Koi No Yokan



by DirEnRefused USER (18 Reviews)
August 4th, 2013 | 38 replies

Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Painful in my indifference.

When "Leathers" was released, it awoke a suspense and anticipation within many for Deftones they'd perhaps assumed was gone. One couldn't help but be carried with the passion of the performance, Chino's outcry of “Shedding your skins” soaring over the enormously weighty, bigger than itself instrumentation. So engaging by virtue of it simply being different. The band's long and illustrious career could and has been waxed lyrical to the nth degree, so for them to still be capable of bringing out something novel, something which couldn't be traced to their past, but still retained their unmistakable boded well, and I was unwittingly, like many others, swept up in the media furore.

Unfortunately, a single song is not the portent of the full release we sometimes expect it to be. The issue with popularity is its pervasiveness, it will taint and affect everything it touches. Music can't be the “pure”, isolated endeavor it once was when you're aware millions await it with bated breath. Some have the rare apathy to continue as they once did, but more often the pressure is all too evident in the record. Some benefit from the renewed meticulousness, excessive care and devotion placed into a record the musicians now recognize as bigger than themselves, or it can suffer and collapse under the weight of its own expectation, and that's precisely the source of Koi No Yokan's stagnation. Taking risk invites the possibility of error, of disappointment, so it's avoided, and this is what we're left with.

Tracks upon tracks of dreary homogeneity, tracks which leave no impression, with no identifiable moments to bring you back, the band playing to their well established strengths in a way that would be innocuous were it not so disingenuous. Atmospheres are created only to peter out, vacuous experiences which leave the listener hollow and wanting. Chino was never the most flexible vocalist, but he's capable of more than the droning croon which stretches the entire record. We've heard the vicious, spitting bite of "Headup", the crushing ferocity that is the close of "Royal", so to hear five minutes of "Romantic Dreams" meandering without the climax it deserves verges on hurtful. The riffs in "Gauze" sound all too familiar to the ones you've just heard in "Poltergeist", the rhythm section might as well be absent in its relegated support role. The band play the song that they know works, and they do it over and over. "Swerve City's" swinging opening, the laboured but purposeful structure of "Tempest", these are fleeting promises of a squandered potential. I knew they were capable of these moments, and I unfortunately know that there could have been many more of them.

I don't think Deftones are out of ideas, and I'm not even sure they're tired, and that makes the disappointment all the more palpable. I think they're afraid of offending, and judging by the enormous critical reception and popularity this has received, maybe they're right to be. A formula that works doesn't necessarily need to be changed, and meeting the demands of what's expected is apparently the band's new benchmark for success, but it isn't enough for me. If this is maturity, this is a progression, then you'll forgive me for wanting a Deftones who remember what they once were.

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user ratings (2916)
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • greg84 EMERITUS (4.4)
    A remarkably consistent effort from the band that triumphs without altering its style....

    Mongi123 CONTRIBUTOR (4)

    Xenophanes STAFF (2.5)
    Incredibly tepid and uncharacteristically dull, "Koi No Yokan" sees Deftones forget what h...

    ProjectFreak (3)
    Beauty that assaults your ears for an hour, begging you to tell her she's pretty the whole...

  • NagasakiBomber (4)
    Many bands wish they were able to release an album as consistently jaw dropping as this on...

    Deadwing42 (4.5)
    Colors explode across the spectrum of a new Deftones sound that explores beauty, brutality...

    Bwgrotha1s (4.5)
    Just another great CD you can have in your collection from the Deftones...

    Flashmobba (4)
    With Koi No Yokan, Deftones master the art of blending textures heavy and light, forebodin...

  • pbass0 (4.5)
    Continuing to blend beauty and primal aggression like no band before or after, Deftones re...

    BassDemon333 (4.5)
    Bursting at the seams with energy, aggression, and emotion, Koi No Yokan sits comfortably ...

    AdamE (5)
    Deftones shed their superficial skin as an Alt-Metal band and finally show their textures ...

    fiendish (4.5)
    Yeah, it’s a Deftones release, but it ain’t just another Deftones release. They’ve o...

