It’s almost impossible for the deftones to make a bad album at this stage of their almost 20-year recorded career. However, it’s not impossible for them to continually raise the bar in heaviness with each album. On the bands seventh album, they have made the most solid and, quite possibly, best album of their career so far.

Deftones albums don’t necessarily fall into the metal category all the time. Their benchmark album, White Pony (Which I still think is just “ok”), has only one really heavy song on it while other albums go so far off into the ether that you’d swear it was one of Chino Moreno’s side projects. There is no doubt that’s not the case on their latest, Koi No Yokan. The minute the Stephen Carpenter riffs slaughter “Swerve City”‘s opening with Abe Cunningmham’s staccato beats, it’s apparent that album number seven is gonna be something special. “Romantic Dreams” slows the pace slightly and Moreno ups the ante with his howling delivery and bassist Sergio Vega gets a chance to stand out during a breakdown further within that leads to some guitar lines similar to a band Vega recently reunited with.

You might’ve read Popblerd’s write-up on first single “Leathers” already and may have been wary that the song was a fluke and not indicative of the whole of Koi No Yokan. If you’re not convinced yet than just wait until you hear “Poltergeist”, a mechanical riff monstrosity that’s just about the most amazing song deftones have ever laid down.

Big credit goes to producer Nick Raskulinecz, who follows up his work on the magnificent Diamond Eyes with an album that is the next logical step yet full of extremes. While DE was filled with big, chunky riffing, Koi No Yokan is sleeker, more concise, and more visceral in the guitar department. The mellow bits are even more mellow and the ambiance Frank Delgado adds is even more accentuated. No song on Koi No Yokan is a greater example of this than “Tempest” and “Rosemary” which are both experiments in aural excellence. As a whole, though, no song on Koi No Yokan is less than stellar. It’s that good.

Koi No Yokan is out on November 13th.

Grade: A+

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