Download 2010: DEFTONES
Highlights from the press conference
Photo by Sara Bowery
After the 2008 car accident that left guitarist Chi Cheng in a coma, many wondered how the tight knit Deftones would carry on. In 2010, we finally got the answer, in the Sergio Vega-bolstered Diamond Eyes, and in a tight set that saw them comfortable secure their second from top billing at this year's Download. Here's some of the highlights from the backstage press conference before their Saturday set...
Do you think that there is enough support from major labels for younger bands making experimental music, to allow them to develop?Sergio Vega - "I think with technology and alternate pathways that people have for exposing themselves and their music, I think that the means by which you get to be where you want to be as a band are kind of changing, and I don't think they necessarily need to be concerned about whether a label's going to sign you or not. I think if you have attitude and a laptop, and an internet connection, then you should be alright."
Chino Moreno - "It's about yourself nowadays. You can't rely on someone actually giving you the opportunity and the time to do A&R-ing anymore. It's all self, especially with the technology. That's going to differentiate the bands, being able to take advantage of stuff like that."Sergio - "Instead of waiting for someone to take their content and develop it, you can just start a blog or make it happen. Any band of any ilk should be able to."
What's the latest update on Chi? How's he doing?Chino: "He's making progress. It's slow, but he is making progress. His family's been updating the site OneLoveForChi and just recently they updated with news that he is starting to respond a little bit more every day. It's taking time, it's a slow process but... We're hoping the best for him, and hoping that one day he returns one day to speak and to create."
Do you guys get a lot of chance to visit him?Chino: "As much as we can. Last time we saw him was over Easter break, it was a couple of months ago, we were back in the States. It's tough to see him in his condition, but he's a strong guy and he's fighting it, so we just hope for the best."
How do you feel about the new album?Chino: "Very pleased with it. We worked hard on the record, we went through a lot to make it, and it felt like we logged ourselves into it, a lot of our emotions, our time and our efforts to really get focussed on doing it, and the proof of what we put into it we're getting out of it. People have been loving it, we're playing a lot of it in our shows, when usually we wouldn't as much new stuff, but... the energy to me holds it up."
How do you feel about album leaks?Chino: "It's going to happen, my opinion doesn't matter, it's going to happen so... I'm not really against it, it's going to happen... It'll do things like it'll come out two months before it's supposed to be out, but ideally it wouldn't be released for a couple of days but it came out when it did, and we can't really do anything about it. Our main thing is to make a great record, so make a good product and hopefully our fans, the people who follow our band will want something tangible and buy that record. But the best thing we can do is to carry on the record, so say if we just made a mediocre record, people download it hear it once or twice and go 'eh', but I think we have a good product there, and I think word of mouth will spread. We'd rather get the positive spin on it."
What does it mean to you guys to be invited to play at Donington, Britain's home of rock and metal?Chino: "It's really good man, I mean this our third time here I think. It's awesome, we have a great slot, we're before Rage, just energy, we're excited. I think this time will be the best, hands down."
Any reason why?Sergio: "Technology." [Titters from the crowd] "It's much easier to call home, it's much easier to take pictures to capture the experience and to share with your friends."
Will Eros, the album you recorded with Chi, still be coming out?Chino: "Yeah it will, we haven't actually sat down as a band to discuss if, when, where we're at, but we're very proud of what we did on that record. We hold it very dear to us, obviously it's the last thing that Chi's played on at this time and there's this great music in there, but like I said we haven't really sat and talked about, made a plan about it yet... [We] might even write another record before that yet, but we're not really looking at it yet. We're focussing at the moment on this record."
Do you think enough is being done on radio and TV to promote guitar esoteric music?Chino: "Um, I don't know, I've never really relied on TV or radio to find anything that I think was really interesting... You have to go out and search for music, and that was the one thing as a kid that I really did. I went to skateboard to the record store every single day, look through records, you know what I mean, tape cassettes, and I had to search for music. And now kids actually have it easier, they can go on the internet and spend all day just searching and searching for music. So you have to have ambition to get out there and find good music. It's not just going to fall in your lap, you know?"
Diamond Eyes is out now. Click here for the RM Review.