Outsiders by virtue of their sound, as much as personal choice, Sacramento’s Deftones have set themselves apart from most any other band and simplistic musical categories, succeeding for two decades-plus on their own terms, despite enduring their fair share of disappointments, and even tragedy, along the way. The band got its start in 1988, with casual jams between high school friends, Chino Moreno (voice/rhythm guitar), Stephen Carpenter (lead guitar), Chi Cheng (bass), and Abe Cunningham (drums) that soon grew in ambition to playing gigs around California. In 1995, the band was signed by Madonna’s vanity imprint, Maverick Records, and promptly released their debut album, Adrenaline; but momentum only really started building for them with 1997’s Gold-certified Around the Fur. Yet it was 2000’s beautifully realized White Pony that brought the group (now augmented by Frank Delgado, handling samples and electronics) their greatest success, simultaneously benefitting from association with the then-wildly popular nu-metal scene, while standing head and shoulders above most of the genre’s other proponents. By comparison, 2003’s self-titled release was a stark disappointment, and though the band rediscovered their songwriting mojo on 2006’s Saturday Night Wrist, cold, harsh reality came crumbling down in Deftones on November 4, 2008, and bassist Cheng was involved in a serious car crash that left him in a coma, with little hope of recovery. Finally, in 2010, the band decided it was time to move forward and recruited bassist Sergio Vega for their new album, Diamond Eyes, followed two years later by Koi No Yokan, which arrived mere months before their stricken comrade, Chi Cheng sadly expired from heart failure.

  • Selected Discography:Around the Fur (1997), White Pony (2000), Saturday Night Wrist (2006), Diamond Eyes (2010)
  • Related Artists: Crosses, Team Sleep, Phallucy, Palms, Sol Invicto, Quicksand
  • Further Reading: 10 Best Deftones Songs

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