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Dig Deftones at Agganis Arena

The alt-metal rockers will jar and soothe you on May 13.

The year was 1988, the city was Sacramento, California. Three high school pals – singer Chino Moreno, guitarist Stephen Carpenter, and drummer Abe Cunningham – started jamming together. Over time, they picked the name Deftones, became a quartet, became a quintet, had some lineup changes, played show after show, developed what would eventually be called the nu-metal sound, and recorded their first album, “Adrenaline,” in 1995.

What separated them from other hard-hitting bands, especially on later albums, was their penchant for switching things up. One song might be a real head-banger, with screaming vocals and screeching guitar feedback. Another – on the same album – would be softer, laid back, almost gentle, relying more on melody than explosiveness.


There wasn’t much middle ground, but that didn’t matter. Deftones albums sold well, and the band was constantly on the road. Hats off to them over the fact that their most recent release, 2020’s “Ohms,” while still keeping things loud and soft, also manages to blur the songs’ disparateness, to pull things together into more of a fluid groove. Some of the selections — for instance, “Ceremony” and “Pompeji” — manage to match up the loud and the soft, the fast and the slow, the harsh and the haunting in the same song. That’s quite a feat!

And now, a few “fun facts” about the members of Deftones, culled from past interviews:

Chino Moreno’s favorite author is Charles Bukowski.

Abe Cunningham enjoys listening to Willie Nelson.

Stephen Carpenter wishes he had a chance to tour with the Beatles.

Frank Delgado’s (keyboards, turntables) favorite film director is Alejandro Jodorowsky.

There are no favorites for bass player Sergio Vega, as he just left the band. A new member will be announced shortly.

You can grab Deftones tickets at Ticketmaster.

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