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Kicks! Quick reviews of new music


• Koi No Yokan, released Nov. 13

With six album releases since 1995, the Deftones are no strangers to the alternative rock scene. They have built a devout following through hard-hitting guitar riffs and thought-provoking vocals, though not without the occasional musical misstep.

Their latest album, “Koi No Yokan,” would likely fall somewhere in between the terms “huge success” and “par for the course.” From purely a musical standpoint, “Koi No Yokan” is incredibly successful and enjoyable. The songs are well-written and composed, and the Deftones deserve all the credit in the world for that.

The opening track, “Swerve City,” is has a great deal more pace to it than most Deftones fans will probably recognize, but it gets the blood pumping nonetheless. Songs like “Entombed” and “Tempest” are probably more along the speed of what long-time Deftones fans have come to expect.

One of the best things about “Koi No Yokan” is the transition between tracks. It’s almost seamless, creating an album that flows smoothly. Chino Moreno, the band’s vocalist, is as talented as he’s ever been, hitting his usual range.

The only problem this album really faces is the production of the lyrics themselves. Moreno’s vocal strength can only go so far, and there are period throughout “Koi No Yokan” where he’s drowned out by the music. Other times, he comes through clear as a bell. It should be noted that the album succeeds everywhere else despite this fact.

The last track is entitled “What Happened to You?” In the end, the Deftones will be able to answer “Nothing.” The album will please the ears of long-time Deftones fans, but it also carries the potential to draw in new listeners, expanding the fan base to new heights.

Kyle Drapeau, For The Sun News

Green Day

• Dos, released Nov. 13

Green Day is a band that needs no introduction to those who are familiar with punk and its many forms.

Over the years, they’ve released albums that cover everything from smoking marijuana to their political opinions. Their sound, while staying similar enough to remain recognizable, has changed over the years.

The band’s latest release, “Dos,” feels more like a return to older albums like “Dookie” and “Nimrod,” and less like the new Green Day that has received mixed reviews from fans with releases like “American Idiot” and “21st Century Breakdown.”

“See You Tonight,” the first track on the album, has a folk feel to it, relying solely on an acoustic guitar and harmony. The album moves along at a brisk pace from here on out, as evidenced by the fact that only two of tracks on the entire album exceed four minutes and the album as a whole doesn’t even exceed 40 minutes.

Yet, everything feels just as it should be for a band that has always moved at this pace. Songs like “Stop When The Red Lights Flash” and “Lazy Bones” are just like the kind that made Green Day a mainstay in CD players throughout the past two decades. “Stray Heart” starts off with a bass line that’s eerily similar to Jet’s “Are You Gonna Be My Girl,” and carries throughout the song, which is actually really cool, if a little surprising.

“Lady Cobra,” one the album’s later tracks, is a strange hybrid between “Longview,” one of the band’s older releases, and “Fell In Love With A Girl,” one of the first songs released by the White Stripes. And then there’s “Nightlife,” the very next track. Lead singer Billy Joe Armstrong welcomes recording artist Lady Cobra to do guest vocals, and the two collaborate to create a head-bobbing slow jam. It’s a song very unlike anything Green Day has done before, but that makes it even more amazing.

Ultimately, this is album will please anyone with an ear for quality punk music that is much harder to find in this age of computer-produced music. There isn’t one bad song on this entire album unless coarse language is an issue. However, truth be told, this album is so good that an exception should be made.

Kyle Drapeau, For The Sun News