a new album in almost three, so the whole point of
the tour was to play for a thousand people or less.”

Indeed, it’s been a while since audiences have seen a live Deftones show or listened to a
full-length album of new material. And as Cunningham sees it, the hiatus was a long time coming.
“This is the first time we actually took a break for ourselves since we’ve been around. And
we’ve been around since ’88! You have your whole life to record your first record, know what
I mean? But ever since we recorded [debut album Adrenaline], it’s been just a constant cycle
of record, tour, record, tour. This is the first time we actually said, ‘man, let’s kick it for
a while, go home and just be normal before we write songs again.’”

Sound check has finally finished (in fact, the designated time for this interview was pushed
back an hour and a half) and stepping onto the group’s massive tour bus is like entering a
tranquil sanctum, a stunning contrast to the fervent swarm gathered just a few feet away.
Guitarist Stephen Carpenter is standing near the bus’s entrance, rapidly typing away on a
laptop and downloading songs like “Car Wash” onto his iPod while several people sit around,
talking and laughing in hushed tones. Past the bunks, lounging at the back of the bus are
Cunningham, singer Chino Moreno, bassist Chi Cheng, and turntablist Frank Delgado, each of
whom is trying to determine the source for Delgado’s own current laptop quandary. Evidently,
“the damn thing won’t work” and Delgado is getting frustrated. “We bring things like our
computers [when touring], so it’s kind of annoying when they’re screwed up like this one is
right now.”

Watching the guys in a setting other than the head-banging roar and bright lights of the stage,
one would never guess that they are one of — if not the –most respected hardcore rock bands
to emerge within the last two decades. Though their sound has most often been billed as nu-metal,
it is a description acquired much more by default than by definition. “They call it all kinds of
things [alt-metal? ethereal-core?], but I just say it’s hard rock,” offers Cunningham, enunciating
“hard” and “rock” as though each word constitutes its own sentence. Among the first groups to
juxtapose masculine bombast (heavy riffs and earsplitting wails) with feminine gentleness (dreamy
tones and melodious vocals), the Deftones have generated countless imitators in their wake and
have influenced other successful bands like System Of A Down.

It was back in 1988, amid the suburban landscape of our state’s capital, when high school students
Carpenter, Cunningham and Moreno first got the notion to jam together. Playing anywhere they could
– the obligatory backyard parties and dive clubs — they slowly began to generate a local buzz and,
after going through several different bass players, they found a permanent bassist in Chi Cheng.
For the next several years, the group continued to develop their sound and harness their strengths,
eventually recording a solid four-song demo. Ultimately, it was this demo that caught the attention
of Madonna’s newly christened label, Maverick and in 1995, the Deftones quietly exploded onto the
scene with Adrenaline.

Though it was far from being an overnight sensation, the Deftones’ debut sold more than half a
million copies based on word of mouth alone. Having built up a firm fanbase with their relentless
touring (both on their own and opening for artists like Ozzy Osbourne and fellow Californians,
Korn) it wasn’t long before expectations mounted for a follow-up album. Enter 1997’s Around the
Fur, the gold-selling album which not only expanded the band’s musical range (thanks to newest
member Delgado and his skills on the turntables), but it also propelled the group to greater
prominence with the MTV and radio hits “My Own Summer (Shove It)” and “Be Quiet and Drive (Far

After yet another endless jag of touring, in the summer of 2000, the group released White Pony,
the platinum-plus selling album that erased any lingering doubts that the Deftones were merely a
poster band for the post-Metallica, neo-hardcore movement. But rather than remaining in the secure
territory of past success, the Deftones — as had been their modus operandi from the beginning –
tinkered more freely with experimental styles and synth-driven instrumentation, allowing Moreno’s
well-known affinity for bands like The Cure and Duran Duran to seep through the sober sludge of
dense rhythms and thick guitars. Interestingly enough, it was the unconventional nature of the
album that garnered the most mainstream recognition, reaping the band’s first Grammy win — something
Cunningham doesn’t take too seriously.

