Review Summary: Deftones stray from their roots and upon doing so create a masterpiece.
Deftones started off as just another nu metal band. With releases like "Adrenaline" and "Around The Fur" under their belts, they already had a strong following in the community. Then in 2000, white pony was released and music would never be the same again.
It kicks off with the hectic "Feiticeira" a dramatic and nightmarish song which really sets the mood for the rest of the album. The bass is thick and heavy, complimenting the screeching guitars. But the band's heavy side is mostly left off this album in favor of more complex and layered tracks. The only other song that is reminiscent of their earlier days is "Street Carp" which serves as a break between act one and act two of the album. It's short and frantic with a repeating guitar which makes for an excellent ending to the song, with Chino's vocals fading out and eventually, the guitar.
But it's the more complex songs that really shine on this album, one of my personal favorites being "Passenger" featuring the fantastic Maynard James Keenan of Tool. Chino and Maynard have drastically different vocal styles but it all comes together on the song, making for one of the most enjoyable experiences on the album. "Elite" is another highlight, with Chino screaming "When you're ripe, you'll bleed out of control". The lyrics really strike a chord, and the drums and guitar add an industrial feel to the song. This is emphasized further when Chino's robotic vocals come into play about half way through.
But out of every track on the album, the standout, and to this day the band's most well known track is "Change (In The House Of Flies)". The song starts with a guitar riff and creepy background noises thanks to Frank Delgado. And then the vocals come in with Chino softly singing "I watched you changed, into a fly" and then before you can say 'Masterpiece', the rest of the band kicks in for a fantastic and beautiful chorus. The song fades out and just when you thought it was over "Pink Maggit" begins. It starts out bleak and interesting, and then it explodes for one final assault from the band.
So overall, this album will be remembered as Deftones' magnum opus, and one of the greatest albums of all time. At first listen it may seem overwhelming, but upon further listens, it all comes together. The lyrics are at times cryptic and the bass is mesmerizing, thanks to the late and great Chi Cheng. This is an essential album and the best starting point for the uninitiated.