My Formative Albums Of The 00’s No. 1: Deftones – White Pony

Rather than pick a collection of my favourite albums of the past 10 years I decided to pick 20 of the albums that had the biggest influence on my life. Being in my early 20’s now, the past decade was a formative expanse of time in my musical tastes, and I want my choices to reflect that.

So I’m gonna ignore all musical trends and albums other bloggers may feel forced to include as to escape ridicule (Merriweather Post Pavillion, I’m looking at you) and just shoot from the hip. Not all choices will be ‘cool’, or whatever the kids are saying these days. But so what? Fuck those posers who rewrite their musical history for the sake of trends.

So lets start at the beginning. I’m gonna go in a chronological release order. And the first entry in this category is the best Deftones album, released on 20th June 2000:

In the late 90’s/early 00’s I had shed the britpop and indie I had previously adored and replaced them with hip hop, metal, punk and grunge bands. But I didn’t just jump into Faith No More or Converge’s back catalogues instantly. I admit for around a year I was into some nu metal-esque bands like Incubus and Korn. But don’t hate me: I was educating myself. I then progressed to Rage Against The Machine and Tool and around that time this beauty was released. Because of my financial situation I did not manage to acquire it until Christmas of that year. And I proceeded to gorge on it for the entire morning. Every Christmas I try to give this album a spin. As un-seasonal as it is, it really soundtracks good feelings for me.

I hesitate to call any album a masterpiece, but this is definitely the one where all the pieces fell into place for Deftones, and they matured into one of modern metal’s big boys. I thankfully got the version that DIDN’T include the dreadful alternative opener Back To School (Mini Maggit), which was a nu-metal bastardisation of the epic White Pony closer Pink Maggit, and instead opened with the ferocious, sexually arresting Feiticeria. From then on, Deftones incorporate moody, expansive atmospherics and keys (Digital Bath, RX Queen),huge hooks (Change (In The House Of Flies), inspired guest spots (Maynard from Tool on Passenger, Rodleen Getsic on Knife Prty) and some classic Deftones aggression (EliteKorea).

The pony inspires devotion...

White Pony is easily the most critically acclaimed release from the Sacramento outfit and it was the album that provided the gateway for me to explore into more extreme musical territory. Without this album and Tool’s Lateralus I was able to get into Glassjaw and Thrice. If you want to explore further into metal and haven’t listened to White Pony, you really should do that. I just realised I posted about Deftones recently, so if you want mp3’s, hit those up and see what you think. Take a listen to my favourite WP track:

Deftones – Digital Bath – LP Version

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