“It’s a pretty cool thing to win a Grammy ‘cause I would always watch that stuff growing up with
my mom,” he says in his animated speech style. “I remember she would always get excited when the
Grammys came on, so it’s a big thing, but I’m over it. I mean, it’s cool, but it’s on some shelf
in my house, all dusty and fingerprinted like a motherfucker,” he laughs.

Now, nearly three years after the success of White Pony comes the group’s fourth full-length effort,
simply titled Deftones. Debuting at #2 on the Billboard charts (it was #1 in Canada), the self-titled
disc has been one of the most awaited hard rock releases of the year. A dark, hard-hitting assault of
artistic perplexity, Deftones evolves well beyond the whisper-to-scream blueprint inked on past albums,
but it isn’t afraid to embrace the band’s fundamental appeal: a hauntingly gauzy yet intensely raw
soundscape of Moreno’s lyrical abstractions and chameleon-like vocals floating above a sea of
tempestuous rhythms, unrelenting guitar gnarls and thudding bass lines.

Like the eerily melodic first single “Minerva,” songs like “Hexagram” and “Bloody Cape” demonstrate a
decidedly tighter yet no-less-abrasive sound. “Lucky You” surfaces as the most obvious nod to gothic
80’ new wave while the closing “Moana” seduces with a haunting sparseness. Although Cheng says he
considers the record merely “another Deftones album that’s not really distinctive from the other
albums,” others might disagree. It is arguably the most lucid reflection of the band to date.

Slouched over his seat with strands of disheveled hair peeping from underneath his baseball cap,
Moreno says, “I think the album really represents us as a band and that’s why it’s called Deftones.
But other than that, a title never really jumped out at us. We felt [the title] represented all of
the songs, our band and the time we spent on it. We literally spent over a year making it, so…just
being together every single day, going into the studio and spending all day just playing together,
making parts, putting them together and making songs…it was all us.”

In the course of less than an hour, it becomes clear that though they are five very distinct
personalities, the Deftones have built a genuine camaraderie with one another. How else to explain
surviving the notoriously heated scuffles and rebounding from the dreaded brink of breakup? It is
an accomplishment that still amazes the soft-spoken Cheng. “That we still haven’t killed each other
after fifteen years is pretty big,” he says pensively. “And I think we’re all really happy. I mean,
there’s been a lot of ups and downs, but I don’t think that we have any regrets. I think we’re the
closest we’ve been in a long time and I’m glad we’ve been able to get through it all together.”

Cunningham agrees that the sometimes-volatile moments have been well worth the struggle. “This is
our business that we created and we know that we can’t always suck it dry. I think we’re just
learning that. We went backwards a lot, but it’s all part of learning. Our whole experience with
this band has always been a very slow but gradual climb over the last fifteen years. If I were to
sit around and bitch about anything, it would be bullshit because this is my dream, personally.
It’s a pretty beautiful thing to be able to do – to travel the world and be our own bosses.
I haven’t had a job, like a real job, in ten years. So to say anything negative would be totally
ungrateful. ”

With no opening band on this particular tour (which will have wrapped up by the time you read this),
the band has just about forty-five minutes before they have to put their shoes back on and get onstage.
Wondering if there’s any musician they’d be willing to stand in line for all day, the guys mention their
current favorites. “Right now I’m into Ryan Adams and Whiskeytown. That’s about it,” Cheng offers.
“I’ve been listening to… uh…man, every time this question comes up I cannot answer it,” replies
Cunningham. What about the new Justin Timberlake? (Going out on a limb.) “Ah, dude, I’ll rock that
shit!” he exclaims. “That album is Michael Jackson like a motherfucker, but it’s pretty damn good.
[Timberlake] actually came to one of our shows and we didn’t even know it. Who knows? Maybe he’ll be
at the show tonight. We would love to kick it with Justin! ”

“Chart Attack” – July 2003 // Chino & Frank Interviewed

ChartAttack – July 21st 2003


– Deftones Not “Morose” –

The Deftones aren’t doing much to dispel public opinion that they’re
the metallic equivalent of an emo band. They’ve been asked about their
love of droopy singers like Morrissey a million times throughout their
15-year career, to the point where it’s a virtual no-no to talk about
emotions. Still, as singer Chino Moreno and keyboard/samplist Frank
Delgado discuss the band’s self-titled fourth album, they can’t help but
mention how feelings were an integral part of its production.

