Once every three years I fall into the abyss that is the hyperbolic praise surrounding Deftones and every three years I am confounded by it. Walking into group of fans is akin to entering a room full of Stepford Wives--with glassed over eyes and unsettling smiles they tell me how amazing Deftones over and over again like a robot with some sort of jammed mechanism. Yet once again I fall prey to the hype, like being coaxed by the gentle and misleading guile of a deranged sociopath.
, for this reviewer, is the sonic equivalent of picking up a shirt to wear only to realized that you wanked in it three days prior. Not only is it a bit of a shock, but it's disappointing and a little revolting. Then the shame comes. After the album was over I was also filled with shame, having yet again believed that Deftones could make anything other than a tepid pile of 'edgy" rock. Well you know what? They can't. The chunky hard-rock that they've been creating for years is all the band can do and for some reason that's been A-OK for the past two-ish decades.
Trying to pinpoint where Gore
went wrong is like trying to describe why a school bus driving off a cliff is sad. The answers are as complex as they are blindingly obvious. The newest Deftones record fails on every level because it is musical complacency. The band arose in the late-90s/early 00s when anything with an edge was greeted with open arms. Underneath the jagged sounds of Gore
lies a really bland, crooning brand of rock that is a bare and lifeless as a skeleton. Sure Chino's voice is alright, and here he's actually mixing things up a lot more which is truly welcome. But his sexy/dirty-romance lyrics come across as evocative as, well, the wanked in shirt mentioned earlier.
will have its fans, as to many, each Deftones record has seemingly fallen from the skies like mana from ***ing heaven. For this listener, however, the band's latest feels as empty as the existence of Eros
. It's a special kind of vapid, where its soullessness borders on offensive because Deftones have been peddling the same *** for years while those who should know better maddeningly feast upon it.