Album Review: Deftones (Saturday Night Wrist)

Compelled to subject their music with thoughts of destruction, fury and despair, the Deftones have created something so dark and diabolically delightful on Saturday Night Wrist that fans are questioning how on Earth this band accomplished such a feat.

On their fifth studio album, they steer from thoughts about the war in Iraq to suicidal deliberations to violently screaming, and somehow they package it all so well.

All the way back in 1988, this Sacramento band made themselves into innovators among other musical talents in the business. Creating their own signature sound, the Deftones have established themselves at a place in rock music that can never be touched.

On Saturday Night Wrist, the band decided to work with producer Bob Ezrin, the man responsible for the success of Pink Floyd, KISS, Alice Cooper and Peter Gabriel.

Since musical experimentation and three-year breaks are normally warning signs for low album sales, the Deftones could have created an album far from greatness. But because of the work of Ezrin, some of the band’s songs come close to the tracks on The Wall by Pink Floyd.

Compared to Deftones, an album that struggled to reach gold, and The White Pony, an album that credits the best of the Deftones, this new sound seeps into new waters. It creates an aesthetically pleasing scream fest.

The first single, “Hole in the Earth,” is a haunting vocal roller coaster. Lead singer Chino Moreno gasps from lyric to lyric, screeching to all the high heavens as he describes his own grave.

“Rapture” brings the Deftones to a place that the devil himself couldn’t even fathom with explosions of heavy, fast-paced guitars and drum bombardments. Moreno screams about the embodiment of love, and the pain and agony that come along with it.

“Pink Cellphone” is a cinematic sound structure of faint, distinct voices. These voices feature Annie Hardy defacing the idea of religion, and how sex is something that people take for granted now.

Saturday Night Wrist is a diamond in the rough, showcasing the best of what the Deftones have to possibly offer to its audience. It is a remarkable album.

With Ezrin’s production and Moreno reaching into deeper and darker personal spaces, the Deftones have hit sheer success. They have the potential to grab new audiences with this new, vivid sound.


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