“Kerrang!” – September 2006 // Chino Interviewed


THANKS TO Aj from SharingLungs Board

Deftones singer Chino Moreno has revealed exclusively to Kerrang that making their forthcoming fifth album “Saturday Night Wrist” nearly ripped the band apart.

Moreno and his bandmates started work on the follow-up to their 2003 epnymous offering over two years ago with former Jane’s Addiction producer Bob Ezrin at the helm, but recording sessions quickly ground to a halt.

“It was the hardest record I’ve ever made in my life,” Moreno admits. “In fact, it may even be the hardest thing I’ve done in my life. Nothing was working out. I wasn’t very excited about it and I don’t think anyone else was.”

The singer blames the band’s record company Maverick, producer Ezrin and a total breakdown of communication for the difficulties.

“It felt like we had no control because the label wanted to approve each song. I’ve never had to do that before. It wasn’t creative,” he explains. “I also think I expected a lot more from Bob than I got. I thought he would be my partner and we’d have tons of ideas together. It just didn’t really happen that way.

“I had to step away from the Deftones to look at things in a different light, which is why Team Sleep [Moreno’s side project] happened,” Moreno adds. “The others didn’t like that. It was pretty much the end of the Deftones. I didn’t really care at that point either. After Team Sleep, I didn’t talk to anyone for four or five months. Then I asked them if they still wanted to do this. They asked me the same question and we both said, ‘Of course we want to do it’. It was obvious this was so special to everyone and it’s much easier to talk now.”

The bank picked up where they left off after enlisting the production skills of former Far guitarist Shaun Lopez earlier in the year, who helped them to turn their recording sessions around.

“That was when this record really started taking shape,” Moreno admits. “It felt like I had an ally at last. He was a partner who could get my vision out of me.”



“When I wrote this I thought the band was over and I was telling the other members that I was finished. One of the lyrics is, ‘ I hate all of my friends ‘. It felt like I was alone. I wasn’t communicating with anybody and this was my only way of telling them how i felt. I don’t think they realised what I was saying until a couple of months ago when I explained it to them.”


“This was written at a very confusing time. In the last few years I’ve gone through so much and I’m asking myself a lot of questions here. When you listen to it, you can tell how confused I was”


“This was a turning point on the record. I had just got back from doing Team Sleep, we stopped working with Bob Ezrin and went back to Sacramento to write. This was the first song we wrote together. The lyrics are a warning against the temptation of women, drugs, alcohol or any other vice. It’s quite dark.”


“This is a story about being in the middle of the ocean with someone saying, ‘If you were to sink underneath the waves, then I’d swim after you. Would you do the same for me?. It’s seeing how far the trust goes.”


“This was one of the last songs that I recorded. I really liked it musically but I couldn’t find the right thing to put over it. I sent [System of a Down singer] Serj Tankian the song and said, ‘If you hear anything, then give me a call’. The next day, he sent it back to me with vocals all over it. It was great! It gave me a completely different perspective but it did sound a lot like System of a Down. I focused on one part of it which gave it a foundation that everyone really liked”.


“This was just a little piece of music we wrote while we were recording in Conneticut last winter. It really captured the sadness of that time. It was a desolate place and this song just sums that up. We very nearly forgot about it until Stephen [Carpenter, guitarist] pulled it out of the hard drive just before we mastered the record.”


“Often I won’t label my demos when I send them to people so that other people won’t know what they are if they get lost. I labelled this one with that weird little key on the keyboard. We wrote this in Malibu when we first started writing this record a few years ago. I actually wrote it with Rick [Verrett] who plays in Team Sleep with me. We were just working out some music on the piano in the middle of the night. I love it because it’s so simple.”


“This was one of Stephen’s songs. There’s a lot of aggression here. He spent whole weeks working on individual sections of this because the timing is really intricate. The song title is from a story I was reading about this old actress called Frances Farmer who went crazy. It was only afterwards that I realised Nirvana had also written a song about her.”


“I wanted to write something that was based around a computer drum beat but then I kept adding things to it slowly. The last thing was [Giant Drag singer] Annie Hardy’s vocals. She was hanging around the studio one day so I asked her to record something. She started saying all this nonsense off the top of her head and it was hilarious!”


“We write this one as a band and that’s what’s great about it. You can hear everybody’s input. It’s actually quite poppy. You can nod your head it it, it’s got a good buzz-saw riff and it reminds me of early Deftones.”


“This is another personal song. I haven’t wanted to listen to the album much since we recorded it because a lot of these things are really close to me. It’s a document of what’s going on in my life and I feel like I’m only just getting over it.”


“I wrote this in Connecticut and Bob said that he just wanted to keep it as me on guitar. I wanted to put drums n it but he said it was perfect as it was, so we agreed they’d come in later. I think that was a good thing, actually. It gives the record a chance to breathe. The song’s a story about a witch that I wrote in a drug-induced haze.”