Local Wire

Deftones @ Fear Farm

You can't keep a good pseudo-metal band down. So it goes with the Deftones, whose new album, Diamond Eyes, follows a disastrous mid-career detour that nearly derailed their shit permanently. It all started in 2008, when founding bassist Chi Cheng suffered massive brain damage in a car wreck, rendering him semi-comatose in what clinicians call a "minimally conscious state." After a benefit show the following spring, the band decided to scrap nearly a full album's worth of original studio material, declaring that they needed "a new approach." With surrogate bassist Sergio Vega in tow, they went into the studio again and came up with Diamond Eyes — 11 tracks of tuneful, artfully damaged hard rock that debuted at number six on the Billboard 200 in May. The disc evinces a "positive zest for life," according to lyricist and lead singer Chino Moreno, adding "Our inspiration and unity as a bad is stronger than it's ever been before." Moreno and co. will headline the "Big Red Night of the Dead" festival at Fear Farm, leading a bill that also includes Suicidal Tendencies and local metal arse-kickers Howitzer.

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Craig Outhier