“I didn’t really feel much of anything this time around… or so I thought,
” says Moreno about the album. “The mood I’ve been in for the past year
and a half, I can see it now that I listen back to the songs. I can tell
I was in a dark, drab kind of mood and when I hear these songs, it takes
me right back to those moments. The record sounds really sad and I think
it has a lot to do with writing in Seattle during the winter months. It
felt really lonely and shitty up there. It’s cold, and Frank and I were
the only ones there. When I listen back, I remember being right there.”

Finally getting a chance to showcase these songs live on the Summer Sanitarium
tour with Metallica, Limp Bizkit and Linkin Park, Moreno says that each night
is an adventure. He gets to relive each emotion as the songs unfold.
Thankfully it’s not too upsetting for him.

“I can’t describe how it feels to be singing these songs every night. It’s
not horrible or anything, you just recall that emotion. It’s like how we’ll
all go through a million emotions every day and another time you’ll recall
exactly how that emotion was. It doesn’t make you sad or whatever, you just
know right how you were at that point in time; a thought or feeling. It’s fun
to be able to recreate emotions to make something happen, whatever it is.”

The band doesn’t see those emotional influences carrying over to their fans in
the same way though. While many of the songs on this album were written to open
up those emotive tendencies, the duo believes that everyone will take their own
meaning from it.

“We have our own ideas as to what songs mean, but it’s different for our fans,
though,” says Delgado. “They’ll draw their own conclusions and that’s totally
fine. Those songs mean something particular to us and each person should develop
their own ideas as well. Besides, some of our fans are drawn to the aggression
instead of the emotion. They don’t care what the songs mean, they just want that
heaviness. It’s a huge case of dynamics for everyone: the highs and lows.”

“Everyone goes through those in a day,” adds Moreno. “The highs and lows, you
smile or put your head in your hands a couple of times a day and I really hope
that people find a part of that in what we do, especially if it helps get you
through the day. I don’t want to say that we’re this morose band, though. We try
to level things out. It took a year to make this album, so we lived the record,
went through all of those emotions. They’re important to us.”

Moreno and Delgado stress that music is an emotional catalyst, so it will always
strike some person. If that’s only the aggression, fine. If people feel the need
to brood, that’s great too. Either way, music is just supposed to impact you. As
Moreno says, this album is about “conveying an emotion over saying anything specific.”

“This time around the emotion is pretty dark, so the next record we’ll do during
Spring Break at Daytona Beach. It’ll be the happiest record you’ll ever hear.”

“Hit Parade” – July 2003 // Chino Interviewed

Hit Parade, July 2003. Pages 52-53
typed by Liz (LlZARDofOZ@aol.com)

Big things have been predicted for the Deftones ever since this Sacramento,
California-based New Metal attraction first hit the music scene back in the mid-’90s.
During that time, vocalist Chino Moreno, guitarist Stephen Carpenter, drummer
Abe Cunningham, d.j. Frank Delgado and bassist Chi Cheng have constructed a musical
resume filled with pulsating rhythms, bombastic beats and from-the-gut vocal forays.
As proven on their Y2K release, White Pony, there are millions of fans around the globe
who are ready, willing and able to answer this unit’s off-center clarion call. But it is
with the immediant success of their latest self-titled offering that the Deftones seem
finally to have hit their full rock and roll stride. Recently we spoke to Moreno about what
has already been hailed as this unit’s most powerful, complex and mature effort to date.

