Depth, layers, twisting and turning textures...this is what "White Pony" is all about! The boys have done it again, continuing with the growth evident from "Adrenaline" to "Around The Fur". A stand-out album in 2000 and in the whole genre.
The seething, boiling rage is still there - pure and untouched. It's just channeled and expressed with more maturity, nuance and sophistication now. The Deftones make more use of texture, contrast and atmosphere/space in the music on this album to get their point across. It makes the music more compelling and even more dark and haunting...listen to the brilliance of "Digital Bath" and "Rx Queen" to hear what I mean -- brooding rage played with grace and finesse.
There's more variety here...different song structures, experimentation with different beats, layers and instrumentation, more contrasting sound choices...but make no mistake, THIS IS THE DEFTONES.
They have not made the classic mistake of "growing" so much that they sound disjointed, incoherent...or like another band altogether. It still bears the classic Deftone scars....relentless, oppressive, biting guitars, pounding bass, precise, grooving drums...and Chino's sensual, keening, expressive vocals.
Some of the best, most aggressive riffs the Deftones have come up with are on this album...check out the fury of "Elite" and the syncopated, chunky metal-laden "Street Carp." More textures and sounds coaxed out of the guitars on this release.
Also, Chino has grown by leaps and bounds. His sultry, whispery howl is still present...but he explores the higher registers more often (singing, not screaming) and there is more modulation and shading to his voice, more of a sense of melody and nuance. And there's vocal harmonies at some points...a virtual first for the Deftones. They work. But do not fear -- Chino's blood-curdling, savage screaming intensity is still in full force.
Once again, the secret weapon of this band is Abe Cunningham...the drumming on "White Pony" is full of precision, monstrous grooves, tension and release, and coloring and subtlety. Abe gives the songs breath, momentum and finesse.
Some of the better tracks are "Feiticiera", "Digital Bath, "Knife Party", "Korea" and "Passenger" - a collaboration with Maynard James Keenan of Tool and A Perfect Circle.