“Loudside” – June, 1996 // Chi Interviewed

Chi at the Warped Tour in Denver, interviewed by Eric Nielsen (loudside.com)
© June, 1996


Q: When are you guys going to go into the studio to record the next album?
A: Hopefully in January. We’ll tour up until December and take some time off.

Q: Will any of your old demo songs that didn’t make it to Adrenaline make it to your next one?
A: No, those songs are sooo old. Those songs are like 6 or 7 years old.
Q: Do you plan to re-release them?
A: No, we let all our old songs die.

Q: What’s your favorite color?
A: Green. Why what’s your favorite color?

Q: What’s with Chino’s hair?
A: Oh, how he shaved it? He wanted to look more like… A MONKEY
Q: Really?
A: Yeah, I think he’s achieved that ChimChim look. I think it looks really good.

Q: Do you plan to head to Europe sometime soon?
A: Hopefully. As soon as we can head over seas we want to.
Q: Do you have anything in the works?
A: No, we don’t even know yet. Right now, we’re just doing the Warped Tour and then
Pantera/White Zombie in August. After that, it’s all up in the air. We’d like to tour with
Sepultura, because we’re really good friends with them. Ideally, that’s what we’d like to do.

Q: What’s your musical influences?
A: Me personally?
Q: Yeah.
A: Reggae music, old blues, jazz, that’s about it. I really don’t listen to anything heavy.
Q: What about Weezer?
A: We all like Weezer. We know the whole album. We’re fans. We’re WEEZER GROUPIES. We wanna
meet Weezer.
Q: Is Weezer your favorite band?
A: No, I’m really into an artist called Taj Mahal.
Q: Big Blues guy…
A: He’s the bong. He’s definitely my favorite artist. Otherwise, strictly reggae music.

Q: There’s a lot of people wondering how the Deftones got put on a supposedly PUNK ROCK tour
thinking that you guys are more of a “metal band.”
A: I think it’s cool. There’s a lot of variety on the tour, which is cool. CIV’s got alot of
really cut-the-rug grooves. We’re pretty heavy. I think, it’s really cool. We did five dates
last year. I think it’s good. It makes us stand out sometimes. But, I think all the bands are
Q: Are you having a good time on the tour?
A: Yeah, we’re having a great time. We like all the bands on it. Everyone’s really cool.

Q: How long have you guys been together?
A: 7 years.
Q: Did you guys know each other before?
A: Well, Chino knew Stephan and Abe from skating and he hooked Stephan and Abe up playing
together. And, they needed a singer and he singed Danzig or some shit like that, so they
asked him to sing with them. And, I joined a year later.
Q: Didn’t you hook up through the paper or something?
A: Yeah, my brother had put an ad up for a band and Stephan tried to call him and ended up
hooking up with me.

Q: So, what’s the origin of this whole Screaming Cat logo? Is there some sort of signifigance
to it or is it some sort of marketing ploy?
A: It’s a random cat. We saw the picture and we were really into it, so we started using it .
Looks like the cat is peeking at a yawn.
It’s rad.

Q: Did you start using that before or after you got on with Maverick?
A: Someone at Maverick came in with the logo. Someone had a picture of a cat and we were totally
into it.

Q: What was your favorite band to tour with?
A: Bad Brains… we did the Bad Brains last year. That was the best tour we had done for me.
Just because that is one band we are all really big fans of. We were really honored to tour
with them. The band’s been around for so long. It was incredible to tour with them.

Q: What did you think about the buck show you did for KBPI in Denver a couple months ago?
A: I thought it was great. I’d like to do more under 2 dollar shows. When we open up for bigger
bands we can’t control ticket prices or shirt prices or anything like that. Whenever we have a
chance to keep costs low, we try to do it.

Q: So, what are the dynamics of sound writing for the band? How do you go about writing songs?
A: We beat the shit out of each other. We fight the whole time. We fight alot.
Q: Does one person kind of come up with a riff?
A: Pretty much we all write. Someone will come up with an idea and then everyone will write and
expand on it. There’s really no one song writer in the band. Chino does the lyrics. We come up
with the music, he’ll come up with the melody, and then do lyrics for it.
Q: Do you write songs on the road?
A: Well, we haven’t really come together since we’ve been touring, 12 or 14 months now. We all
have our own songs that we’ve written. We haven’t come together to write as a whole yet, so we
need to start doing that. I have a drum machine and a bunch of guitars and basses at home so
I’m trying to record a bunch of stuff. I know Stephan has a bunch of stuff, and Chino and Abe.
We’ve a ll got stuff. We just need to come together and put it together, because they’re not
really songs until all of us contribute our own styles to it.

Q: I heard you played Slayer the other day and you played Weezer today, any other covers you
guys are known for, or is it just spur of the moment?
A: Yeah, spur of the moment. We did at some college a Steve Miller song, 4 times in a row to
irritate the crowd. I forget which one it was, but they were knocked into submission after that. It was pretty cool.

Q: You mentioned some of the other guys are into skateboarding. Do you see yourself fitting
that whole niche of being in snowboard/skateboard videos? Are the guys really into the
snowboard/skateboard scene at all?
A: Yeah, we’re trying to get some snowboard endorsements right now, so we can start
snowboarding in the winter, but Chino and Stephan have been skateboarding for quite a long
time. So, they’re still really into it. Chino’s the best skater among us. Touring is alot of
downtime, so it’s good to have other endevours that you can actually pursue while you’re

(side note: the next time the Deftones came through with Orange 9mm and Downset, there was a
kegger held for the band after the show and a skate area was set up. Who was out there first?
Chino, of course.)

Q: You have a track on the forthcoming Escape from LA soundtrack, right?
A: Yeah, it’s called CAN’T EVEN BREATHE. We wrote it in like 45 minutes, recorded it, just
FINISHED it. It’s slower than our other stuff. It’s real mellow. It’s our power ballot. It’s
our FREE BIRD song.
Q: What’s on the Crow2?
A: Teething’s on the Crow2, Can’t Even Breathe is our power ballot for the radio. The Crow2 was
cool, we got to be in the movie.
Q: What did you do in the movie?
A: We just played. We just rocked out.
Q: Like in some seedy bar?
A: No, it was in the final scene at the day of the dead festival.
Q: Were you wearing that hat?
A: No, I only wear this hat when I assume my Rayden personality.