Hit Parader: Tell us some inside secrets about your new album.
Chino Moreno: There are no secrets. It’s all in the music. I guess if you want to look at
it another way, if you listen to this album, most of the secrets are revealed. This is a
very intense, heavy album, and we’re very proud of it. But I really don’t feel the need to
explain this record- it’s all there right in front of everyone who hears it. We worked very
hard on writing the songs and we feel that all the effort we put into it made it a really
strong album from start to finish. We had written about half the songs early last year, then
we took a short break and finished writing last summer. By the fall we were in the studio,
and it was finished by the beginning of this year. It was kind of a drawn-out process, but
we enjoyed all of it.

HP: At one time the rumor was that this album was going to be called Lovers.
What happened with that idea?
CM: At one time that was a thought. It sounded kind of different and kind of cool, but as
we got closer to actually coming up with the cover artwork and stuff like that, we all just
decided to call it Deftones. This is an album that we’re very proud to have our name attached
to. We did enjoy having the information that we were thinking of calling it Lovers come out
and spread all over the place. Just when everyone started to report it as a fact, that’s
when we decided to change it.

HP: How does the music on the album show the band’s artistic evolution?
CM: Because of all the time we’ve spent together, and all the touring we’ve done over the
years, I think that we’ve developed a stronger band identity than ever before. We know what
we do best, and what we want to do. We’re not afraid to experiment, yet we’re also not shy
about just letting the power and energy carry the music along. All of that worked to make this
album come together. I don’t want to compare it to what we’ve done in the past because I don’t
like doing that, and each album shows where we were at a given time. But this one is very special.

HP: How much of the new material do you expect to have in your next stage show?
CM: It depends. I guess there will be more as fans get more and more used to the material.
We don’t want to just shove it all down their throats right away. We want them to like it
and want to hear it.

HP: During your time between albums, it seemed that you really explored your fascination with
electronic music.
CM: What you’re referring to is what I’ve been calling my Team Sleep project. It’s something
totally different and apart from the Deftones. I started doing that kind of music just for fun-
as something to do in my free time. But from there, it kind of took on a life of its own.
I did the intitial recordings in my bedroom- just me fooling around with some electronic,
beat-oriented samples. But once I got those tapes done, I brought in some neighborhood friends
to kind of round the sound out. We did some more work with it last summer, it was a lot of fun.

HP: Did that project get you ready to make a new Deftones album?
CM: In a way it did. When you’re playing music that’s so different from what people expect,
and when you’re playing live and the crowd is responding in a very different way, it allows
you to approach everything else from a very fresh perspective. With the Deftones you have mosh
pits and people stage diving. With Team Sleep you had none of that- just a lot of people standing
there getting into the beat and occasionally tapping their foot. So when I got back to work on
new music for the Deftones, I was really ready for it.

HP: As your watch the changes taking place within the so-called New Metal scene,
how do you respond to them?
CM: Like with any other time in music, I guess it’s true that there’s good music out there,
and there’s some not-so-good music. But I’m a big fan of just about every kind of music, so
if bands are taking chances and really laying it on the line, then I applaud what they’re
doing and I encourage them. But, if they’re just trying to fall in line and deliever what they
think the people want to hear, they’d better be careful. Thats not good for them, or for music.
But I don’t think Deftones are really part of the New Metal thing. I know some people have placed
us there, but we came along before that. Some of our influences are different, and we have no
interest in being part of anyone’s scene.

HP: Do the high expectations that many within the music industry have for your new album place
extra pressure upon you?
CM: Maybe it puts the pressure on them for placing their belief in us! I don’t think we felt
any more pressure than usual when we made this album. We always push ourselves, and because of
that there is a natural degree of pressure. But we took our time and did it right, so it wasn’t
like there was any sort of unexpected pressure. We dealt with it very well, and let it inspire us.