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“We’re not afraid to be pretty.” It’s an adjective most riff-heavy groups might avoid, but then, Deftones have never been your average hard rock band. As kids, the Sacramento fivesome cut its teeth on Anthrax and The Smiths, Pantera and The Cure, skateboarding and “The Smurfs.” As a band out of high school, Deftones mixed trip hop with thrash, melodic vocals with crushing reverb, and yes, pretty with ugly. As chart-toppers and headliners, they’ve crossed over genres and confused the hell out of your iPod (“Heavy Metal?” “Hard Rock?” “Alternative?”) Above all, Deftones have stuck together throughout their often-turbulent tenure. “We’re not a party band, but we’re not a dark rock band,” says Moreno. “It’s hard to put us in one place. I don’t blame people when they try to do it, because I can’t even pin it myself. But really, does it matter?” Not when you’re as compelling, diverse, powerful and pretty as Deftones.

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