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Deftones|Ohms

Ohms

Deftones

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Unless System Of A Down reunites and proves us otherwise, there's no nu-metal band that's aged better than Deftones. Sure, the Sacramento group has always veered closer to alt-metal auteurs like Tool and A Perfect Circle than Korn or Limp Bizkit, and if that maturity came at the cost of some cheap commercial hits back in the day, then it's paid off tenfold in the long haul. On their ninth record Ohms, their first in four years, Deftones are a bunch of guys pushing 50 who sound fresher and more energized than most metal bands half their age. The band spent the 2010s toying with increasingly experimental and cerebral concepts—the sort of thing artsy bands do when they're 15 years into the game—but Ohms is a brilliant and undeniable return to form.

The album marks a reunion with their original producer Terry Date (who worked the boards for their first four records), but it also brings some new blood into the fold: guitarist Stephen Carpenter's nine-string guitar. The beastly axe allows for subterranean low-ends that sound spectacular in contrast to Chino Moreno's soaring vocals. On songs like "Error" and "Radiant City," the palm-muted chugs recall gurgling djent tones, adding a rejuvenating heft to Deftones' signature blend of dreamy and dastardly. Beyond the exquisite production and all-around knockout performances, Ohms is just a great collection of songs. "Ceremony" features a smashing chorus, just a total wallop of a song, while tracks like the surging, spastic "This Link Is Dead" and the metalcore-ish "Urantia" center their unmatched might. The record's title-track closer features a bluesy riff that splatters into gangly shredding, ending the album on a mountainous peak that brings to mind early Mastodon. Considering how long Deftones have been at it, Ohms is technically a late-career record. But in this instance, at least, age is just a number. This band sounds like they're just hitting their stride. © Eli Enis/Qobuz

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Ohms

Deftones

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1
Genesis
00:05:17

Sergio Vega, Vocals, Writer, Bass - Howie Weinberg, Masterer - Frank Delgado, Keyboards, Writer, Samples - Deftones, Producer, MainArtist - Abe Cunningham, Drums, Writer - Chino Moreno, Lyricist, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Carpenter, Guitar, Writer - TERRY DATE, Producer, Mixer, Engineer, Recorded by - Matt Tuggle, AssistantEngineer - Will Borza, Masterer - Andy D. Park, Engineer, Recorded by

© 2020 Reprise Records ℗ 2020 Reprise Records

2
Ceremony
00:03:27

Sergio Vega, Vocals, Writer, Bass - Howie Weinberg, Masterer - Frank Delgado, Keyboards, Writer, Samples - Deftones, Producer, MainArtist - Abe Cunningham, Drums, Writer - Chino Moreno, Lyricist, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Carpenter, Guitar, Writer - TERRY DATE, Producer, Mixer, Engineer, Recorded by - Matt Tuggle, AssistantEngineer - Will Borza, Masterer - Andy D. Park, Engineer, Recorded by

© 2020 Reprise Records ℗ 2020 Reprise Records

3
Urantia
00:04:30

Sergio Vega, Vocals, Writer, Bass - Howie Weinberg, Masterer - Frank Delgado, Keyboards, Writer, Samples - Deftones, Producer, MainArtist - Abe Cunningham, Drums, Writer - Chino Moreno, Lyricist, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Carpenter, Guitar, Writer - TERRY DATE, Producer, Mixer, Engineer, Recorded by - Matt Tuggle, AssistantEngineer - Will Borza, Masterer - Andy D. Park, Engineer, Recorded by

© 2020 Reprise Records ℗ 2020 Reprise Records

4
Error
00:04:50

Sergio Vega, Vocals, Writer, Bass - Howie Weinberg, Masterer - Frank Delgado, Keyboards, Writer, Samples - Deftones, Producer, MainArtist - Abe Cunningham, Drums, Writer - Chino Moreno, Lyricist, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Carpenter, Guitar, Writer - TERRY DATE, Producer, Mixer, Engineer, Recorded by - Matt Tuggle, AssistantEngineer - Will Borza, Masterer - Andy D. Park, Engineer, Recorded by

© 2020 Reprise Records ℗ 2020 Reprise Records

5
The Spell of Mathematics
00:05:27

Sergio Vega, Vocals, Writer, Bass - Howie Weinberg, Masterer - Frank Delgado, Keyboards, Writer, Samples - Deftones, Producer, MainArtist - Abe Cunningham, Drums, Writer - Chino Moreno, Lyricist, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Carpenter, Guitar, Writer - TERRY DATE, Producer, Mixer, Engineer, Recorded by - Matt Tuggle, AssistantEngineer - Will Borza, Masterer - Andy D. Park, Engineer, Recorded by