  • someguest (5)

    MezoIsMusic (4.5)
    “Koi No Yokan” is a truly beautiful Japanese concept that is untranslatable. It is the...

    GiantMan (3.5)
    Deftones remain at the top of their game, but still with room to grow....

    Chinomaster182 (4)
    Deftones in their new record have managed to navigate the close gap between staying true t...

  • Timmah99 (3.5)
    Maybe they're getting tired....

    stalinrules (2)
    Introducing: 2012's most overrated album....

    wwba (2)
    Extremely mediocre (I can't see why so many people overrate it) but it has a few decent mo...

Comments:Add a Comment 
August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 2.0

definitely the review of a spurned fanboy, but i thought my personal expectation was necessary in justifying the negatives. thanks for reading.

Contributing Reviewer
August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 4.5

Well written but way too harsh imo

August 4th 2013


"the band playing to their well established strengths in a way that would be innocuous were it not so disingenuous."

Great line, pos'd dude.
Obviously I somewhat disagree with this review, but this was the first Deftones record that really clicked with me, so I guess it was all still sort of new at the time. Since then I have grown to love the band more, but I feel if I had been into them earlier I certainly could have similar opinions to you on this.

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 4.5

I actually agree with most of what you say in this review, I just think those complaints for me are exclusive to a few songs (namely the three you mention here) and the rest of the album is fantastic.

Leathers, Tempest, Rosemary, What Happened to You?, Swerve City, Entombed... all classic deftones tracks.

i do wish Chino's vocal performance across the album was more like the one on Leathers, which is still clearly the best song here.

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 4.5

pretty harsh, i think this album's great, but decent review anyway

August 4th 2013


While my feelings are not as harsh as yours this album never really grabbed my interest. The same goes for Diamond Eyes, I mean it's GOOD and all but I'll take Around the Fur and White Pony over these new albums any day.

Digging: Converge - The Dusk in Us

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off


August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 2.0

thanks for the support, guys.

a much needed review for a very underrated band

haha, i know man, but i've resolved basically to review what takes my fancy from now on. i did try

to be self acknowledging in making the popularity and acclaim of the band pivotal points in the


and yeah, i can understand thinking the negativity is excessive. this is definitely a bitter

perspective shaped by my own expectations and propelled by my past with the band. i guess i found my

impression of mediocrity all the more offensive because of that.

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 4.0

I disagree with your view obvs but this was a terrific review, definite pos from me dude

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 4.5

Totally disagree but totally respect this review. Pos'd.

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 4.0

Well written. Pos. There are a few songs on here that do sound a bit generic for the band. Like the opening riff of Swerve City. Good song, but come on, that riff is pretty simplistic. I still really like this album. Nice review though.

August 4th 2013


The deftones are cool cause their album title is in weaboo

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 3.5

You use uncommon words in their correct context, but then fail on several occasions to make complete sentences, or follow the rules of grammar to create a stunning juxtaposition of wisdom and immaturity.

wtf bro?

Digging: Slade - Keep Your Hands Off My Power Supply

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 2.0

great review, you're damn right...

August 4th 2013


Song titles should be in quotation marks, not italicized

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 3.5

Great review and I kinda see where you're coming from. I actually think this is the best since SNW.

Digging: Ne Obliviscaris - Urn

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 3.5

Beef knows

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 2.0

Song titles should be in quotation marks, not italicized

thanks, edited. i never knew there was an established protocol.

Great review and I kinda see where you're coming from. I actually think this is the best since


i think diamond eyes actually started them down the path of being overly self aware, though i

certainly prefer it to this; there's a definite comfort zone to that album, and it's occasionally hard

to differentiate. diamond eyes is far more forgivable though, because it has lots of really dynamic

compensation like royal, you've seen the butcher, risk and that intense drive like jehu cover.

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 3.5

Poltergiest and Leathers are the best here.

August 4th 2013


Album Rating: 3.5

I feel the only weak tracks are swerve city, romantic dreams, and entombed.

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