Chapter V: Delving Deeper
It’s incredibly strange how masterful Saturday Night Wrist
turned out considering how the state of the band affected their self-titled effort. Growing more and more distant from each other every day, their recording style became simply lazy, sporadic and a reflection of how their relationships were beginning to fade away. The more the band’s unity dwindled the darker the record began to sound and Saturday Night Wrist
as a whole exists as a sort of photo album to this period in their lives. Ironically, their increasingly deteriorating relationship spawned an unexpectedly stunning plethora of songs that nearly destroyed the band. Overall, the record proves to be a collection of numerous styles that the band further explored and it signified a move towards a more unique brand of alternative metal with elements of post metal and shoegaze. It’s a culmination of all the types of music that Deftones are capable of creating in terms of heaviness, softness, and atmosphere, but the beauty of this record is how relentlessly hard hitting each song is and how it flows so well despite all of the styles that Saturday Night Wrist
showcases. Make no mistake that it’s one of the band’s most unexpectedly consistent and emotional records to date.
As soon as the record starts out it’s quite clear how the band has delved deeper into the void with Chino expressing obvious distaste toward his counterparts on “Hole in the Earth.” Driven by sorrowful lyrics filled with dread, stunning shoegazing soundscapes and Abe’s most engaging drumming performance yet, “Hole in the Earth” excels in revealing to us how incredibly emotional and hard hitting Saturday Night Wrist
will be. Immediately, the song’s soaring atmosphere and engrossing take on alternative metal blows away the listener and only more of these aspects are to come. While “Hole in the Earth delivers in terms of the devastating emotions, “Cherry Waves” and the song beautiful instrumental strangely named after a cheat code showcases how beautiful the genre of alternative metal can actually be. In “Cherry Waves,” the atmospheric sound of Abe’s snare pounds through the empty space and it paves the wave for Chi’s fantastic bass work as well as Chino’s passionate delivery. However, the aspects of these two songs that really stand out happens to be none other than the band’s guardian angel, Chi, with his bass taking center stage, for one last time. While “Cherry Waves” gives him a chance to strut his stuff, the albums instrumental completely centers on him and it proves to be one of the most beautiful pieces Deftones have ever wrote. Boasting a devastatingly bleak atmosphere, brilliant sound effects and Chi’s fantastic performance, it proves how the band doesn't always need Chino’s otherworldly voice to function and also shows how far the band has come in terms of musicianship.
However, the beauty of the record heavily balances out with all of the aggression in more ways than one. “Rats! Rats! Rats!” boasts Chino’s inhuman, raspy shouting, a perfect balance between screaming and emotional cleans, and engaging instrumentation all around. Stephen and Chi provide the exhilarating terrain throughout and Abe proves to be better than ever at the helm of the drums with delivering a brooding performance in the bridge of the song in addition to a badass guitar groove. Meanwhile, the one two punch of “Rapture” and “Beware” hits the listener like the sack of bricks. While “Rapture” is busy getting the blood pumping with thrilling drum rolls and an amazing shoegaze metal atmosphere, “Beware” provides what could be the most chilling song the band has created. Under a sea of fuzz, Chino’s stirring voice exclaims, “Beware the water” in an awe inspiring fashion with the post metal vibe paving the way. The guitar riffs in this one may not be overly complex and the same can be said for Abe’s drumming, but once the weighty guitar work sets in in the final minutes, the buildup will have been quite worth it. Chino’s message about the dangers of drugs and its effect on relationships proves to be some of his best lyrical work yet and the chilling way he states, “Do you like the way the water tastes” will surely give the listener goose bumps.
Once the listen comes to soothing end with “Riviere,” it’s clear how this album definitely almost drove the band apart for good because the band’s dark vibe mirrors the state the band was in. Despite this aspect of Saturday Night Wrist
, it miraculously showcases how far the band has come since the nu metal pioneer Adrenaline
. It happens to be their darkest and most emotional record yet with new styles the band furthered explored such as shoegaze and post metal. It even gives the listener an unexpected blast of bitingly hilarious humor with “Pink Cellphone” which is something the band rarely has in their music. Thankfully, this record worked out for the band against all odds and the strength of their passionate musicianship carries over into their forth coming record all too well. However, little did the band know that something as devastating as a what would eventually prove to be a fatal car accident would be the very thing to properly make them come to their senses and put everything into perspective.