© 2020 Reprise Records ℗ 2020 Reprise Records

6
Pompeji
00:05:25

Sergio Vega, Vocals, Writer, Bass - Howie Weinberg, Masterer - Frank Delgado, Keyboards, Writer, Samples - Deftones, Producer, MainArtist - Abe Cunningham, Drums, Writer - Chino Moreno, Lyricist, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Carpenter, Guitar, Writer - TERRY DATE, Producer, Mixer, Engineer, Recorded by - Matt Tuggle, AssistantEngineer - Will Borza, Masterer - Andy D. Park, Engineer, Recorded by

© 2020 Reprise Records ℗ 2020 Reprise Records

7
This Link Is Dead Explicit
00:04:37

Sergio Vega, Vocals, Writer, Bass - Howie Weinberg, Masterer - Frank Delgado, Keyboards, Writer, Samples - Deftones, Producer, MainArtist - Abe Cunningham, Drums, Writer - Chino Moreno, Lyricist, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Carpenter, Guitar, Writer - TERRY DATE, Producer, Mixer, Engineer, Recorded by - Matt Tuggle, AssistantEngineer - Will Borza, Masterer - Andy D. Park, Engineer, Recorded by

© 2020 Reprise Records ℗ 2020 Reprise Records

8
Radiant City
00:03:35

Sergio Vega, Vocals, Writer, Bass - Howie Weinberg, Masterer - Frank Delgado, Keyboards, Writer, Samples - Deftones, Producer, MainArtist - Abe Cunningham, Drums, Writer - Chino Moreno, Lyricist, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Carpenter, Guitar, Writer - TERRY DATE, Producer, Mixer, Engineer, Recorded by - Matt Tuggle, AssistantEngineer - Will Borza, Masterer - Andy D. Park, Engineer, Recorded by

© 2020 Reprise Records ℗ 2020 Reprise Records

9
Headless
00:04:59

Sergio Vega, Vocals, Writer, Bass - Howie Weinberg, Masterer - Frank Delgado, Keyboards, Writer, Samples - Deftones, Producer, MainArtist - Abe Cunningham, Drums, Writer - Chino Moreno, Lyricist, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Carpenter, Guitar, Writer - TERRY DATE, Producer, Mixer, Engineer, Recorded by - Matt Tuggle, AssistantEngineer - Will Borza, Masterer - Andy D. Park, Engineer, Recorded by

© 2020 Reprise Records ℗ 2020 Reprise Records

10
Ohms
00:04:10

Sergio Vega, Vocals, Writer, Bass - Howie Weinberg, Masterer - Frank Delgado, Keyboards, Writer, Samples - Deftones, Producer, MainArtist - Abe Cunningham, Drums, Writer - Chino Moreno, Lyricist, Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Stephen Carpenter, Guitar, Writer - TERRY DATE, Producer, Mixer, Engineer, Recorded by - Matt Tuggle, AssistantEngineer - Will Borza, Masterer - Andy D. Park, Engineer, Recorded by

© 2020 Reprise Records ℗ 2020 Reprise Records

Album review

Unless System Of A Down reunites and proves us otherwise, there's no nu-metal band that's aged better than Deftones. Sure, the Sacramento group has always veered closer to alt-metal auteurs like Tool and A Perfect Circle than Korn or Limp Bizkit, and if that maturity came at the cost of some cheap commercial hits back in the day, then it's paid off tenfold in the long haul. On their ninth record Ohms, their first in four years, Deftones are a bunch of guys pushing 50 who sound fresher and more energized than most metal bands half their age. The band spent the 2010s toying with increasingly experimental and cerebral concepts—the sort of thing artsy bands do when they're 15 years into the game—but Ohms is a brilliant and undeniable return to form.

The album marks a reunion with their original producer Terry Date (who worked the boards for their first four records), but it also brings some new blood into the fold: guitarist Stephen Carpenter's nine-string guitar. The beastly axe allows for subterranean low-ends that sound spectacular in contrast to Chino Moreno's soaring vocals. On songs like "Error" and "Radiant City," the palm-muted chugs recall gurgling djent tones, adding a rejuvenating heft to Deftones' signature blend of dreamy and dastardly. Beyond the exquisite production and all-around knockout performances, Ohms is just a great collection of songs. "Ceremony" features a smashing chorus, just a total wallop of a song, while tracks like the surging, spastic "This Link Is Dead" and the metalcore-ish "Urantia" center their unmatched might. The record's title-track closer features a bluesy riff that splatters into gangly shredding, ending the album on a mountainous peak that brings to mind early Mastodon. Considering how long Deftones have been at it, Ohms is technically a late-career record. But in this instance, at least, age is just a number. This band sounds like they're just hitting their stride. © Eli Enis/Qobuz

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